Food. We all need it. There are many ways of obtaining it, but I choose to cook.
There was a time in my life where chose differently. Cooking took too much time. It was much easier to buy fast food or throw something in the microwave. All I had to do was push a few buttons or hand over some cash and presto-chango food appeared. It was super awesome.
Back then, the numbers on the scale went up while the numbers in the bank account went down. Something had to change. Saving money and getting healthy are just fringe benefits to me when it comes to cooking my own food.
I’m going on my fifth month of unemployment. Each day, I look rejection in the eye and put my resume out there. It is cooking that saves me from going down a hole I don’t know I’d be able to pull myself out of. Ok, that might be a little dramatic, but it’s not too far from the truth.
When I cook, I don’t know how it is going to turn out, but that ok. Sometimes I’m working with a new ingredient. Sometimes I’m making a tried and true favorite. In the process, I learn something. Either I learn about the food I am making – Where did it come from? Why do people eat it? How is it traditionally served? What can I substitute in? What if I did this instead of that? Or I am learning about myself – I work better with this knife over that one. If I start this process now it will be done in time to start the next one. It’s better when you make a list before you go to the store. Each dish is a challenge. Each dish tells a story. Each dish has a purpose.
At the end of the day, what is really important to me when I cook, is the fact that I accomplished something. I produced a product. I made something with my own hands. I have contributed to myself, my family, my friends, my community.
During this time in my life when days can go by without feeling a sense of purpose, cooking something as simple as grilled cheese keeps me in the game.
You might notice that this post is a little different than the others I’ve written so far on this site. I am looking to add new topics into what I cover here on One World, One Plate. I hope you enjoy it. Don’t forget to like the site on Facebook for more updates and food tips!