I’m a bit of a sucker for chef memoir books.
Ever since Anthony Bourdain gave us Kitchen Confidential, I’ve found it hard to resist reading about the ins and outs of kitchen life.
You see when I was leaving school, I toyed with the idea of becoming a chef.
But the practical side of my decision making took over. Even as a completely inexperienced cook I could see that kitchen life would be tough. Long, anti-social hours, hard work and little pay.
And so I went off to university to study food science.
All these years, I’ve never questioned that it was the best decision.
So if I’m honest, for me the appeal reading gritty chef memoirs has been at least partly a little more validation that I wasn’t meant to be a chef.
Then comes along my latest book club book, ‘Spiced’ by Dalia Jurgensen and for the first time, I’ve found myself wondering what it would be like to be a chef.
Jurgensen weaves an engaging story of her career change from office worker to pastry chef.
Sure there are the usual chef war stories of burns, sexism and after-hours exploits but there is something in this memoir that I find lacking in most chef tales…
It’s hard not to be caught up in this pastry chef’s ‘passion’, for want of a better word.
For Jurgensen, there is a complete love of food and cooking and the joy that comes from knowing something you made brought pleasure or joy to someone else’s life.
And the lesson from ‘Spiced’?
Decisions based around doing what you absolutely LOVE are always the best.
For me, I love cooking, so maybe a chef career would have been a better decision than food scientist.
But I also love taking photographs, writing about my food and sharing it with my loved ones.
So on further reflection, food blogger sound much more like me
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