I was a fussy eater. Early on my mother got wise to dealing with me. She taught me to cook. Now I love to cook. I am not one to be daunted by a recipe. I have a framed picture of Jacques Pepin over my bed. To be frank my idea of a good day off would be big dollars to shop, lots of time to cook and then a big meal with my loved ones inclusive of a hot array of vino. Wrap it up with a good scotch while someone else does the dishes -- NIRVANA.
I worked in food service from about the age of fourteen until I was in my early twenties. This included a fine French restaurant and summer stint in a Rocky Mountain hotel near Banff. I have had my fill of chefs.
There has long been a part of me that wanted to be "Chef". Don't cross me in my kitchen figuratively -- or literally. P-man has received many an earful for moving too slowly, failing to tidy as he goes, and taking up too much space. I have tried to educate him in the ways of the galley but he has proved resistant to every method of persuasion (and coercion).
After many years of enduring this detente I am now Chef. My two-year old has a good interest in the kitchen. I capitalized early on her love of painting to buy those cute coloured silicon basting brushes and she is now my sous chef extraordinnaire. She can mix my olive oil, salt and pepper, and prep no end of vegetable dishes. And chopping? Well, if you give a toddler a dozen mushrooms and a table knife they will stay busy for about 30 minutes, and if you can make do with macerated, you are golden.
About 6 months into her apprenticeship she appears eager to expand her repertoire. Last week she made noodles. With the introduction of serious heat management responsibilities I have started a new rubric for communication and progress. She must ask permission and act only when and how instructed. And, she must respond, "Yes, chef."
This rocks my world.