It took me a long time to be okay with not being a perfect cook, or a perfect baker. I guess it’s in my nature to want to be perfect at everything. I’m not a perfectionist, but I expect certain things in my life to be perfect. It’s just the way I roll.
Its been a long road, a very long and bumpy road. I still have hiccups and set backs, however I’m now in a mostly good spot to be okay with imperfect. Especially in the kitchen. I know that some people are born great cooks and some people have to work their damn asses off everyday. I’m the latter. Everything I do in the kitchen comes from hard work and determination. It comes from blood, sweat and tears. It comes from many burnt meals and many trial and errors. What I do and create in the kitchen comes with purpose and thought. It may not taste great, but I did put lots of thought into what I make.
My family has been very patient with my experiments. Sometimes I hear many mmmmm’s and God this is so good. Other times I hear nothing. The silence years ago would have killed me. It would have meant failure. It would have meant that I was a horrible cook unable to make anything edible. It would have meant that I should hang up my apron and never return. Honestly it would have been ruin for the walls that I cooked up around me.
Slowly, I have learned that what I cook doesn’t have to be perfect. If it doesn’t turn out I make notes and fix it for the next time. If I serve a meal that no one likes, I don’t care. Really, what I do in the kitchen is for the soul purpose and loving and enjoying food. It’s for creating and experimenting. It’s for using ingredients I love and enjoy. It’s about the smells that waft out. it’s about the surprise ending. It’s about playing and having fun. It’s for the pure joy of cooking.
Today I had one of those days where I had to accept imperfect. My youngest babe’s birthday is today. I wasn’t going to do a cake, but with his big eyes he begged for a minecraft cake. Of course I was going to make the kid a minecraft cake! After going to the gym and running errands and doing some chores, I set out to make a simple cake. Honestly my heart wasn’t in it. It’s Monday and I’m tired; but if baby wants cake, cake he shall have! I made a simple yogurt cake with the intention of making a minecraft face. Well I thought the cake was done. I decorated after it cooled. As you can see from the picture, I obviously didn’t have my Picasso game on! As I cut into the cake I noticed what every baker fears, the cake hadn’t cooked all the way!
So I had an ugly uncooked cake. Well, maybe if I had put my mind to it and planned a little better things would have turned out well. My kid was still impressed and he loved that I did that for him. Sunday for his party, we’ll have a better cake. I will think about it, and plan it. I will prepare and make time. I will not rush. Sunday I will march right into the bakery and demand what ever cake my baby wants!
Today though, well today was imperfect and I’m okay with that. If we all we’re perfect what kind of culinary world would we live in?