Monday, May 28, 2012

Getting Others to Feed You

Strawberries, hearts of palm, chocolate nibs
Many many years ago, as part of a job interview,  I had to write a review for a book that I had written or hoped to write some day. I immediately made up a title and concept: With Fork in Hand—A Guide to Getting Others to Feed You.

Since that time, I've done well at this task. For years, I reviewed restaurants, getting paid to eat out and pay attention. Later, I wrote a newsletter for a restaurant and got paid in meals at that restaurant. More recently, I took photos for a caterer in exchange for a lovely dinner. This weekend, I took several hundred photos of a privately catered event as a favor to the chef. In return, I received tastings on the job as well as a large take-home package.

Luscious little key lime desserts
For someone who enjoys food, as I do, this type of event is close to bliss. Not only did I enjoy some wonderful food, but I also got a behind-the-scenes view of what it takes to produce spectacular meals  for 40. I saw the floor plans, the schedule, and the menu. I watched skilled cooks and service people chop, chill, stir, arrange, garnish, and serve. And now I have dozens of pictures for my own projects.

I used to think that I really liked to cook. Now I know the truth: I really like to eat. If I'm the best or only cook around, then I cook. However, if another good cook is willing to feed me, I'm ready to go.

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