March 4, 2010

Put Down That Recipe!

Many people say they can't cook but they can follow a recipe.  Although that is still cooking, what they mean is that they can't cook unless there is a recipe.  Going from being a cook to a chef is knowing the properties and tastes of ingredients so that recipes are minimally necessary.

My advice?  Put down that recipe!  Give it a brief look and then don't look at it again.  Smell the spices and learn why they are paired together.  Get your hands in the dough and learn what it feels like so you might be able to recreate it another day without the recipe.

The more you do this with recipes, the more comfortable you will get leaving recipes behind and getting creative with your cooking.  You think a dish needs thyme?  Throw it in!  Who cares if it's not in the recipe?  There are no recipe police... only emerging chefs in the kitchen.

So, go ahead.  Dump the recipe and make up the rest.  You will be a far better cook for it.

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