Cooking releases my creativity
I love to cook. It both relaxes and challenges me. When writer's block taunts me, I leave the computer and go into the kitchen and just cook – anything that comes to mind with the ingredients I find. Like writing, my cooking is very creative. I get bored cooking the same things or in the same style all the while, so a little different bit of this or that goes into the pot – That is how I discovered, by myself, that our popular (Jamaican) dish, stew peas, cooked with oxtail instead of pigstail or stew beef is an outstanding dish.
Just one problem. My family doesn’t always appreciate these innovations. More than once I have come into the kitchen to see them examining the pots with hesitation, or rolled eyes when I identify the 'strangeness' before them.
I have to confess that my alternative cooking ideas are not always fully realized. Sometimes the dish is spectacular, sometimes not at all. One of the problems is that while I am long on ideas, I am short on the presentation side of things. Usually because, by the time I have finished cooking, my creative juices are flowing and I am anxious to get back to writing. So, that's it. Too soft? Too hard? Too bad. Mostly the taste will be good, but ….
So, here I am — in a family of all good to great cooks – some with tertiary culinary training – totally unappreciated. I must be the only mother/grandmother, whose offspring will never say: 'I long to taste some of grandma's cooking.' Most likely, behind my back and when I am no longer here, they will tell hilarious stories about meals I have prepared and their reactions.
I don't care. Cooking is an adventurous exercise — just like writing. Each 'spoiled' meal has probably helped me finish a story or flesh out a new idea.
At least, they will probably say, (I hope): 'Grandma could tell a great story.' And read my books without rolling their eyes.
There's more where that came from!