I WANT YOU for a cooking challenge.

Uncle Sam-Scary ass dude!

Do we all swing back and forth between a feeling of great confidence and utter ineptitude? I certainly do. I know that we all do. It’s a sign that we are growing and moving outside of our comfort zones. Which is a good thing! It can also be a scary thing, especially if you take minor failure personal. Most dangerous is the human propensity to compare ourselves with people we really don’t know anything about. Thus, I am constantly trying to remind myself that I only need to compare with myself. That is what I tell my photo students over and over. And yet, it is probably one of my most hard learned lessons.

I am not sure that I am always the best cook, despite my enthusiasm. After watching Heston Blumenthal’s pizza video, that requires 4 hours of preparation,  I suddenly felt like what I know about cooking is a big fat zero. And what the hell am I doing writing a blog on it! BECAUSE it’s a learning experience, a boundary stretcher, an arena that provides me with lots of room for growth. This is stretching everything creative within me and techincally, my writing and story telling ability, food knowledge and kitchen skills, discipline, organization, scaling my ideas to a manageable level. Most poignant is reinventing myself photographically after 16 years, becoming a beginner again. The job entails finding a photographic style that is more than just a documentation, but represents my artistic vision. There are so many questions that go through my head about this blog.

It’s all humbling.

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PROPOSED CHALLENGE!

While my readership is modest I would still like to encourage more active participation. Thus, I would like to propose a challenge. Let’s get together and get creative with our cooking by attempting to invent some new dishes.

Step 1

Go to the store, look through your cookbooks, grab random ingredients from your food stores and pick out a combination of 5 ingredients that you have not used and/or would like to experiment with. Add them to the comments below.

Step 2

Then choose a list of ingredients that one of the other contributions have added and see what you can create. Make a full meal using all the ingredients or create separate dishes for each. Up to you. Feel free to use the ingredients in combination with other food items. The idea is to be able to create new and edible dishes.

Note: Go ahead and use existing recipes to get inspiration, but if possible try to come up with something somewhat new.

Step 3

In 3 weeks I will call for the results. Have your recipes and photos ready. Even your failures are of interest. Let us know why you chose said ingredients, what did you learn along the way, what was the most difficult…

Note: You don’t need a mega camera to get decent food photos. You can use your mobil, pocket camera etc. Outdoor light works very well. You can also use tin foil and white reflective services to even out the light in your photo.

GOOD LUCK!!!! Can’t wait to see the results.

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Story about Uncle Sam.

Uncle Sam is a character that represents the US Govt. widely used during the Vietnam draft. One of my first memories is sitting in my parents Monte Carlo, in an adjacent parking lot to Taco Tia, trying to eat my taco’s while Uncle Sam glared down at me from a full size mural. I couldn’t read at the mere age of three, but I knew this guy wanted something from me. But, just what was it? When I asked my parents who this guy was they answered, Uncle Sam and left it at that. All I thought was wow glad I don’t have an Uncle Sam cause this guy is just plain scary!

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