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Words of Wisdom from Alton Brown

Thursday, November 03, 2011

My father was a chemist, and some of my best memories of growing up were after dinner, when we'd push the dishes aside and he'd start explaining something and writing equations all over the napkins. An hour would disappear into his stories. Alton Brown picked up with food chemistry, but with puppets and models rather than equations. I read Shirley Corriher's book "Cookwise" (which, I think, was his model) when it first came out, and I was thrilled to see someone else who was as entranced by her approach to cooking as I was.

From Alton's "Final Thoughts" at the end of his last book:

"I do know that we have some pretty big problems in this country, and I think that at least a few of them could be solved if we concentrated as much on cooking as we do on eating. Food is fabulous stuff, to be sure, but cooking can also be its own reward. Cooking is an action, and it's time for more action and a little less consumption."

Truer words were never said. In our land of plenty, with microwaves and frozen and packaged food, consumption has been separated from creation. No wonder we are in such thrall to the food marketers! When we prepare our own meals, we have TWO joys: creation as well as consumption.

Alton ends with "And it wouldn't hurt us to be a little thankful every now and then."

I am far more aware of the bounty of today when I assemble my own meal than if I just stopped by the drive-in window. And awareness leads to gratitude.

All 3 of Alton Brown's books are fun and informative, and I only wish my father could have lived to enjoy them. And the food that resulted.

Member Comments About This Blog Post:
MEADSBAY 12/3/2011 4:24PM

    I, too, love Alton Brown and his scientific mind in the kitchen (also love Bill Nye, the Science Guy).
And, I LOVE to cook- never buy take-out and rarely eat out any more- I can cook better than them, often.

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FISHINGLADY66 11/24/2011 8:07AM


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DEBBYFROMMT 11/9/2011 10:55AM

    I LOVE Alton Brown! I will look for his books. It's amazing when one cooks from scratch how much healthier it is! I've found I use a lot of fresh vegetables (in season) what I can find, and it tastes so much better. Thanks for the blog! emoticon emoticon

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BRATS4 11/3/2011 9:36PM


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CYNDERROSE 11/3/2011 6:01PM

    Thats awesome! I love Alton Brown.

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DEMETERSCO 11/3/2011 3:08PM

    Thanks for sharing this author. I will look into his books.

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4A-HEALTHY-BMI 11/3/2011 2:59PM

    "creation as well as consumption"

I like it!

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LADY_MARIANA 11/3/2011 2:27PM

    Thanks for a great blog entry and a wonderful quotation from Brown. I love the days when I am not too busy at work and I can relax and think mindfully and wisely about food and cooking well.

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