Friday, April 15, 2011

Sculpting with Spices

The heat haze above the skillet makes everything shimmer. There are little bubbles in the oil as I lean over and slowly upturn the small bowl containing a mix of spices. They hit the oil with a sizzle, the wonderful aroma of cardamom, cinnamon of nutmeg wafts through the air. Slowly I add the onions and stir until they are golden brown. Its time for the meat.

People often tell me I love to cook because I love to eat. I call bullshit. I love cooking because of the same REASON I love to eat...I love food. I love the preparation of it, I love the chemistry of two flavors mixing together to create something better than the sum of their parts, I love the process of taking different ingredients and forming a homogeneous whole, but most of all I love the expression on people's faces when they eat what I have prepared. Like most artists, good or bad, I cook for the reactions. In fact, I eat the least when I cook, because I want to spread the flavours around as much as possible.

Above: One Day, mai bhi....

Is cooking an art? I believe so. Of course that doesn't make me an artist, just a scribbler awkwardly holding a pencil and hoping that the chicken scratchings in the back of his maths testbook will someday lead to an object of beauty and innovation. And while I don't consider myself to be anything more than the lowliest student of this art form, I know I can be good because I cook out of love. Love for the food, love for the fed but most of all, love of the joy of creation.


Suranjana said...

if you are the lowliest student of this art, what am i? i guess i haven't still been born.

you ARE an artist when it comes to cooking. word from the horse's (read wife's) mouth.

Girl with 'Warped' Thinking said...

"I love the chemistry of two flavors mixing together to create something better than the sum of their parts" - words of a true artist, I feel. Because art is definitely not something invented, it is created out of things around us, inspired from them.