Cookbooks and Art of Cooking

TEXT & PHOTO: Kaycie Gayle

This morning I brought out my cookbooks and was about to choose a dish for the day when I paused and just decided to close and keep them again after realizing something..

I once baked a bread and its as hard as a stone you can actually throw it and can hurt if it hits somebody. Hence my sister end up teasing me that I’m a good baker to be able to make a stone. I tried once again and cooked a pancake to surprise my family for Sunday breakfast and turned out to be a blockbuster. They were indeed amazed of its taste because it was different and flavorful. I haven’t tasted it yet because they came before i was finished  so I was curious what was the rave about and tried it for myself. It tastes bitter and salty!!! Hence, everybody laughed and again I was teased by my sister and father for being so exceptional in cooking a pancake to make it salty with a coffee bitter taste. Again I tried another dish and was confident I was doing it right because I have tried it twice or thrice already, (of course with the guidance of my mom) but when my mother came, she was surprised I put a lot of oil in it… Ergo, I have come to accept that I really don’t have cooking skill. Others are effortlessly doing it, while the ‘struggle is real’ for me. I have to ask questions like ‘why is it like this? Why do I have to put those? Why do I have to do that? How did it came to be like that?’ And I keep on memorizing the process just to remember what to do next, but still I end up forgetting when I am about to cook. Hence I am always intimidated whenever I’m in the kitchen.

I have come to accept that maybe I will never be good in cooking. Ironic is I have a collection of cookbooks about different culinary cultures and find joy in reading them but still haven’t mastered the art of cooking. Consequently, I have learn to contain myself in just reading it because I can’t cook well. But its alright, im okay that cooking will be left a frustration. The good thing is at least I can still know more about food even just by reading different cuisines from travels of great chefs. Who knows I might get to learn how to cook those soon by keeping on reading these culinary journey books. Also, if I happen to be in those places that the cookbook writers and chefs have  been to at least I am pretty familiar with its local cuisines, know which ones to try, and appreciate their food culture.

For the meantime, I will just open the cookbooks again, lounge on the sofa and enjoy reading the featured dishes.

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