Joy in the kitchen

What tasks do you enjoy the most?

For me, it’s my knife prep work. Not only do I avoid the pre sliced and pre packaged, I look for challenges–like acorn squash and rutabagas. I sometimes buy unsliced artisan bread and slice-able sausages specifically so I can use my knives.

That’s one kind of joy in the kitchen for me.

Ray

6 Likes

I’m certainly better at peeling and chopping than I am at cooking anything, so I guess there’s more pleasure with those tasks.

3 Likes

It’s not a matter of whether I enjoy it - but mise en place prep work is often relaxing for me after a crazy day at work. So I suppose the relaxation is enjoyable. :slight_smile:

10 Likes

Making bechemal sauce. I’m quite an impatient person and I’m always thinking.
I find the act of having to gently melt butter and add flour and then slowy add milk and continually stirring; soothing. The fact that it looks unpromising and then comes together, very satisfying.

I love making risotto for the same reason. I yold no truck with quick methods for either of these dishes.

4 Likes

When the preparation, especially bread or cake cooks in the oven, seeing the transformation and the smell, after working on the dough…

4 Likes

and the smell, coming out of that oven can be intoxicating . . .

4 Likes

I have three top favourites:
Chopping as it gets me ready to cook by prepping and deciding on shapes and sizes.
Pounding meat or grinding spices relaxes me after a long day.
Combining the spices and waiting a few minutes for the pleasant aroma to lift ftom the pan is very rewarding.

2 Likes

I, too, enjoy prep work. Especially for a big holiday meal. Alone time in the kitchen, juggling several dishes and a large roast is a lot of fun for me.
I’ll cook a Thanksgiving meal for 50 if left in the kitchen to my own devices with the groceries, my choice of music, and a glass of wine.

4 Likes

That’s awesome so we are all heading to your place for Thanksgiving this year.
Thanks for the invitation !
Lol

4 Likes

My satisfaction is having the simplest recipes that deliver the best in flavor for the least amount of work. I like cleaning as I go so that the kitchen is >90% clean when I sit to eat.

image

5 Likes

Yes… cleaning as you go is important. I like to have all the prep dishes clean before sitting down to eat.

4 Likes

Just a glass of wine? :wink:

5 Likes

I thought this thread was going to be more about Afternoon Delight in the kitchen.

Sad.

LoL. Love ya Dr. Ray!



But to be on topic - I do enjoy the knife work in prepping. I think for me it’s more about, once I’m done, just seeing all the different veggies lined up in their respective piles, all ready to go.

A close second is that moment when a whole picanha or big steak hits the pan (“Sssszzzzttt!”) for searing before going into the oven to finish.

4 Likes

Trimming meat. Immensely satisfying.

I really enjoy getting “flow” going when cooking a complicated menu by myself. I love the logistics-thinking you have to do under pressure.

I love the moment of putting mirepoix into a pan, and admiring the bright contrast and neat little squares.

I love the fruit prep for making jam. Local, seasonal fruit is one of the great joys of my life, and having pounds of it heaped in a jam pot is a thrill that never gets old.

I get a lot of joy from grilling. These past 2 years of living in suburbia with a backyard grill have really upped my skills. I also love cleaning the grates afterward (which is funny because I hate cleaning up generally, and when I cook big meals often make a huge mess.)

Finally, assembling and weighing ingredients for baking is very pleasurable, probably because it’s a precursor to baking, which is my favorite kitchen thing.

4 Likes

Folding and pleating dumplings.

5 Likes

I like the chore of washing dishes . And then the prep otherwise known as mise en place . Time for a relaxing glass of wine or two before cooking . There is no rush in my house . Relax and enjoy. Cheers .

3 Likes

Sometimes the joy for me is just "being there. All the smells as I scurry around–putting things together. Especially when they come together.

Ray

3 Likes

You’d do great on one of those FoodTV show like “Chopped”. My kids say I should try but I’m sure i’d fold like a wet knapkin under that pressure/stress.

2 Likes

:blush:

My wife and I would stand together at the table talking as we made jaozi. It was an event.

3 Likes

Yeah, plus I love competition!

2 Likes
Help cover Hungry Onion's costs when you shop at Amazon!

Bessarabsky Market, Kyiv. Ukraine
Credit: Juan Antonio Segal, Flickr