Well, Deb's away on vacation, and I'm having blog withdrawal. I miss our correspondence, and Deb's updates on what she will be focusing on for the next post. Her absence has caused to me reflect on many things - things about which I've become aware over the many months that have passed since the birth of our blog.
I have always loved food, and the creativity involved in the myriad of recipes brought forth in my countless cookbooks and magazines. I have spent hours upon hours in my kitchen, chopping, dicing, stewing, braising, and really preparing dishes that take all day, and a laundry list of ingredients to prepare.
Deb's posts, her recipes, and her style of cooking and preparation have really changed the way I eat, and have inspired in me a completely new appreciation for food - particularly in produce. In the past, I preferred cooking labor intensive meals. I gained a certain satisfaction in that. In contrast to that, Deb has taught me the beauty in simplicity. Under her careful guidance, she allows the ingredients to speak for themselves, gently coaxing their greatest attributes out of each one. I have gained a completely new appreciation for cooking as a result. I am endlessly so impressed with each recipe she shares with us - and what she can do with just a few ingredients - many which I typically already have on hand.
Case and point - last night I had a wonderful dinner at the HoHoKus Inn in New Jersey. I had Arctic Char with confit, horseradish foam, Chiogga beets and arugula jus. Don't get me wrong - it was delicious. This whole molecular gastronomy thing is interesting with all of the foams and such. When I was in Spain last summer, I certainly experienced my share of "foams". But again, Deb's style has made me appreciate the pleasure in leaving the ingredients alone, and allowing them to shine through their freshness - celebrating them for what they are.
So - thanks, Deb, for showing me how to really appreciate food.