Wednesday, October 16, 2013

The Art of Cooking & Plating

I’ve picked up a new hobby, one that really brings me joy and also something I take pride in learning …and that’s gourmet cooking and plating. 

I love food, but not in the addictive sort of way.  I’ve never been controlled by fare, but I have grown to appreciate good flavors.  I have also learned the hard way that some foods just don’t mix well with others and some are better for me health-wise.  But when you discover the right mixture, the right portions, the right textures, the right consistency, and the right nutritional value, food can be quite enjoyable.   I’m building quite a list of unique recipes, though I’ve yet to write any of them down.

That brings me to plating, which is really a new form of art. I love art of all kinds: paintings, photography, music, sculptures, natural exhibits, nature reserves, literature, dance, design and film.  Creating a beautiful piece of art with the plating of food brings a smile to my face.  It makes the process of preparing, cooking and eating so much more enjoyable. My focus becomes more on the presentation and taste than the idea of eating.   

The last thing that makes cooking and plating dinner more enjoyable is the company.  Dinnertime seems to be something that once was the center of family communication, enjoyment and social interaction.  In today’s fast-paced world, dinner is often rushed, filled with processed fast food, or consumed on the run in our busy lives.  In most ‘family’ restaurants the volume of food seems to be more important than the quality or display.  While raising my children, dinnertime was an important part of our day, and it was the place I built the intimate relationships most with my family.  Now I’m alone and often eat in solitary silence.  However, I still cook most nights and now I’ve found the enjoyable art of plating. 

I lift my glass to the hope that one day I will find that special someone to share my new gift and a great meal.  Until then, I’m determined to enjoy the beauty of the art of cooking and plating on my own.

Till next time,
~T.L. Gray

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