If I was still at school, teaching at the beginning of the term, we would be concentrating on basic information and skills, so it occurred to me that I could talk about that sort of thing this week.
So many people are afraid of working in the kitchen and especially letting their children make ‘stuff’. There is so much that is potentially dangerous with knives and heat and things. This could be one of the reasons that most people who have done any cooking start with chocolate crispy cakes and then move on to buns and cakes with the adult using the oven.
But, for a lot of people there is the added fear – what if people don’t like what I make? Food and making a meal for the family can be laden with all sorts of emotional overtones. I have even had comments from someone about being a bad parent because they couldn’t cook! Which is ridiculous but understandable in a world where everybody’s social media profile is full of food pictures of meals eaten and created.
In the food room, dishes and cooks never failed, they just made something that was not as the recipe intended and we re-named the dish. Cheese and Tomato marbled bread sounds so much better than a pizza where the dough got stuck on the table because the tomato sauce was still a bit warm when it was added and wouldn’t lift on to the baking tray as neatly as hoped so looked like a sticky mess! We re-shaped the dough and cut it into small rolls and sprinkled a bit more cheese on top before baking. Chicken Bites instead of Goujons. Sponge slices instead of Swiss Roll. Raisin Buns instead of Scones. Re-naming dishes creates some amazing things. Sometimes even better than the original. Garden Treats instead of Vegetable Buns!!
Top Tip – when making Pizza, place bread dough onto baking tray before filling so that you don’t have to lift it and spoil the shaping.