Cook like your life depends on it.

OMG!!! What has happened to the cooking shows these days? I might be a little old fashioned, but when did cooking shows become such intense competitions? Rachel Ray? Jamie Oliver? For God’s sake…Julia? Where are you when we need you? I just finished watching a show that involved yelling, down -to-the-wire timing, crying, and a few downright nasty insults. I found myself screaming at the TV, “GET THOSE BABY CARROTS ON PLATE NOW! YOU CAN’T AFFORD TO LOSE THIS ROUND!!” What is this, cooking or WWE? I’m spent.

I started watching, okay obsessing, over cooking shows when I moved here to the jungle. My culinary talents while living and working in the US consisted of steaming some broccoli and microwaving one of those ready made dishes from Trader Joe’s. When even that seemed like an insurmountable task, Michael and I would opt for the convenient sushi bar down the street or the incredible wood fired pizza from Sammy’s. That, of course is not an option here. It’s cook or die, or at least get very used to rice and beans. Speaking of rice…the second day I was here in the country I offered to make some rice for my husband…and then I had to ask him how to make rice. I’m pretty sure I saw a look of utter angst in his eyes.

I’ve come a long way and am quite proud of my progress. I have put together a Thanksgiving meal starting with a live chicken. It was a long day but we put a beautiful meal on the table. I say “we” ’cause ain’t no way I’m killin and pluckin a chicken! I drew that line right away and have no plans to cross it any time soon.

We grow and raise a great deal of our own food and the days of buying my food in nice sterile containers wrapped in cellophane are a thing of the past. There have been some growing pains and a good deal of trial error, but all in all I’ve fallen in love with the culinary arts. The only drawback is that when I look in my pantry and fridge all I see are ingredients…nothing to eat! But it’s all worth it when Michael and I can sit down to a meal that consists of:  fish that Michael caught here in the gulf, a spicy arugula salad from our greenhouse, grilled pineapple from our farm, and rice from our neighbors farm, which, I am proud to say, I can now cook like a boss. If we have room for dessert it’s guanabana ice cream topped with fresh blackberries, both from our orchard.

I’m not going to win any awards or contests with my food but the sense of satisfaction is more than enough for me. And, if you come into my kitchen and start yelling at me to hurry up, and hurl insults and make me cry, I will promptly light your hair on fire and put it out with my cast iron frying pan. (Wow, that sounded kinda violent. Maybe I need to stop watching these cooking shows.)

Buen provecho! aka Bon appetite!

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6 Responses

  1. Jeannine Henry says:

    Loving every word. So glad my Mikey found you Lizzie.

  2. Christine Monteith says:

    I am missing all the fresh ingredients and taking time to concoct new recipes. Now that I’m back on No.Cal, I can find fresh organic food but it is not the same. The local Grocery Outlet had Costa Rican pineapples. I bought one & thought of you & M.

    • bethgensler says:

      Thanks for the comment Christine. We love having all the fresh ingredients. My next project is to make my own coconut milk from fresh coconuts!

  3. Robin Streit says:

    I like guanabana! What’s cookin tonight? No matter what, I’m sure it will be like your blog, absolutely fantastic!

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