“To Ed, the great appeal of cooking…was not so much the meal as the occasion it provided for a time around the fire, for talk and camaraderie” – Michael Pollan, Cooked.
I cook to work with my passion – food – while still serving others. It’s a creative medium where I can process and manipulate ingredients to produce something that can be enjoyed with every sense; captivating the eater with surreal and exciting flavors, compositions of art, ethereal aromas, symphonies of sound derived from both the cooking and the consumption of food and unique textures to the palate. Eating is a full sensory appeal unlike anything else, and to be able to create something so sacred that it employs each of our senses is both rewarding and humbling.
I cook because of these specific appeals to our senses. There are a myriad of possibilities that come from similar and different combinations of ingredients. Onions, carrots and celery – mirepoix or the holy trinity – as well as other permutations and modifications of these, are used across so many cuisines to ultimately create diverse and exotic flavors: out of one, many. Within each of these arises aromas so complex that it is nearly impossible to describe them with words alone. And to be present, receiving or giving, is always an invigorating experience.
“For is there any practice less selfish, any labor less alienated, any time less wasted the preparing something delicious and nourishing for the people you love?” – Michael Pollan, Cooked. I cook to serve, satisfy and nourish. There is a tremendous amount of satisfaction – internally and externally – that is derived from cooking. Internally through an expression of passion and creativity, but externally others can appreciate this in a way far superior. There is enjoyment, gratitude and amazement: satisfaction. Dining offers a tantalizing experience, with no required work, that ultimately creates happiness and sustains life.
I cook because it is a total act of creation. Along every step, from preparing to serving you are building or changing; a new ingredients, a fantastic flavor, a memory that will last a life time. New experiences flow forth from food that may have never come to be. It allows for meeting new people, learning about a culture or discovering your new favorite ingredients or place to dine. These only being to scratch the surface for the unique oppurtunities that food has to offer. They come and go, sometimes a rare occurance, others frequent and some one a lifetime.
So why cook? Well, why not? I can create, inspire and release; losing myself in the food and its processes in a way unlike anything else. I can provide a satisfying experience for myself and others simultaneously. It’s mystical, invigorating and beautiful; an experience shared by its creator(s) and the participant(s). I cook to surround myself with food. I cook because “Food is life”.
Why do you?