Tag Archives: recipe

First time lucky

The more I cook, the more I realise that my progress always peaks at attempt number one, then charts a steady downward curve  each time I return to that dish, rather like a soufflé leaves the oven a dome of fluffy perfection and steadily shrugs into itself while it waits to be served.

This phenomenon does little for my self-esteem as it warps my perception of myself as a cook. One nondescript weekday evening, I might effortlessly pull off a star-studded three-course meal and present it with a flourish to my unsuspecting Spaniard. When this happens, I spend the whole meal in a cocoon of wonder and self-adulation, imagining the cooking career that can’t fail to stretch ahead of me. I recount to my poor boyfriend the unbelievable ease with which the lipsmacking food was prepared. I give each new dish on the block a gold star and mark it as a candidate for Things To Cook For Friends. I mentally file tips that could one day furnish the dreams of lesser aspiring gastronomes.

When said friends do come over to eat, I’m secretly so far beyond smug it’s just a blur in my rear view mirror. In my head, we’ve finished the meal and I’m receiving my food Oscar and delivering a tearful acceptance speech. Perhaps I’m so keen for the food to live up to the inward hype I’ve created that I can’t help but mess it up. Perhaps my swagger causes my hand to slip, making the cooking sloppy. Whatever it is, the dish is never as good the second time round, and the quality just deteriorates from then on.

Now, we’ve heard of body dysmorphia and even muscle dysmorphia. But could I be the first British woman to be suffering from – gasp – culinary dysmorphia? Are there other silent sufferers out there, all, like me, believing they’re great cooks when in fact they’re just foodie flukes?

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Hors d’oeuvres

Well, being an extrovert, you’d have thought I’d have jumped straight onto the blogging bandwagon when is passed by some years back. In fact, despite working in new media, I’m quite the technophobe. Add to this my commitment issues with a regular writing gig (an odd phobia for a trained journalist to harbour) and perhaps you’ll see why I’ve hung back from the crowd – until now. But hey, I’ve always been a late starter, so now that blogs are deemed passé (yes, get me, I am bi-lingual), I’m going to give it a shot.

So, I’m a greedy twenty-something girl whose stomach rules the rest of her body and soul. If I’m happy, I congratulate myself with a little something. If I’m bored, I liven things up with a biscuit medley and a cup of tea. If I’m sad, I make cathartic chocolate brownies, faintly salted with tears. If I’m ill, I eat through it. I work in the food industry, cook up a storm in my tiny, ill-equipped kitchen and write a mean recipe. I’ve got a Spanish boyfriend who is my biggest – and fullest – fan, and whose tortilla still beats mine, grrr. And here I’m going to write about my obsession with food and anything else that occurs to me while I’m on the subject. I might even get round to writing down a recipe or two, or describing gastronomic jaunts and favourite foodie haunts. If you don’t like food, you’re in the wrong place. 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