Born to be a chef ?

@topffer (30548)
France
June 11, 2017 7:36am CST
I wanted to have an eggplant caviar for my lunch yesterday, and I realized that I had no more garlic. I bought the garlic, and also some little black olives that would be perfect for that dish, and I prepared the caviar today. I have a good trick to make it more tasty, I add the juice of a lemon to the eggplant puree at the end. I just tasted it while cooking the meat to go with it and it tastes... flat. I am realizing that I forgot the salt and pepper. Have you days like this one for me where you think that, despite of your best efforts, you are not born to cook ?
16 people like this
17 responses
@pgntwo (21708)
• Derry, Northern Ireland
11 Jun
Is that like the Italian "caponata di melanzane"?
4 people like this
@topffer (30548)
• France
11 Jun
I have never heard of this one. Having a look. Not at all. There are eggplants in both but they certainly taste very different : the caponata is cooked with vinegar, capers and green olive, it probably tastes a lot bitter than the caviar.
2 people like this
@pgntwo (21708)
• Derry, Northern Ireland
11 Jun
@topffer I have looked up the aubergine caviar: even that brusquest of chefs, Gordon Ramsay, has a recipe for it. It sounds delicious!
Gordon Ramsay prepare aubergine caviar
2 people like this
@topffer (30548)
• France
11 Jun
@pgntwo I have never been in one of his restaurants, but I was a great fan of Kitchen Nightmares and the way he was bashing these poor restaurant owners. I am sure he is a top chef, but he is also a good comedian. I do not think that anyone is born to be a cook and own a restaurant anyway. I will have a look at the way he prepares it. I learned the recipe with my mother who was preparing it traditionally. There are easier methods, but I stick to my family recipe. I am impressed. He does it quite the same way than I do, and he is not born here. I do not put thyme, I think it would be a bit too "thyme flavored", and I add some basil and cumin, but it is the only differences. And he adds some lemon juice. He is really a good cook for a Scottish man.
2 people like this
@Susan2015 (18644)
• United States
11 Jun
I really don't like to cook. And don't cook from scratch.
3 people like this
@topffer (30548)
• France
11 Jun
I like to cook when I receive people but not when I am alone. And I do not know where was my brain today to forget salt and pepper.
1 person likes this
• Pamplona, Spain
12 Jun
I can cook a bit and cakes and pies are my best ones really. I like to watch Gordon Ramsey as well sometimes. Casseroles are my best thing as well.
2 people like this
@topffer (30548)
• France
12 Jun
I am very bad when it comes to pastries. I know only how to do a few easy traditional cakes. Make me think that it is the right season for a cherry clafoutis. For Ramsay, I had fun watching his Kitchen nightmares on a cable tv channel and I regret that they stopped to produce it. We have a MasterChef in France, but I have never been very interested by this one. I watch times to times the equivalent of "Come dine with me", "Un dîner presque parfait" here, it is the kind of reality show where you realize how some people can be hypocrite and nasty just to win a stupid game.
1 person likes this
• Pamplona, Spain
13 Jun
@topffer I find "Master Chef" too artificial and when they did one for the children I found it un horror. Children should be showered with love and not with you have not done this or that even if they know if they know its not for real. Shouting never got anyone anywhere I know I have been there.
1 person likes this
@topffer (30548)
• France
13 Jun
@lovinangelsinstead21 Well, sometimes you have to shout, and children will listen if it is something unusual. I have no children but I have noticed that with the children of my friends.
1 person likes this
@LadyDuck (121497)
• Switzerland
11 Jun
I have good days and so and so days in the kitchen, but I usually do very well. I could have been a cook, but it's a very hard job.
2 people like this
@topffer (30548)
• France
11 Jun
I have seen some pictures of your dishes, and you are a very good cook and a very good pastry cook together
2 people like this
@LadyDuck (121497)
• Switzerland
11 Jun
@topffer Thank you. It's in the genes of my family. One of my cousin is a good Chef.
2 people like this
@Inlemay (17341)
• South Africa
12 Jun
seasoning can make any dish just horrid - or the lack thereof!
1 person likes this
@topffer (30548)
• France
12 Jun
True, and it has to be done at the right moment. I put coarse salt on the eggplants before cooking them in the oven, it does not give the same result than fine salt later.
1 person likes this
@Inlemay (17341)
• South Africa
12 Jun
@topffer not everyone is born to be a chef, but some people can cook well - that is me, I can cook and bake well
1 person likes this
@topffer (30548)
• France
12 Jun
@Inlemay Congratulations I can cook quite well, but I like to do it only when I receive people, and not when I am the only one to eat.
1 person likes this
@celticeagle (115084)
• Boise, Idaho
11 Jun
Never heard of eggplant prepared that way before. Interesting!
1 person likes this
@topffer (30548)
• France
11 Jun
It is a typical dish from Southern France. It can be eaten cold on a slice of bread, or served hot with a meat or a fish. I have learned to prepare it the traditional way, but it is not easy, and many people are buying it already made in their supermarket.
2 people like this
@celticeagle (115084)
• Boise, Idaho
11 Jun
@topffer .....How interesting. I really need to get some international cuisine knowledge.
1 person likes this
@topffer (30548)
• France
11 Jun
@celticeagle If you are interested by this recipe, @pgntwo has given a link to a video in his response where Gordon Ramsay prepares an eggplant caviar approximately the same way than I do.
2 people like this
@gilggg (2688)
• Israel
11 Jun
We are all just human beings and can sometimes forget unintentionally a component in a recipe, If it happens very rarely you are definitely meant to cook But If this happens to you often then this is a problem ...lol
1 person likes this
@topffer (30548)
• France
11 Jun
Not that often, but it happens, and I just experienced it again. There is a lot of components in this recipe, I did not forgot any except the more basic ones.
1 person likes this
@gilggg (2688)
• Israel
11 Jun
@topffer Well I'm sure next time you wont forget it..lol
1 person likes this
@topffer (30548)
• France
11 Jun
@gilggg Who knows ? I think it is the first time I forget them in this recipe. Alzheimer?
1 person likes this
@much2say (35403)
• United States
14 Jun
I can cook, but I am not a creative cook. I tend to follow recipes and then change them up later on, sometimes. More than being a chef, I think I was definitely born to eat .
1 person likes this
@much2say (35403)
• United States
15 Jun
@topffer Extremist indeed! She sure changed your eating lifestyle (but for the better, right?). One cannot deny great taste though - we like what we like. Would we rather a restaurant be healthful or tasteful (preferably both of course!). My mother put so much salt in her cooking that my father thought all restaurants did not have enough salt in their foods !
@youless (87127)
• Guangzhou, China
12 Jun
I think I have a talent to cook. Usually I will think and imagine my cooking in my mind before I really go to cook. So when I am really cooking, I will not be in a mess.
1 person likes this
@topffer (30548)
• France
12 Jun
Great chefs have a talent like yours to divide the job to do between people in their kitchens. You would have no problem to be a chef in a large restaurant.
1 person likes this
@youless (87127)
• Guangzhou, China
12 Jun
@topffer I think so, too
1 person likes this
@skysnap (17581)
11 Jun
haha i hate to cook. not sure how this is going to work out as i am single.
1 person likes this
@topffer (30548)
• France
11 Jun
I am also single actually, and I do not like to cook when I am alone. I should have better gone to a restaurant.
@skysnap (17581)
12 Jun
@topffer I try to cook and keep myself busy. that works for me these days.
1 person likes this
@YrNemo (8474)
16 Jun
I was enjoying your caviar dish here, tasting it really the moment you mentioned 'lemon juice' - until you said you had forgotten the salt... A true anti-climax!
1 person likes this
@topffer (30548)
• France
16 Jun
Yup, major failure. I added fine salt, but it is not the same than when it is slowly cooked with coarse salt.
1 person likes this
@prashu228 (22856)
• India
12 Jun
Wow dish sounds interesting, I will try it. Will search for the recipe online, hope it works..
1 person likes this
@topffer (30548)
• France
12 Jun
If you are interested by this dish, pgn has given a link in his response to a video where Gordon Ramsay explains how to prepare it. He does approximately the same way than me. You can eat it cold on a slice of bread or hot with a meat, a fish... or whatever you want for your meal.
@BettyB (4288)
• Summerville, South Carolina
12 Jun
I've turned out many disasters in the kitchen over the years, but I still love to cook. I usually scrape the mess into the trash and start over.
1 person likes this
@topffer (30548)
• France
12 Jun
You are better than myself. I like to cook when I receive people, but not when I am alone. I try to do as fast as possible, and it ends times to times by a disaster.
@BelleStarr (31954)
• Portland, Connecticut
12 Jun
Yes I do and on those days I just grab something from the freezer and surrender to the inevitable.
1 person likes this
@topffer (30548)
• France
12 Jun
Lol, it was not that serious, but it also happened to me a few times.
1 person likes this
@tzwrites (3806)
• Romania
11 Jun
Yeah it can happen to anyone. But you can just add the salt and pepper afterwards right?
1 person likes this
@topffer (30548)
• France
11 Jun
Normally you put some coarse salt and olive oil on the eggplants at the beginning and they cook slowly in the oven like that. Well, I added some fine salt.
@Hate2Iron (7325)
• Canada
11 Jun
According to my family... that would be every day and I'm fine with that. I would much rather bake!
@topffer (30548)
• France
11 Jun
If my family was telling it every day, I would tell them to do the cook themselves and I would see how good they are. We can do a deal : if I do not forget a component I am not a too bad cook, but I am a very bad pastry cook and I let that to you.
@PBKING (1492)
• India
8 Jul
I like to cook fast foods only which are not time consuming...lol
I can cook a lot of stuff pretty well when I know how to. I'm lazy though, so I really only stick with easily prepared stuff that isn't too...