Wednesday, January 20, 2010

What this blog is about..

Starting a foodcentric blog has been a long thought-about notion for me, but for whatever reasons I've never really felt compelled to create or keep up with one. However, inspiration has hit and the time has come - the catalyst being a cursory look-over I was taking of the new changes to my alma mater's website. They are now offering a Bachelor's of Science in Culinary Arts completely online and being that I am currently a housewife (with no immediate plans to change that status) who would like to start the next step in my higher education, this news has been of particular interest to me.

I was browsing their admissions requirements when I noticed that for returning students wishing to apply, if more than 10 years have passed between the time of graduation and application, they must include a cover letter and resume demonstrating how they have kept their culinary skills current.
Now, I've only graduated 5 years ago but it got me thinking about what I'VE done in the meantime to stay relevant.

I've come up blank...

In my last place of employment, I was sous chef of a wonderful little (but successful) catering establishment in central Virginia. Absolutely loved it. But a great financial and professional opportunity came along for my husband, so we capitalized on it and moved our family to Kuwait (where we still reside). So for the past 3 years I have been a full-time stay at home mother.

The understanding has always been, I will stay at home with our children until they are all school aged BUT I can always work if I so choose. So while it's been quite sometime since I've been in a kitchen and I miss it immensely, I know that for the time being, my presence and attention is better deserved by my children.
I can't deny that I love being the one to drop them off at school and pick them up in the afternoon. That I enjoy having dinner on the table for my husband when he gets home from work.. So it hasn't been all that bad but, I digress..

I find myself in the unsavory place of being out of touch with the foodie scene and culinary world. I've become stagnant. A creature of routine. A slave to my small children's limited preferences in dinner entrees. I have tried new recipes and have attempted to widen my repertoire, but it's not enough..

As my kids get a little older, I feel they're more and more capable of expanding their palates. Of at least trying to eat more.. mature foods I guess you might say. I think it's time to branch off from old standbys like spaghetti, mac'n'cheese, pizza, breaded chicken tenders.. I'm not talking escargot or beef wellington or anything like that but.. I'm ready to cook meals with more variance rather than base my weekly menu by foods I know the kids will eat w/o putting up a fight. I like to think they'll thank me later for it..

So I'm going to blog about my home-cooking exploits. The experiments, the successes, the failures & the tried and true. My aim is to create a portfolio so that when I'm asked what I've done to stay relevant, I have something to SHOW rather than try to parlay the past several years spent as a housewife into a convincing case for experience.

Also, in the interest of making things as educational as possible, I'm going to research every thing I post about. The history and origins of the ingredients and dish itself. I will include interesting bits of information as I find them, along with recipes and tips.
I'm going to read more blogs of my peers, more food oriented publications, and will rifle back through all my old textbooks. And since I've spent the past few years in the middle-east, barely bothering to experience their food scene, I'm going to make more attempts at acquainting myself with arabic dishes and foodstuffs. I won't be in Kuwait forever so I really need to take full advantage of my unique position as an expat and a foodie.

The time has come to get my mind right.. Who's hungry?