Thursday, January 15, 2009

Classic Beef Stew

It's cold in NY. We woke up to a coating of snow, and frigid temperatures. All of this cold makes me think about soups and stew. I am still a beginner cook. I've been at it for awhile now, but still a beginner. I like taking on new recipes though. I finally got over my fear of boiling chicken, and conquered chicken noodle soup. I've made it twice, and the second time was better, so progress. This week I took on classic beef stew. With the help of Mark Bittman (my cooking hero) it was super easy. My cooking bible is Bittman's How to Cook Everything. Just like Bittman himself, it's straight forward step by step instructions for the every day cook.

He says it best "Striving for brilliance in everyday cooking is a recipe for frustration. Rather, everyday cooking is about preparing good, wholesome, tasty, varied meals for the ones you love. This is a simple, satisfying pleasure. Your results need not be perfect to give you this gift, to which all humans are entitled." As I read that over again, I think it also pertains to everyday art. Not striving for brilliance, and just having fun mixing things together, simply because it's good for you. I think there are a lot of hidden lessons in cooking.

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