I’m a compromiser. In day-to-day life I am a rule keeper, goodie-good type but when it comes to creative endeavour the rule-keeper in me keeps quiet and the rebel comes out to play.
I often find mid-recipe that in fact I don’t have all the required elements.
So I throw in something else or several something elses and ‘make it work’. This is probably why one infamous family member coined the innocent sounding enquiry ‘did you use a recipe for this?’
I do have certain friends who will leave the kitchen mid-recipe to buy the thyme or rosemary as I throw in some mixed herbs or some other herb that ‘might be similar’.
It is not superior food knowledge or a well-developed palate that gives me such abandon with carefully written and tasted recipes – no. I can’t quite put my finger on exactly why I do this – laziness, over-confidence, lack of organisation, not caring, being prepared to eat most things, cooking for boys who are prone to add lemon-pepper or tomato sauce to everything….
Whatever it is I am sure it is why I am limited to what I shall affectionately call – ‘low-brow’ cooking. It’s hard to throw in a compromise when the recipe has ingredients you’ve never heard of and you aren’t sure if they are a herb and liqueur or some fancy Italian sausage.
It’s the same kind of thing that holds me back from making jam and bottling fruit – if I can’t even be exact about following a recipe can I really trust my ability to sterilise the jars correctly. And what about pectin????
As you can see I have my quirks. So what about you will you get into a compromising situation in the kitchen or do your morals and ethics ensure a perfectly executed dish with a proper balance of flavours every time?