4/26/10

Try this ...

Part of the benefit of working with people like my boss is that he’s excited about food. Not just excited where he gets a new froofy gourmet ingredient that he saw on the Food Network. That’s affected, not excited. Not excited, where he has to go out and buy all the flavour of the week type ingredients/recipes that come and go like horrible fashion fads in the food world. That’s being a follower, not an innovator.

Boss Man gets excited about food in the way that a young kid gets excited about a play date with his best friend. He’s excited about food like a painter is when she sees the perfect inspiration and has to run home and draw it. You see, for Preefer, food is tied deeply into his memories and the people he loves. And tied intimately with that excitement for food comes the deep need to share said food.

When I started working here, on the first day even, he took me on a grand tour of the kitchen, and started describing the various dishes that Sacred Chow makes. “Here, try this,” he’d say, and pop some divine little nibble into my mouth. That was where I started my long-standing love affair with the Mama’s Soy Meatballs. The very first bite was a little grenade of flavour that washed over my taste buds, and had quite tantalising aromas wafting through my head.

Mind you, if he knows that you specifically don’t like something (in my case, that’d be bell peppers, eggplant, beets, okra, seitan of any sort, tempeh … and the list goes on), he won’t force it on you, but then it’s sort of like “Such a shame that you won’t enjoy this with me.”

And the thing is, he has that relationship with all the kitchen staff. “Have you ever had Spaghetti Squash? No? Here, open.” And in pops another little burst of flavour to encompass your senses. “Try this. And that. And that. And that too, while you’re there.” The best part is that we’ve all begun to learn more about food, because the captain of our ship is so skilled at making us fearless to get in there and just give it a try. The cool thing is that even when I make something “out there” or unusual (in the eyes of my coworkers), they’re still interested to give it a shot, because Boss Man encourages us to keep an open mind and even more open mouth!

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