Wednesday, September 26, 2018

If There's Not A Mess On The Floor, You Ain't Cookin'?

by Crowbar (writer), Los Angeles, May 26, 2008


Welcoming to BrooWaha another side of Crowbar, the enigmatic Chef Phatatouilee

It’s a hundred and one degrees with no breeze. The air in the apartment is stifling while the fan blasts nothing but ventilated desert onto your sweaty skin. The only thing on your mind is penguins and ice cubes. So how can you even think of going into the kitchen to cook dinner?

While most people at this point are reaching for the phone, I am happily sweating away in the kitchen for the fourth hour straight; chopping up carrots, whipping up sauces, and waiting for the water to boil, so I can add in something delicious into the bubbling waters.


Because I understand the Zen of cooking. It’s sort of like a runner’s high.

Now, I’m never gonna run a marathon to find out, but I can tell you that there is a level of peace that comes from being in the kitchen for hours and you are never gonna feel it if all your meals come from a box.

The sad fact is that most people eat out these days, especially in California. With three hours a day stuck in traffic, long hours at work, and addictive reality shows, who really has the time to cook. Every street has at least two fast food joints, coffee shops that offer quick snacks, and supermarkets catering to dinner in a bag with aisles that are stocked with ready to heat and eat meals. Who has time to slave in the kitchen?

Well, those who don’t cook will never know the joy of cooking. Like in the cartoon Ratatouille last year, there is a wonderful sensation from mixing a bit of this with a bit of that and finding a new taste sensation, because while nobody likes to cook, everybody loves to eat. We wouldn’t be the fattest nation in the world if we didn’t like food. We wouldn’t spend money on gym memberships we never use, weight equipment gathering dust in the corner, and health products gathering dust in the medicine cabinet if we didn’t want to lose weight so that we could eat some more.

Let’s face the truth: we love food, but we don’t like to prepare it.

For those of us who do love to prepare food, and I’m not talking about those of us who think Betty Crocker and the Gorton’s fisherman are perfect role models, there is a wonderful sensation from spending hours in the kitchen preparing new and familiar dishes.

On most of my days off, if I’m not trying to score drugs down on Venice Beach, I am in the kitchen for hours preparing meals for the week or for the day. I make my own hummus and guacamole from scratch, I research new ways to make dishes, or I’m experimenting with drink mixes. So, I figured it was time to add this part of my life to my writing.

So, from this day forward, there will be a new aspect of my personality appearing in the pages of BrooWaha, and his name is Chef Phatatouille. Now, Crowbar will still write articles about the random things that interest him, while Chef Phatatouille focuses on food and drink, sharing tips and secrets to those who love to cook.

And for those who don’t like to cook, well give these recipes to those in your life who have been feeding you because you had to have gotten fat somehow.

About the Writer

Crowbar is a writer for BrooWaha. For more information, visit the writer's website.
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3 comments on If There's Not A Mess On The Floor, You Ain't Cookin'?

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By manny osborne on May 26, 2008 at 07:21 pm

If somebody clean up the mess I'll cook.

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By Schittzu on May 28, 2008 at 11:27 am

Good, I won't have to do the cooking when I get there.  As you mention Ratatouille, I have a great recipe I got from a Provencal cookbook I bought while in Provence.  If you are going to make it, you are going to make it right; it is a Provence specialty. 

We vacationed in Croatia last month where we had Djuvec, which is Balkan Ratatouille with pork and rice.  I found a very good recipe.

I do have one question, when I did the cooking you refused to do the dishes saying if I hated doing them, why should you?  (A mother never forgets.)  Who is doing the dishes?  I hope you aren't saving them until I get there?!!

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By Schittzu on May 29, 2008 at 01:19 am

I have a drink for you to try, Venezia.

When we went to Bavaria to find an English-speaking driving instructor so I could finally get my German driving license.  [A word of advice for anyone planning to relocate to Germany.  Go to a reciprocating state, get a driving license in that state because you can then just transfer over to a German license without a problem.  I wasn't that smart and my American license had expired when I wasn't paying attention.]  We wandered into the Southern Tyrol of northern Italy where there aren't any Italians. 

While in Klausen we strolled into the village square for a cup of tea before walking back to the campgrounds.  We had tea, everyone else was drinking something orange in a red wine glass.  We asked the waitress and she said it was Venezia (Venice) so we ordered one, interesting.  It is Prosecco with a splash of Aperol (an orange liquer) served with 2 ice cubes and a slice or orange.  The ice cubes were a surpise because Europeans don't do ice.

That can be your first Drinks experiment.  We've had some other interesting drinks over time but I don't know if the ingredients are available in the States.

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