Friday, November 18, 2011

Cooking and Writing - Kitchen Becomes Canvas

Cooking and creative writing have so much in common. They both involve an artistic element, a creative thought process, a promise of salvation in troubled times, and a brilliant dose of personal motivation once you're done.
The urge to write something and to cook something have the same kind of creative drive. When I have a poem brewing in my mind, a story boiling up, or a free-write that i have to let out, I feel that urge to just begin typing. As I learnt the basics of cooking and experimental recipes went well, I began creating my own. The idea of creating a recipe just brims up like a creative urge that needs to be expressed. The kitchen becomes the canvas and the artist paints with flavors.
Just as I put words together while composing a poem, I find myself putting ingredients together to create a recipe. It's an intuition that how the flavors would turn out together. Sometimes, it is a recreation of tastes that I have tasted somewhere. For instance, two weeks ago I found myself recreating a recipe of sweet and sour spicy chicken wings that I had at a diner. I figured that mixing honey, tobasco sauce, soy sauce, and tomato paste would recreate most of that flavor. Adding vinegar sharpened the flavor furthermore.
It came as a strange revelation but cooking is a catharsis when you need it. I discovered that a couple of years ago, when I began cooking to break a nasty spell of depression. I realized that instead of poisonous venting and ranting in diaries and gothic poetry, I could do it creatively and "tastefully" still through cooking. I found myself cooking the most delicious of dishes from the Italian and Spanish cuisine. A blogger friend from Spain, Benjamin was his name, had sent me a delicious Paella recipe and I ended up rejoicing the experience and drowning the depression in that juicy seafood paella. Ever since, the kitchen adventures have been endless ...

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