Saturday, March 16, 2013

Why I'll never have my own cooking show

As I was making enchiladas for lunch today, I was struck by the concept of why I'd never have my own cooking show.  Now I'm not saying I've ever had any notion that I COULD, but I can tell ya, after today, I'm darn tootin' sure I WON'T.

First off, I'm no chef.  I can follow a recipe with the best of 'em.  Maybe even change it up a bit. I'd consider myself a decent - possibly even good - cook; but come up with a recipe off the cuff, on my own?  Nope, not happenin'.  My go to spices are garlic, onion, salt, and pepper.  Not exactly Iron Chef material.

Beyond that, however, was the insight by which I was clobbered today.

I'm a messy cook.  I guess I've known that.  I really dislike clean up when I'm finished - so does everyone else that ends up with that job. There's got to be a reason for that.  :-)

As I was preparing the enchiladas - which I've never made before - I was reminded, quite vividly of just how messy I'm inclined to be.  While making the rue for the enchilada sauce, which needed to be stirred frequently between chopping onion and zucchini, this tendency was more than obvious.  I'm not sure if I had one too many cups 'o joe this morning resulting in jerky, terse movements; or if I was just overzealous in general; but practically every time I grabbed that wooden handle to stir the concoction, I sloshed it out and over the side of the skillet, usually into the well of the burner in front of the one I was actually using.  I can't even tell you how many times that happened.  It seemed and looked like EVERY time.

I tempered my fervent grasp on the spoon as I stirred in the tomato sauce.  All went well, until.... I finished pouring in the sauce and went to put the can into the sink - you know, to keep my work station tidy.  It was at this point that my well intended efforts resulted in yet more disarray.  With a slight flick of the wrist, a stream of red cascaded from the mostly empty container.  As if in slow motion, the tomato sauce splattered, with a flourish, quite artistically, onto the front of the dishwasher door.  If I were an abstract painter, this might have been quite grand.  But, alas, I'm not and my dishwasher door was no artist's canvas.

Cleaning up the mess, I noted reason three I'm not cut out for the Food Network or any other 'food' show.  Not only was I messy, I was a mess.  I wasn't smiling cheerily at the camera.  I wasn't calm and pulled together deftly moving from one task to the next. I was whirling around the kitchen like a chicken with it's head cut off. I was sweating, wincing, making several trips to the same cupboard to retrieve items I had missed or forgotten the many trips before.  It was NOT a pretty sight.

I console myself with the fact this was a new recipe. I hadn't rehearsed making it. It wasn't an 'old standyby' that I knew like the back of my hand.  However,  I'm still quite certain, if I were to ever have the opportunity to display my cooking talent to the world, I'd be just as messy; just as frazzled.  I wouldn't remember to smile and talk about each step as I did it.  I'd have ingredients on the floor, on my face, and most likely all over the place.

In conclusion, I'll simply continue preparing meals for my family, making a mess as I go, enjoying the time to explore new avenues with my cooking abilities.  I'll bring my kids in on the fun, allowing them to make messes too.  Although, I find it even harder to stay calm when THAT happens. :-)

Are you a messy cook?  Do you gather everything together before you even start?  I am hit or miss on this point. I often do, which makes things run quite smoothly, but other times - like enchilada day - I don't and it makes for a much more lively escapade.


  1. This was really funny! I could envision it all!

    1. Thanks. It was pretty funny. Every time I sloshed the mixture I felt like saying "really?" Then when the tomato sauce so elegantly splattered the dish washer - all I could do was laugh - in an exasperated fashion, but laugh I did.

  2. Liz, I am really enjoying reading your blog. I encourage you to give yourself a break and consider your stage of life and how many DISTRACTIONS you have before, during and after you are trying to cook...and remember that cooking show "stars" have producers, directors, go-fers, and other staff to get everything ready and clean up after them. You are doing a wonderful job with your family. I am in awe of your tenacity and courage with everything you do. Love and hugs, Chris Vogelsang

    1. Thanks, Chris. I appreciate your encouragement. I do acknowledge that the 'stars' have help and rehearse etc. It was just comical as I went through my meal prep that day. The 'idea' just hit me of how NOT like a cooking show my real life cooking is. LOL!


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