Tuesday, July 14, 2009

This is my first entry into this blog MorselsandMore and I wanted to name it something catchy and different, but something to do with food…not as easy as one might think.

The definition of morsels according to The Free Dictionary (freedictionary.com) is
1. A small piece of food.
2. A tasty delicacy; a tidbit.
3. A small amount; a piece: a morsel of gossip.
4. One that is delightful and extremely pleasing.

Wow! That’s a lot to live up to, don’t you think?

I’m putting myself in the position of supplying you with something food oriented that’s tasty (maybe a recipe or review of a good ingredient or restaurant or website), yet it’s a small amount, - I take that as entries being short and concise, but that’s where the more comes in with the MorselsandMore name! And it all has to be wonderful and super enjoyable.

Ok, I’ll be working my magic here to include all those things. Maybe not all in one entry, but I think I can manage to pique your interest with some of my musings.

I’ll be including my own experiences and with the help of others, recipes, product info and reviews as a home cook, not a professional chef and photos by my partner Joanne Graziano. All photos on this blog will be hers unless otherwise stated and are under copyright.

Cooking and food has been a passion of mine for years. I grew up with an Italian mother who wasn’t enthusiastic about cooking, but what she made was fabulous. Her mother, my maternal grandmother, was the oldest of nine and was born in 1903, so she learned how to cook and bake for a large family and enjoyed it immensely. I, on the other hand didn’t show any interest in cooking until I moved out of the house at 17 and then became a professional cook around 22 years old.

By professional, I mean I learned on the job, not through classes at a college and by cook, I mean, I worked up through the ranks of doing lots of prep work – slicing, dicing, breading, cutting, mixing, piping for a few years before I could move to the stove, grill, fryer or flattop and really cook something.

In the first few years I cooked in professional establishments, I had worked in diners, four-star hotels and pizza joints.

Then, I moved onto nursing homes and assisted living facilities. Now, this is where the real cooking begins. No, don’t snicker. If you can make a person with swallowing difficulties enjoy their chopped or pureed food at each meal, you’ve got a gift. It ain’t easy, let me tell you. I have fed five-star generals, Catholic nuns and monsignors and little blue-haired ladies. You gotta watch those with the blue hair. They let you know what they like and what they don’t, believe me!

By the time I had left cooking as a burned out (think crispy bacon!) cook, I had been managing kitchens for several years and the fun of creative, delicious food construction had moved to someone under me. I was the bean counter, making sure we weren’t going over budget and everyone was washing their hands and holding educational inservices for staff. It was boring.

Best thing about getting out of the cooking biz? Wanting to cook at home again! So, here I am, nearly a decade out of the commercial kitchen and wanting to share the things I’ve learned since I was 22 and started cooking.

So, stay tuned and take a culinary journey with me, won’t you?

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