After the first week of my feet officially planted in a kitchen, I am content to my trade.
Well, mostly content.
I suppose this will all wear off naturally — the glamour of a new start. But for now, I can’t stop thinking about change. It’s important to keep moving, but to also be consistent for your sake and for the customers who want to come in a get what they ate the last time they were in.
In figuring out what people want and how to best give folks what they desire, you have to tweak and you have to keep up.
It’s constant. But for a dude with my attention span, I am always looking around for ideas. In a sense, I can’t stop.
For the fear of seeming cliché, I will say the inspiration to cook comes from deep down. It’s not quite something I can bury so easily. I’m constantly thinking about ways to make food taste better and how to figure out better ways to please the dining public.
Some days, you think you’ve done justice to some beautiful vegetables and then see the folks next door cramming pizza with ranch and sriracha into their gullets. I mean, we’ve all been there. But sometimes, those things are soul-killing. When you invest so much in food — the thought, preparation and execution — it can feel like a mighty big let down.
I’m not complaining though. Just learning curves and pains. Not everyone will understand you or your menu. Not everyone wants a salad. Usually I don’t. People say they do, but what they really want is a cold fried chicken sandwich.
So then my mind goes to, “Well, dang, I make decent fried chicken…and I can make it hot on Sunday night and serve it cold as a kick-ass sandwich on Monday night!” And in theory that sounds fun, but probably doesn’t work all that well.
I love cold fried chicken. It’s the next best thing to hot fried chicken. (Same goes with Chinese food, right?)
As a person who creates, or whose job it is to be creative and somewhat original, you are always thinking. As any person with the small pressures on their back to perform day in and day out.
I reckon’ it’s just my thoughts. At least it’s what I’m thinking about today. When I eat something delicious and know someone put some thought into it. It takes a lot of work to put out a cohesive dish that involves many parts. Like blending colors on a palette to achieve a big blue sky.
Lord have mercy am I sounding dramatic these days…
Okay dude, back down to reality where really, people are content with simple things.
Keeping it simple is good. Too much, and sometimes, things go awry.
But I will let you know that I’m always thinking. That sometimes, as I’m falling asleep, my wife will ask me what I’m thinking about and I’ll say, “Oh, just trying to figure out a good size for an iceberg wedge…”
And she’ll say, “Sweetie, seriously, you should probably just go to sleep.”
“Yeah, you’re right.”