Into The Pressure Cooker

Misc. musings • 31 Oct 2007

I have been experimenting in the kitchen for the past five hours enjoying my last several weeks of domestic bliss. I am standing beside a hot, hot stove, alone with the love of my life. No, I do not refer to my new husband, who sits on the couch enjoying Sports Center. I speak of shiny pots and pans, hanging from my baker’s rack like glistening culinary soldiers, my razor-sharp knives, ready to spring into chopping action, and glass bowls filled with succulent raw ingredients.

This “domestic bliss” will last just another week and a half. I am about to embark on a lifelong personal and professional desire: culinary school. After almost a decade toiling in the real world, it occurred to me that there is only one path to professional utopia: spend the next few years in a downright ambitious culinary program.

I find that it is no longer enough to be a very good home cook and I will not continue to grow if left to my own devices. I need professors, like-minded peers, and a professional setting in which to learn. It is exhilarating to know that in a few short years I will be armed with an arsenal of new abilities and gastronomical knowledge.

I have spent the past few months anticipating school, wondering what the halls of the Culinary Institute will offer. Will I learn to prepare goats brains? Will I get to taste test unidentifiable spices while blindfolded? Will I perform at the level of excellence the school deems necessary to move forth with a culinary degree? Will my nerves prevent me from making the most of my once in a lifetime experience? Will my competitive streak get the best of me? Will the school’s required meal plan cause Mike to go hungry over the next two years? Will I really have to wake up at 2am for “Breakfast Cookery”?!

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