Editor’s Letter

1 Jun

By Chris Garbutt

The Story of Food

There is a photograph of me in the kitchen of my childhood home in which I am stirring something in a pot with a rubber spatula. I can’t be more than 10 years old. I’m wearing a blue apron, the kind that has a loop for your neck and pockets around the waist. I’m quite sure that I’m making the first recipe I ever wrote down on a pad of paper and tucked into my apron pocket – chocolate fudge sauce, the kind that gets chewy when it hits the ice cream, the kind you have to reheat each time to make it soft again.

The apron was made by a close friend of the family, and it had a large C embroidered right at the heart. Someone saw something in me that perhaps I didn’t realize myself, but I took to cooking with gusto. I made cookies from a recipe by the Cookie Monster in a Sesame Street book. I treated my family to apple pancakes.

I tried to learn to make an apple pie, standing attentively by my grandmother’s side, taking notes. She wasn’t very helpful with details:

—Add some sugar…

—How much?

—Enough to make it sweet.

But that moment, I learned much much later, was the heart of great cooking. Yes, learn the basics, follow recipes. But make them your own.

I didn’t think of myself as much of a cook until in my 20s, I would watch a roommate cook night after night – it was nothing complicated, but I could see a level of comfort in his cooking. There was something magical in the simple way he poured olive oil. It was he that reminded me that the secret to good cooking is not so much talent as it is feeling comfortable with food and loving what you do. And cooking is one of the few things that I can do during which I will forget everything else and live in the moment.

Every recipe tells a story. Every dish, every meal, every feast, every ingredient has something to say. That is why we started this website. We love cooking, we love eating and we love to know what’s behind the food we love. With this site, we hope to explore the stories behind food and the people that make those stories.

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