I’ve been cooking since I was six years old, not out of love of cooking, but out of necessity. The most advanced thing I did as a child was gutting a fish and steaming it.
But there was no love.
Starting with college I stopped cooking because the necessity was no longer there.
Then it came back haunting me after leaving college. As before, I didn’t think of cooking as something fun, didn’t use recipes, just did what I remembered.
Then at some point in my thirties I started getting interested in cooking. Maybe because I studied chemistry, although I don’t work anywhere remotely connected to chemistry, I found making food interesting, finally, from the perspective of exploration.
Recently I started to find greater curiosity in how to make food from scratch. Scratch meaning, making your own yogurt, or even your own yeast (as in sourdough).
I currently live in Brooklyn, where I grew up as a teenager and returned to as a thirty-something. Here in Brooklyn, at least in the hip parts of it, a lot of people care about originality of food (and everything else). So although I started out cooking as a six-year old with no interest in what I was eating and where it came from, now I care about the source of the food, how I can tailor it to my taste and that of my family, and most importantly, my connection to the food. For this reason I try to do everything manually unless I have no time. Food, and life, has more meaning when you are connected to it, through learning, through preparing it, cooking it, and, of course, savoring it.