To Cook

In every family, there are those few people who you admire their knack for cooking. Be it your grandma, your mom or your bbq king uncle, you just can’t wait for the next family get together so you can once again savor their signature dishes. I am so lucky that I belong to a family that knows what good food should taste like. Only the freshest ingredients and never settle for mediocrity.

My Lola Mercy is one of the best cooks ever! But, I’m sure we all have grandmas who are the best cooks. She makes one mean Sisig, her Lasagna is out of this world and her Cherry Cheesecake is heaven! She also makes a wonderful Avocado Ice Cream.

If there is another person who can match, even top my lola’s cooking, that would have to be my lovely mother. Her Kare-Kare is addictive, her Chicken Cordon Bleu with a side of Cauliflower smothered with white sauce is mouth-watering, and her take on the classic Spaghetti is the best I’ve ever tasted (Italliani’s can kiss my butt!). My mom’s Escabeche is just…amazing (my dad loves it!).

“Voila! A pot pie. Wholesome, warm, healthy. That's, of course if you can live without the cream sauce. Personally, I can't. I mean, what's the point?

But there is one dish that every time I taste reminds me of home, and of my mom and my lola (because they cook the dish equally well). The feeling I get is kinda similar to the one Anton Ego gets after taking a bite of the Ratatouille. Lolz! At first, I didn’t want to learn how to make the dish because there was the feeling of comfort when somebody else cooks that meal for me. But then I realized, why not share the same feeling I get with the people who matter to me? It took time to prepare, but the result I got was completely worth it.

Lengua Con Champignon (drooling right now)

I know it’s a once-in-a-year kind of dish to eat because let’s face it, it’s not exactly figure friendly. But that only adds to the appeal of the dish, the desire for it. I’m so happy to finally be able to cook it and continue the family heritage of cooking excellence! Yeah! Lolz! You know, I wasn’t supposed to be the next cook in the family. It was my younger sister who got to receive all the training (being the constant helper during parties and meal preparations) from my mom, lola and aunts. I think it’s the passion that pushed me to learn how to cook even if it was all by myself. The kind that if I was asked, what do you want to do for the rest of your life, I would confidently answer, COOK. I’d probably be the first male cook in the family (but I do have uncles who can cook).They say, there are certain reasons why men’s cooking tastes better than women’s. One is that men aren’t so parsimonious when it comes to the ingredients. Another is that a woman’s emotion goes into their cooking which can be a pro-and-con kinda thing. I mean, based on my observation, male chefs right now are more popular than female ones. Lolz!

“I like to cook -- it's my meditation. One aims for perfection in one's life, but one doesn't find it very often. For me, this is about as close as it gets.”

But, I am just that, a cook. Not a chef. There are so many people who are good cooks, but so few who are good chefs. It’s become my dream to become a chef, but being a cook right now is satisfying in so many levels. However, being a cook, one of my weaknesses is baking. I don’t bake. If I did, then I’d be a baker. Lolz! Unfortuntely, not being able to bake limits my ability to create desserts. But that won’t stop a good cook! So here’s one of my favorite desserts that I’ve made in a while. I didn’t have strawberries so I used bananas instead.

Panna Cotta (with an extra, extra drizzle of chocolate sauce and slices of Bananas)

Tasty, delectable, scrumptious, saccharine, gastronomical, and luscious; some of the nicest, boldest, sexiest and best sounding adjectives are found when describing good food. They don’t have to be expensive, they don’t have to be gourmet, they don’t even have to be calorie laden. Good Food is whatever tingles your taste buds and gives you a feeling. Food, and cooking for that matter, is just as simple as that...

“You know, people can sleep, or they can gamble. Or they can even make love when they're miserable.

But I think that most people eat when they're happy. I like to see people happy…

P.S. Next time, I’ll tell you about how hard it is to take a good photo of food! Lolz!

P.P.S. Quotations are by Mr. Linderman of Heroes

P.P.S. I’d like to thank Paolo Mendoza for the letter “Z” in my Lolz!


FruityOaty said...

I LOVED reading this post. I've always enjoyed your food stories the most. :) YUM! I hope you do more food entries. As for me, I think I'll return to food blogging. I realized recently that the passion for blogging disappeared when I stopped doing food blogging. For me, I wasn't really writing about food... it was more like, hmm, a metaphor for expressing stuff/feelings... happening in my life.

But I can't be bothered with writing or giving recipes (too much work). And that would mean "real food blog"... which my site isn't. It's more of a... halo-halo. :P

I come from a family that loves to cook and eat. My Mom is pretty much famous among her circles. At various points in her life, she used to do food catering as a business.

My Mom is the "cook". My sister is the "baker" (professionally trained). I'm more of an all-rounder (cooking, baking... and EATING, LOL). My Dad... he just eats and... boils water! He can't even figure out how to cook rice properly or cook Kraft Macaroni and Cheese from the box, HAHA!

Please keep on food blogging!

joyfulchicken said...

Q. What's the difference between a cook and a chef?

A. Around 1000 dollars a month :-P

jaiskizzy said...

i can't cook. taga-kain na lang ako.

kingofchocolates said...

Can you serve the Panna Cotta this Saturday? Hehe!

Wuy! Chicken Cordon Bleu! Bwahaha! Alam mo na yun.

yosiboy said...

yummy! kelan ako makakatikim nyan?

Ozy said...

I love cooking too, except I don't cook that often. It's fun and therapeutic.

If I remember correctly, there was only one scene with Linderman cooking yes?

Ang dami pala niya nasabi, di ko napansin.


paolo said...

gastronomical indeed... you just made me hungry. Had you had strawberries though, they'd still go well with those bananas. Yummy!

Btw, the Merlin Club list will be up tomorrow - Guess what's the Merlin club? Lolz!

Oh ..and're welcome. =P

Jenn said...

Saw this link thru the Merlin Club.

Wow, this post made me salivate! =) Hope I can taste the dishes you just shared!

Poli said...

Who cares about the food not being figure friendly? The Lengua con Champignon looks delicious and it deserves to be devoured!

I also try to cook once in while. The results are well,OK. My problem is that I don't know how to estimate ingredients.

Jigs said...

@fruityoaty: I am so jealous that you can cook, bake and all! Probably in the future, when I get myself a great oven, I'll try to bake! lol!

@kingofchocolates: Based on your reaction to the Panna Cotta yesterday, it seems you loved it too! lol!

@yosiboy: one day kasi dapat sumama ka sa mga dinner parties namin!

@ozy: Linderman's lines about food and cooking surmized my whole philosophy in cooking. I loved it!


@jenn: thank you for visiting! Who knows maybe you will someday.

@poli: I suggest you keep on cooking and cooking. The more you cook, the more you get the hang of estimating ingredients!

Juice said...

I wish I can cook as well and bake as you :D the only thing I'm probably proud of is I'm an awesome drink mixer, I'd make a supah dupah bartender. Hahaha =P

I hope someday you can cook and make something for me :P hihi. Panna Cotta? YUMMEH!!!

acey said...

jigs, i think i'm gonna ask you to adopt me and let you introduce me to your relatives who can cook and feed me! hehe. =D

bulitas said...

wow! this post made me hungry!

i love to cook, but lately i've been a fan of quickie meals since i always find myself short of time to work. =)

damdam said...

i love cooking, i wish i can have some recipes para ma pirata ko yang mga yan.. hahaha!

Dale Bacar said...

aha, now i know whom to ask if i need cooking advice.
also the panna cotta looks yummeeeeeeeee.