Like most people I love food, but I’ve noticed that since moving to Chicago my love has become more of an active passion than a simple passive love. Some may say I have developed into a food snob, but that’s simply not true as I have simply opened my mind to what food is and how it should be served. It’s actually a very important question that far too few people ask though that does appear to be changing with books like The Omnivore’s Dilemma and the greater presence of celebrity chefs.
Since I can get pretty much anything I have ever wanted in Chicago I have become spoiled. Boudin noir, chicken feet by the pound, fresh garlic, every spice you can imagine, veal bones, and all kinds of other things that I take for granted in the big city are very difficult to come by out here in the country. It sucks, but I deal because you don’t need those things to make a fantastic meal. All you need are a few high quality, and preferably in season, ingredients and a little time. For instance, last week I made my parents a very simple meal of a roasted chicken on bread with roasted brussel sprouts and zucchini. Couldn’t be any simpler since all of the ingredients were roasted at the same temperature and all you had to know how to do was truss a bird.
Personally, I follow a “meat lite” type of diet. I try to stay away from using meat as the main focal point of the meal and instead try to use it as more of a flavorant in a dish that consists mostly of plant-based foods. It’s amazing how far a few slices of bacon can go in a large dish…
So, go out and experiment and learn to love food and cooking. It’s a great skill you can impress your friends with and it will teach you to deeply appreciate the food you put in your body.