My First Experience in the Kitchen
When I was younger, I dreamed of becoming a chef. My parents often fight in the kitchen because of the food when my dad dislikes the taste of mom’s cooking. I swore to myself that I would learn how to cook very well so that my future partner would not have to argue with me and maybe also share our cooking knowledge and skills together.
My dad, however, insisted that I am too young to learn cooking. For many years, he only allows me to observe him cook. All I did was to watch him in the kitchen. I studied how he prepared the ingredients, chopped meat and vegetables, sauté the spices and stirred it all together every now and then.
He always said that mixing is important to make sure the evenness of taste. Sometimes he also allows me to do the stirring. I particularly liked stirring when we were making custard cream because I loved its smell! Those were the kitchen moments I loved the most.
However, there were also not so good kitchen moments. There was a time that the fire became very big and it scared me to be in the kitchen and learn how to cook. Since then, I did not really want to go further than just watching. It took about a decade for me to overcome my fear of fire. .
When I was already 18, my dad finally allowed me to start cooking on my own. However, I had to ask him or my brother to open the stove for me. Unlike many others who start with a simple fried egg or other fried food, my first dish was already more advanced. The years of watching my dad made it easier to cook more complex foods like beef stew, sautéed vegetables, and even making a cake.
I never needed to use recipe guides or cook books. I have learned by careful observation for many years and then since I started cooking it was easy to even make up my own recipes and unique dishes. That is what I loved more about cooking, making it like an art wherein to express my creativity. After several years of experience in the kitchen, I can now make almost every food that tastes familiar and give it a nice new twist of my own style.
Nevertheless, I will not forget my first experiences in the kitchen – where I started and how my knowledge and skills developed; how I simply watched and waited; how I overcame my fears, and; how I loved and excelled in cooking when I finally conquered and am there being the master of the kitchen, creating whatever I like.
I wish that someday, the whole world could be just like the kitchen to me – that even though today I am but a learning observer lacking in knowledge, held back and battling with some apprehensions and uncertainty, waiting for approval of higher people for me to take responsibility of greater things; someday, I will conquer all places I go to, being the master of every space I walk through time, cooking my life according to my heart’s desires and dreams.
Indeed, the whole world could be just like the kitchen, or wherever it is you are excelling right now. You got there because you started somewhere, and all successful people started in the same place of humble beginnings. Whatever it is that you are deliciously cooking right now, it does not mean that is all you can cook. You can duplicate your success in other areas of your life by applying the formula you used for what you already achieved.