Tuesday, August 28, 2007

The breath of life

I had a young cook working for me a few years ago who had not yet discovered the shear joy of cooking. She was always wanted me to give her exact measurements. How many tablespoons of this or how many cups of that, when what I was trying to teach her was to feel the food. I wanted her to learn to listen to the dish. To understand when the food says, "alright, that's enough." You see, we cannot cook without heart. A recipe is not something to be followed with scientific detachment. If we cook like that the dish will never have character. The book of Genesis tells us, [T]he LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living soul. The cook must breath his/her soul into the dish in order for it to live, and if not, the dish remains lifeless, dead. The breath of life comes not from the cook book, but from the cook.

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