Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Diet and Nutrition Stuff

A number of Minnesota Public Radio listeners have written in asking for more info on the diet and nutritions issues I mentioned during the show today. I'll be writing about that stuff throughout the rest of the week. Meanwhile, through my prior writings on diet, health, and fitness.


Ron W said...

Heard you on MPR this AM. Agreeing completely with your philosophy on cooking at home. I'm in the grill business, an amateur chef, and a good cook. Here are three rules that I've learned the hard way:

1) Learn the basic techniques for whatever style of cooking you most enjoy. If it's barbecue, learn to make kick-ass ribs with only salt, pepper and smoke --- then start playing with marinades, rubs, sauces etc... If it's omelettes Use Julia Child's suggestion and buy two dozen eggs, make 24 omelettes and throw them away. (Keep going until all the eggs are gone, even if you think you've got it). You'll have a skill for life. Same applies to making bread/pizza, chocolate cake, or whatever.

2) Master only twelve dishes. But really nail those twelve! This will get you through life with an impeccable reputation and a lot of happy, well-fed friends and family. It's even better if you pick twelve things that taste pretty darn good even if you screw them up. Like pizza, beef stew, barbecued chicken.

3) Get good tools. A great grill, sharp knife, or quality mixer is a true revelation.

Jim Leff said...

Good suggestions, Ron, thanks.

And I like how you (and Julia!) suggest learning "techniques". That word carries some baggage; we feel like unless we go to culinary school and learn Technique, we will be mere pretenders. But part of the distinction I like to make between home and restaurant chefs is that there are no skills a home chef MUST learn. Rather, decide for yourself, figure it out yourself, and train yourself. And remember that it's vastly better to cook "wrong" but deliciously than correct but dull. Lavish in creative wrongness, and find ways to hone your wrong approaches!

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