• Kate


Saturday night, after having a wonderful outing with very good friends in Chicago, I sat down to work on a project at home. I was only supposed to check one simple thing and that turned into two hours attempting to get questions answered and troubleshooting. I was scavenging the internet for answers to like problems and nothing I was finding was helping. I was worried the project was simply failing.

After hours, seemingly fixing a few issues and just hoping the others were not important, I had to close my computer and let it be. The only factor at the moment was time, I needed to leave it alone and let it do its thing. Come back later and hope that the information I wanted would then be available.

I was frustrated and extremely stressed that this wasn’t going the way it should. I know how I can be in these situations and I needed to take a step back. There was nothing else I could do and it wasn’t doing any good going in circles. I put the computer away and turned on Netflix, I needed to watch something light-hearted to calm me down. For me, that is any sort of cooking documentary, and this particular night was Chef’s Table.

I know, it sounds corny, but Chef’s Table relaxes me. Everything about it is executed flawlessly. How the creators combine music, imagery, and dictate the speed at which the cooking happens is captivating. It is like watching a well-choreographed dance. Chef smoothly exchanges materials and moves above the plate or through the kitchen like a seal through the water.

Or it is a seduction. Between the food and the plate. Between the Chef’s experience and life story that brought them to this moment.

A line of bright sauce effortlessly appears on a pristine white plate. Things are constructed precariously, you are not sure to eat it or display it in your home.

I marvel at how the minds of these extremely talented men and women work, how they maneuver flavors to paint this tapestry that takes food and turns it into an experience. They call on classic flavors from summer days that is supposed to transport you to a day at the beach, wind on the water and your feet in the sand. Toes curled and sun-kissed skin.

Will Goldfarb, a pastry chef who learned to cook in Paris and was a front runner for the avant-garde desert scene in New York in the early 2000s, being the head chef of a dessert only restaurant and bar. After years of bad reviews, he finally received fame and attention for his upscale “grown-up” desserts. However, the attention pushed him away. His restaurant closed and he left New York.

He and his wife found their way to Bali, Indonesia where after some time he began to cook pastry again. This particular episode was a mastery of this man re-finding his passion with the fresh ingredients American pastry chefs are so used to accepting from a box. He was involved with harvesting Cocoa, with scraping the shores for salt, and the Palms for sugar. He expressed that after being able to work with fresh chocolate, nutmeg, cinnamon...how was he ever supposed to go back?

It was beautiful. This man found his peace in paradise. It is enough to make you think if he can do it...why can’t I?

At the moment My Tiny Cook Spot is my peace. Something happens to me when I am in the kitchen or when I am dreaming up a cocktail or meal. My mind is like a canvas, starting out stark white and slowly colors are being thrown at it. It looks a mess at first. Yellows dripping over blues. But when it is finished and I step back an extraordinary blend of hues have formed. Others may not be able to understand what it is supposed to look like but it fills my soul and begs to be created.

My only problem….I am running out of people to cook for.

This past week I was lucky enough to be able to have two different friends over to enjoy Garbanzo & Black Bean Patties and Cucumber Jalapeño G&Ts.

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