|Type of paper:||Essay|
|Categories:||Food Happiness Relationship Business plan|
There is this small restaurant that my friends and I used to go to once in a while during weekends to catch up. The hotel was on a beautiful hilltop that faced the lake. The cool breeze, a nice environment and a good view of the lake are what attracted us to the hotel. The meals in this hotel were usually of French cuisine. The meal that we usually had at this particular restaurant was an omelette, but this particular day we found a different meal that I had never had before. On this special day, as I would later term it, we got spaghetti with chicken livers and lemon. The meal is unusual since it did not exist anywhere in a printed recipe. At first, I was very curious about the taste of the meal since it was a type that crossed my mind the very first time. Coincidentally, this time around we had gone to the restaurant, not for the usual catching up, but to discuss a business that we intended to start up. The business which involved starting a wine shop now thrives at the bottom of this hilltop hotel.
Since we had not booked a table before coming, we were to go on with our discussion as we waited for the meal to be prepared. We laid down our ideas and where we would set the business and came up with a solid budget for the business. We already had the capital to start the business and after the discussion, we would immediately embark on setting up the business. We had now finished talking about the business when the meal was served. Since I could not be patient enough I tasted the food first and broke the news to my colleagues. Funny enough, I took several bites before finally revealing to them the sweetness of the meal since they were still looked in their own negotiations. The meal was so delicious that I remember requesting for the ingredients and how it had been cooked. Since the girl who served us was well known and familiar to me, she was open to sharing the recipe with me. We ate the meal while contemplating about our business and how best we would advertise it to our customers.
The meal was one never tasted before that I remember my friend asking if some could be packed for him to take it to his wife and daughter. We had to wait an extra hour for this meal to be prepared. Within this hour we continued talking about our families and past experiences. We made fun of how we operated sometime back when we were starting up our careers and the struggles to find something to identify with. After my friend's meal was brought we paid the bill and left cheerfully, promising to come again.
The one thing that makes this meal memorable is when I decided I would prepare it for my family the next day. I collected all ingredients that include 400g of spaghetti, five eggs, three big Tuscan chicken livers of about 90g, 90g of Italian raw lean ham, four garlic cloves, a lemon, 180g of grated pecorino cheese, seasonings of salt, pepper and nutmeg and 130g of olive oil. With the ingredients set, I collected the utensils I needed and kept them in place.
I started off by cooking the spaghetti using Italian cuisine. I prepared the sauce while the spaghetti was cooking. My cousin offered to help me with some duties but I request her to just leave me to do it myself. I had taken long before preparing a meal for my family and therefore I wanted this meal to be special for them. I then put the olive oil in a saute pan. Meanwhile, I cleaned the chicken livers and cut them in small slices. I peeled two garlic cloves and crushed them with salt on board, and then cut the ham into fine strips. All these steps were carefully based on the recipe shared with me at the restaurant, making sure I would not miss a step. Remember I wanted to prove a point in the kitchen.
I then warmed the olive oil and threw in the chicken livers. I carefully added the ham and the crushed mixture of garlic and salt. While cooking, I added freshly ground pepper and the roughly grated lemon peel. I cooked all the ingredients above for roughly three minutes, making sure that the chicken livers were not overcooked since that would spoil the flavor.
In the meantime, I beat one whole egg together with four yolks in one big bowl. In the same bowl, I added the grilled cheese and a sprinkle of nutmeg. When the spaghetti was cooked, I drained it and put it in a large, deep, hot dish. I made sure I did not drain the spaghetti dry. I left some water that it was cooked to make it wet. I rapidly poured the mixture of the egg and cheese in the saute pan that had the hot olive oil and chicken livers, ham and garlic. I then thoroughly mixed these ingredients away from the heat. I blended the pasta and the sauce while mixing it up like salad. The eggs cooked from the heat in the pasta. During this time I had warm deep bowls and my four family members ready for the special meal from the self-proclaimed cook. I served the meal hot and presented it to my guests-family.
This was that fine evening when the whole family was at home for dinner. Normally, we would take our meals at different times since my parents arrived home at different times, depending on their shifts at work. My father is a medical officer and my mother is a registered nurse, and sometimes have night shifts. Despite their tight schedules, my parents made sure that we shared dinner together every Wednesday. My cousin and grandfather were home too. We were six in total, and this meant great family time. My grandfather offered to pray and we started eating.
I wanted to gauge my success by evaluating the looks of people as they tasted their first chunk of the food. I focused much on my father since he was the one who usually judged the meals in the house. The glowing face and smile were enough to tell me that I had passed that test. There were five minutes of deadly silence in the house as people concentrated on their bowls. It is my grandfather who broke the silence. "I didn't know you can be such a nice chef", he said sarcastically. I told him that it is actually my friend at the restaurant who had given me the recipe and I decided to try it. My mother also complemented grandfather's words. Grandfather then started explaining how he met my grandmother and impressed her through the first meal he cooked. They met at a restaurant in France where they had attended a peace summit. Grandfather approached this beautiful, calm lady and they started interacting, after which they exchanged contacts. During their interactions is when grandfather learned that grandma came from Italy. They kept contacting each other and soon started dating. One evening, he invited her to the house, prepared her Italian cuisine, and that is the way he set the tone for their relationship. The favorite family cuisine turned out to be Italian.
The meal I prepared made us converse till late in the night about the culinary arts of different cultures. My parents got to talk about the different cuisines they have had, and which they enjoyed most. Grandfather narrated some stories of his past that I knew little about. I came to learn why the family adopted Italian cuisine as their main culinary art. The meal reminds me that it made the family so cheerful and willing to talk about culinary arts and the best hotels around. The meal made me have the insight to try out different cuisines for my family once in a while.
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