‘The Main Ingredient’ and Culinary Prejudices

Gavin WrenFood Education, Food Opinion Pieces, The World of Food

butternut squash black background
Forgive me father. It’s confessional corner again, time to lay bare yet another one of my peculiar little nuances regarding food. This time it’s a distinctly partial perspective of mine, a way of approaching food which has taken years to become apparent, and taken quite some time to ultimately dispel. It affected how I planned meals, how I chose recipes and how I did my shopping. This particularly peculiar perception worked to furnish me with a set of culinary blinkers, which I’m glad to say have been cast asunder, left to lie in tatters at the kerbside of my culinary journey through life. The Main Ingredient. I have spent vast tracts of my life labouring under a misconception. I worked under the peculiar idea that when I make a recipe, there lies an item within it, just one single ingredient, which is so overwhelmingly powerful, vital and precious that it…

Why Icarus Was Right And Your Teachers Were Wrong

Gavin WrenFood Opinion Pieces, The World of Food

Herbert_Draper_-_The_Lament_for_Icarus_-_Google_Art_Project-feature
Most people learn about the fate of Icarus at a young age. It serves as a powerfully graphic warning of the perils of excessive self-confidence, how one should avoid extreme risks because of their potentially grave conscequences. The crux of the story has even passed into our lexicon as a euphemism for over-reaching ambition or greed. I’ve often heard it said, in a slightly smug way, that someone has “flown too close to the sun” if their ventures have sadly failed, as if they should have heeded the story of Icarus and known better. The story of Icarus is the tale of Daedalus and his son, Icarus, who are exiled on Crete and unable to escape by means of sea or land. In a final bid to escape, Daedalus crafts imitation bird’s wings out of feathers fastened with thread and bees wax which he affixes to their arms, allowing them…

Video: Kitchen gadgets and their false claims

Gavin WrenFood Opinion Pieces, Food Techniques, The World of Food, YouTube Food Videos

home cooked truths 5 - kitchen gadgets
I hate clutter Being a big food eater (I don’t mean that I’m big, but that my interest in the aforementioned subject looms overwhelmingly across large swathes of my conscious and unconscious existence), the accumulation of kitchen gadgets presents a difficult situation. Even if you have merely a whimsical attraction to cooking then you’ll be well aware that the food industry is a flabbergastingly vast arena in which your hard earned pennies can be tempted away from you by exciting, new, time & energy saving gadgets and accoutrements. There are tools and widgets for doing everything and each individual job is catered for by a niche product that will REVOLUTIONISE the way you complete that task if you were to believe the manufacturers. This level of product innovation is fabulous on many levels yet it presents us consumers with some very hard choices. You’re all guilty I’m guessing that almost…

How to write bad blog posts and lose visitors

Gavin WrenFood Blogging, Food Opinion Pieces, The World of Food

How to write bad blog posts and lose visitors
If there’s one thing that turns me off when I read a blog post, it’s starting with phrases like “YOU NEED THIS IN YOUR LIFE!” or “This recipe is AMAZING and will CHANGE your WORLD”. You don’t NEED any recipe in your life, you just need basic food and water and the absolute last thing you need in your life is someone telling you what choices you should make. You should work them out for yourself and if you aren’t already doing that, then you need to start, rather than listening to a click-hungry blogger who is trying to big-up their recipe in the hope of a few more pence of ad revenue. It’s patronising and condescending that some blog writers can’t give their readers some credit by engaging you with engrossing text worthy of reading, rather than red-top tabloid headlines. Of course bloggers will tell you their recipe is…