The Fun of the Work...

Business or pleasure??? What are our intentions here? Each day we awake or come to, assess the day, proceed on the journey into our work place and embark on an endeavor which is all about cooking(for those lucky souls who cook anyway). We must then ask ourselves what is it that we are here for and why do we do it?...As we are enjoying the final marked days of summer in the northwest, albeit probably another good month or so, we are able to say with a relatively straight face that we are here to cook for the business of course, but really it is about the sheer pleasure of cooking and achieving sustenance that drives us most. A bit slower in pace...a bit less chaotic...a little less crazy and not so much business at hand that we do not have time to focus on what is front of us. We are able to enjoy the craft as it is and as it should be. We can seek the much needed refuge in a simple task like making fresh pasta and cutting it by hand. Filleting a whole fresh fish and really inspecting the muscle structure and analyzing the protein. Working with the local produce and then simply preparing it and to be able to enjoy the beauty of a single technique is quite a relaxing adventure. Another much-appreciated and soul-soothing process is the technique of butchering, then marinating, then grinding some fresh meat only be made into a wonderful and beautiful sausage or salumi. There is something extremely and emotionally therapeutic about it. Something quite surreal as you watch it transform into a completely different beast over time. The slow baking of a delicate tart or loaf of bread which renders you impatient as it bakes, and yet the virtue itself allows you to overcome the urge as you realize the end product will only be that much better is something that almost can not be put into words...you have to experience it! You do not get this fulfillment in some damn office. The summer finds us toying with many a heirloom tomato or stone fruit only to end up as a centerpiece on some fortunate diner's plate, or...perhaps just a tasty snack for one of our cooks during service. Hell yea! It also leaves us with a yearning for something deeper and comforting as we head into fall. I believe that the fun of summer leads us mentally and spiritually if you will into fall and winter by means of planting the seed for something greater in terms of comfort only to sprout and blossom in the midst of shortened daylight and somewhat colder climates. Maybe not, but that's what I feel and I am sticking to it for now. So I ask you, "business or pleasure"?...you decide. One's art is another's income. I seek the beauty in both as they seem to feed off of each other. Pleasure however is what keeps me alive and the business provides the means to sustain it. That is how I roll...How about you? Think about it.


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