I like to cook.
Maybe that’s underselling it a little. How about this:
Whenever I’m in the kitchen, an inexplicable sense of calm washes over me. When I turn on the stovetop, and hear that click-click-click for a second before the heat of the blue flames come searing out of the holes with a satisfying whoosh, I’m home.
Whenever I take a clove of peeled garlic, take my honed knife in hand, and slice it into pieces so paper-thin I can see through them when I hold them up to the light, I feel a satisfaction I can never replicate from anything else. When I toss them into a well-oiled pan and hear that sizzle, it is music to my ears. When I toss them with a deft flick of the wrist, I feel like an acrobat.
And when it’s time to finally assemble everything – when all the pieces have come together – and I take a step back, look at my plate, and marvel at everything I’ve done to create something that will eventually be destroyed within minutes, I feel elated and bittersweet at the same time, like admiring a sand castle that I know the tide will swallow.
Still, though, the food is worth it. Because, and here I’m going to knock on wood(en cutting board), I’m a damn good cook.
It’s not just about the food, though, that’s why I’m so enamored by cooking. The best part of taking ingredients and transforming them into something beyond edible is that you get to share the joy that you created with everyone else. There’s nothing quite like your roommates peering over your shoulder as you’re busying yourself at the counter, taking a sniff, and saying “that smells really great”.
And when they take a bite, with me trying-but-failing-oh-so-hard to be nonchalant, and nod their approval, that just makes my entire day.
That’s why I cook.
(For more of my food-related posts, as well as my general goings-on about town, check out my Instagram!)