What It's REALLY Like Being Married to a Chef #1
As most of you may have read in my last post I've had a slight case of beauty burnout lately so I've decided to place myself on a much needed beauty hiatus.
In the interim I thought it might be fun share one of my other great loves and that's my love of food and the culinary industry as a whole.
My husband, Todd, is a professional chef and has been in the business for over 20 years. It's an unforgiving industry that can break even the most dedicated to their craft and at times beat you to the core. But if you can stick with it and push through all the BS it's one of the most rewarding experiences I've ever witnessed.
Todd is the Executive Sous Chef at Flank located in Waltham, MA. You can follow all of his delicious posts on Instagram profile @gochefyourself
The Mother Sauce
Todd once compared me to the preparation of Hollandaise Sauce. At first I thought oh no, here we go with the “chef-speak” again comparing women to food, but after doing a little research itmade sense.
If you are unfamiliar with hollandaise sauce here’s a quick culinary history lesson. Sauces in French cuisine date all the way back to the Middle Ages and there were hundreds of sauces in the culinary repertoire. In the 19th century, Antonin Carême (aka “King of Chefs and the Chef of Kings”) published a classification of all sauces into four families, each of which was based on a mother sauce. This classification was later updated in the early 20th century by Chef Auguste Escoffier to five mother sauces in order to modernize Carême’s elaborate and ornate style.
In basic terms hollandaise sauce is an emulsion of egg yolk and butter, usually seasoned with lemon juice. Sounds pretty easy, right? Much like with a woman, that's not always the case.
Hollandaise has been widely considered a minefield in the culinary world. It is notoriously difficult to make and requires immense skill and knowledge to prepare. Near-constant agitation or stirring is required and usually executed with a wire whisk. If properly made, it will be smooth and creamy; rich and buttery in flavor with a mild tang. Too much heat and the yolks will curdle; too little heat and an emulsion will fail to form. Step a little out of line and it blows up in your face. Are you starting to see the similarities?
Just like the sauce, I tend to run lukewarm but there are definitely times when I sway from feeling energized and motivated, ready to take on the world to just wanting to curl up in a blanket and shut out everyone and everything around me.
A successful sauce calls for near constant stirring and women require near-constant stimulation on varying degrees of mental, physical and emotional support (although I wouldn’t suggest using a wire whisk to achieve this). My own needs are much like those of most women and my man goes above and beyond to make sure they are met each and every day.
He always treats me with respect and makes it a point to communicate openly and honestly no matter how difficult the topic may be. He has learned my boundaries and always shows affection no matter how bad of a day I’m having. And if I’m going on and on about my day whether it be about work, the new pair of shoes I just bought or the latest rom-com he always gives me his undivided attention.
Because no matter how trivial it may seem to him at the moment, he’s realized that what I have to say matters. It's part of who I am and what matters most to him is me. Combined with his kindness of spirit and generosity of heart and a dash of mind blowing sex thrown in for good measure he’s definitely on the right path to creating a recipe for success.
Mind you, there’s no denying Todd certainly has his work cut out for him and it definitely takes an exceptional man who can satisfy all of the diverse needs of today’s woman on a regular basis. Because let’s be honest women can be unpredictable, myself included. I realize that I’m fortunate enough to have one of those remarkable men in my life and I never want to take that for granted. So at the end of the day when all is said and done he keeps practicing, because even the greatest of chefs have been known to have a bad night and accidentally burn the bacon*.
*a little tidbit - this is Todd's favorite interview question when hiring staff because anyone who's ever worked in a kitchen has at one time or another burned bacon. If they answer no he usually calls them on it and eventually they fess up.