Measuring Perfection

 

Kitchen Therapy

Kitchen Therapy

“How much balsamic vinegar do you add?”

During a coaching session with a client, I offered up my simple signature salad dressing recipe. I jotted down the ingredients on her form and she asked me for the exact amounts.

“I don’t measure,” I replied, ” but I’ll give you an estimate.”

I love cooking. Not all the time but generally it’s something I feel comfortable doing. Often I find myself standing in front of the fridge thinking I’ve planned nothing for dinner and seeing nothing that looks like it might morph into dinner, when creativity strikes and I pull a perfectly passable meal from what appeared to be un-mixable odds and sods in the fridge and pantry.

I think the main reason I enjoy cooking is that I don’t measure. There is no need to get it right or make a masterpiece. It is my creative outlet where perfection is not aloud to enter. When I get caught up in measuring, I expect perfect results and am disappointed if they do not occur. I don’t need that kind of pressure in the kitchen and I don’t want to eat it with my meal.

If I want to re-create someone else’s work, then a recipe is needed. Often I find I like to put my own spin on things, however, and add the spices I enjoy or create a little fusion that fits the taste buds of the whole fam. I like to experiment and introduce my favourite flavours into new territories. Not everyone’s a fan but the Coconut Chai Rice Pudding was a huge hit for lunch. (Recipe coming soon).

I use my senses to guide me: texture, consistency, aroma, taste, color. “Mom, are the pancakes supposed to be green?”

Maybe that’s why I enjoy cooking, it’s more like finger painting, no pressure and lots of fun. I believe that’s why my kids eat so well. They may complain, “Soup again?” But they’ll eat it up, usually, and you’d be amazed at the veggies, super-foods and herbs that make up most of their meals.

That’s not to say sometimes it isn’t just fun, non-nutritionally balanced fare. I’m certain there’s no measuring going on there either.

Baking is an exception (although I have to admit I let it slide there as well), unless you enjoy flat cupcakes and doughy muffins, measuring is advised.

I’ve had a few flops but most times I’ve found spontaneous creativity and delicious results from letting my kitchen intuition run wild.

 

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