Am I the only one who talks to their food? I don’t mean expressions about food that are said out loud – like “Man, that looks disgusting” or “I really want to eat that entire cherry pie”. In my limited research I asked Robert if he talked to his food. His response was, “uh, no”. I have realized that maybe I am alone in this. But maybe there are others out there like me who talk do talk to their food – I mean really interact with food as if it may actually, well…talk back.
When I first started in the kitchen at Krause Dining I found myself trying to make deals with the food I was working on. You know, giving it a little encouragement to do what I needed it to. “Okay creme brules, you are looking lovely, but I need you to set up without overcooking. Do you think that is possible?”, “You souffles are going to give me an awesome rise aren’t you?” Yes, it was a silent response but overall cooperative, we got along. I took a parental tone with my dishes and they were mostly obedient subjects.
Now that I have a limited role in preparing food, I spend more time actually serving it at Esquina. I still try to direct the food though, “Pizole, please do not slop on the rim of this bowl. Don’t you want to look nice?” Imagine my surprise recently when I felt it answer me, “Well, you are the one carrying me. If I look sloppy it’s your fault not mine.” Yikes, such disrespect! But you know, the pizole was right, I couldn’t fault that fact – my shaky hand had more to do with it than anything else. I may not have liked it the response, but I grudgingly agreed. But what happened to my obedient subjects – adolescent attitude?
Working at Esquina challenges my goals of sensible eating. The food there is fresh and healthy and I love it, but all I really want to eat every day are the chips. I like them plain, with salsa, with my rice bowl, or most preferably with the habenero-tequila cheese dip. I could eat them for every meal. I walk past the container of freshly fried chips like a hundred times a day. All things in moderation, I say, but chips at every meal doesn’t seem like a good idea. I have limited my chip eating to only after my shifts, and no snacking while walking by. But alas, I am slipping. I have been plucking the most beautifully seasoned one off of the top of the stack and quickly chewing it up as I walk through the kitchen. I am not proud of myself. I had to get tough and tell them, in my best mommy voice while pointing at them, “You are not the boss of me!” It felt good to regain my sense of control. I was smiling as I walked off. But I swear I heard in a tiny voice, as I was almost out of ear-shot, so that I had to turn around..yes, we are.
Next time I think I’ll write a letter.