This post is one of my funnier stories about myself; originally posted in September 2007
I was not always the brilliant chef that I am today…there was definitely a time when Wolfgang Puck would have banished me from ever picking up a spatula again. Any specific examples of my culinary faux pas?
As embarrassing as this is to relate, I can still clearly recall the first time I attempted to make mashed potatoes. I was 17 years old; my high school life was a very busy one, so traditional “Marie Calendar” type meals were reserved mostly for holidays and very special gatherings. In short, mashed potatoes were not often on the menu at home, and I had not yet discovered the wonderful little packages of potato flakes at the grocery store.
So I decide one day to make my mother a nice meal, including mashed potatoes. I did not bother to consult a cookbook, or a cook for that matter on the proper steps to creamy potato delight. I skinned the tatoes and cut them into pieces. So far, so good…right? That is when it turned south; I did not know that I needed to boil the potatoes to make them soft for mashing…I just went at it like a banshee.
Did I get anywhere? Haha..after 10 minutes and getting myself completely frustrated, I found myself a new tool: the meat tenderizer. Yessiree, I pounded the P out of those tatoes! I remember my mother arriving home in the midst of my senseless bludgeoning and laughingly demanding what I thought I was doing. That was 12 years ago, and she still chuckles when reference is made to my foray into country cooking.
Now that I have made a little bit of a fool out of myself, there is a moral to this comically loquacious tale…
Many times we are so eager to jump out into life and go for our dreams that we forget there are steps to take. You have to start small if you want to grow…from babies to roses, everything begins small. And if you try to skip steps or take short cuts, you may end up with a bowl full of potato carnage.