Cook With Friends, Damnit!
We've all participated in family dinners, one-on-one dates, school lunches, and solitary meals between work.
They all have their ups and downs and certainly will continue to happen in our lives. But other than talking about ways in which we consume our food, I want to purpose that we cook more with our friends.
I tend to think that eating doesn’t just mean consuming food for the sake of surviving, but more for the sake of living. I cannot claim this saying as my own, but I will definitely share it with you: The day humans learned to cook was the day we separated ourselves from the rest of the animal kingdom. Or in other words, the day we learned to cook was the day we became a cooler species than the rest.
That being said, I also tend to think of cooking as a form of art.
Like a painter, writer, forager or welder, I believe that seasoned cooks follow their gut more than a recipe and try to create a moment to share. And although there is much beauty and art given to us naturally in the word, I think that cooking is, especially now, a humanistic medium for expressing the culinary arts and ourselves. Luckily, it’s becoming more prominent.
A lot of good art that is created isn’t shared, and that’s a shame.
I want to call upon the natural necessity of eating in you, and ask that you share that necessity with friends. Skip the Sunday brunch, which is over-priced eggs and toast and mainly foods the restaurant purchased earlier that week that they need to get rid of, and host a brunch with your friends. Skip the Thursday night take-out, and cook some simple Pad Thai with your friends. Organize a Monday Night, alternate homes or apartments, and have a potluck with your friends.
Sharing the vulnerability of cooking, which entails feeding your friends art that you tried to make, is a damn good way to connect with them.
Let’s not even dive in on the facts of saving money and reducing waste, but rather on the craft of cooking and how it allows you and your friends to be on the same platform. I’m extremely particular when I have people, and friends, in my kitchen. Having one extra person in my kitchen is like having many toddlers running around an art exhibition. It can be nerve-wracking. But I think that’s the point. The majority of the time, everything works out fine.
My point is that bringing friends together to a feast doesn’t have to be an outlandish soirée, though it makes for an unexpected series of events. It can be more casual and slightly intimidating. Cooking with your friends will be a light that shines on who you are and who your friends are, which are almost the same thing. So if that bugs you, maybe you should figure out why.
If the idea of having a late-night dinner party, with food everyone cooked and wine everyone bought, doesn’t burn in you like blowing on ashy embers, then maybe you should just call your local Wing Stop and click “Continue Watching: Friends” on your iPad.
Writer’s note: This isn’t a punch to restaurants. I believe restaurants create some sense of what I’m proposing here. Going to an art show versus painting art are two different things.