This blog is a place for wives, girlfriends, significant others, and anyone else stuck to a chef to come together and chirp to each other about how to deal with the nonsense that goes along with being the wife of a chef. I was struggling to live with a ghost of a husband who I never saw until I met two other chefs' wives that saved me. It was then that I realized there must be more who need love and support too, right? Hilary, First Lady Desperate Chefs'Wives instagram @hilarya25
Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Guest Blogger: So You Wanna Date a Chef? Good Luck!
It was hard at first. To see the burns and the cuts from that darn mandolin. And the calluses on his right hand that will never go away. It’s great to be with someone who is so passionate about their work. But it’s also not great to be with someone who is so passionate about their work.
Time. Meet your new enemy!! Time is now my new fear. It used to be sharks but I am now more afraid of time than anything in this world. Because time feels to never be on your side. And you will know what I mean if you decide to date a chef. My best advice is that you just relax when you do see him. Don’t make big plans or god forbid reservations at a restaurant. I made that mistake in the beginning of our relationship. Thinking that this was like all the other 9-5 er dudes I have dated. They simply don’t have TIME.
In the morning when he has to go to work, I feel as if there’s a referee standing there with a stop watch time ticking away. “It’s 11:40 am,!!! “Babe, I gotta go to work” is the line you get used to hearing.
We went to eat at NoMi at the Hyatt downtown, and the server asked if I too work in the industry. “No I replied” and Brian told him that I travel for work a lot and am gone on my tour. (Very much like George Clooney’s character in the movie Up in The Air.) The waiter joked “Well it’s not like you get to see him anyhow.”
The sad thing? It’s actually 100% true.
I joke that I sometimes hate his work. I don’t but I sometimes hate that they get him 90% and I get him 10%. He argues that it’s more like 80 /20 but I disagree.
If you are going to date a chef, realize that you can never really be “normal”. You aren’t going to have those dates on a Saturday night of dinner and a movie. You aren’t ever going to spend New Year’s Eve together or maybe Christmas either. You are going to have to spend time alone some nights waiting for him to get out of work. Which is never soon enough. I fall asleep sometimes and he will call me and wake me up. And that’s fine. Get used to his crazy hours.
Sunday is going to be your new favorite day. Or Monday.
I suggest that you don’t just tolerate his work. Really understand his business. Learn to love it. Cause then it is something you both are passionate about. Right now I am reading Foie Gras Wars all about the ban here in Chicago and the origins of Foie Gras.
Sure, you’ll never know as much as he knows,--he went to culinary school to learn all those things!! To me MAC is always going to be makeup and computers not knives.
For all the women who DO NOT work in the service industry, it’s a lot harder for us than a women who works WITH their boyfriend. You go 12 hours without seeing him. Daily. So I do recommend that you get used to text messages, photos from your phone and of course maybe an email thrown here and there just telling him he’s awesome and you’re thinking about him.
Book I am also reading now that is a MUST READ: The Soul of A Chef by Michael Ruhlman. It’s a page turner for sure and you learn of my new idol, Brian Polcyn of Forest Grill, http://www.theforestgrill.com who has something many Chefs lack, balance between home and work, with a successful restaurant, wife and 5 kids.
Book NOT to read, Anthony Bourdaines’s Kitchen Confidential. I love Anthony Bourdaine but I won’t read it because I am scared to read what really goes on in those kitchens. Sure. The “industry” has a notorious reputation for all Chef’s being cheaters and sleazebag drunks who cheat on their wives and girlfriends. Yeah. Don’t want to read that.
But there are the few chefs who just want to be normal. Who want to be happy not just in their work but outside their work as well. They want it ALL!
They want an actual relationship. They want some kind of normalcy. Some do want to be married and some do want kids. (And that whole urban legend of Chef’s not being able to have kids due to the heat in the kitchen is totally untrue.)
I learned that me complaining about not being able to see him isn’t ever going to help anything. So I just accept it. It’s going to take time to really accept his schedule. I am still working on it. He feels guilty that he’s at work all the time, but I always tell him it’s OK!!!
These guys, these Chefs,---they have tons of stress mentally and physically. So just do your best to be there for him. When he’s had a rough day at work be the one who gives him a back rub or takes him out for a beer and a chat. Or maybe just put some lotion on those darn rough hands of his!
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
I'm Fine, But Not Fine
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
Be My Guest!
Saturday, November 21, 2009
Always A Reason Why
It even feels hard to write that. But it's true. Erik worked for Jean-Georges since he started as a cook, still in culinary school. Jean-Georges was the front runner above all over fine dining chefs and restauratuers in my mind. I idolized him. And why not? I watched as my husband quickly fell in love with a career and lifestyle through the school of Jean-Georges. As Erik was training and learning I was reading the same blogs that all the industry people and foodies do-belonging to neither group. I was going along for the ride and loving every minute of it. I labeled myself first not as a friend, wife, or woman, but as a chef's wife.I even considered making the label permanent with a chefwife tattoo. I don't even like tattoos. When the Bragard uniform catalogue came in the mail I would quickly turn to the page of Jean-George and sigh in gratitude that he was taking care of us-mind it in a far distant way.
Things are different now. Not only does Erik work for a new company, in a new position but I've become less connected to what he's doing. I still turn through the Bragard catalogue to see Laurent Tourondel there, but it's not the same. I just don't ask about employee drama anymore, I've stopped reading the blogs altogether, and I see myself now as a unique person first, chefwife, friend and sister later. I do also have to say that when Erik joined BLT it was 24 hours before I knew I was pregnant so I'm sure that has something to do with it too.
I am still completely 100% supportive of my husband-just not wrapped up and overwhelmed in his work. Before he travels I get all of the hotel information for him such as: do they have a gym...laundry service...shuttle to the airport...shuttle to the restaurant...? Really though, that's also for me to have a little peace of mind. I eat at the BLT restaurants and ask lots of questions about this new restaurant group. I still stand tall when people ask, "What does your husband do?".
What does all of this mean for the Desperate Chefs' Wives? I am still completely committed to the connections I've made with other wives and girlfriends. I would love for the blog to last forever, but I am struggling to write since it's not on the forefront of my mind anymore. And now that I've been direct with you-what will you think of me?
Food is Love,
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
My advice? Well, I'm not an expert but I do have a perspective that I think might help some. I think there are some questions that need to be asked. For instance, is there a purpose to all of the work? Line cooks and even sous chefs will work very hard, but if the goal is to become an executive chef and work up through the ranks of a restaurant, then keep at it. There will come a time when the long nights get slightly shorter and the payoff will come. But if the goal is to cook and go home, then there is no reason to work in an environment that isn't conducive to a healthy emotional life. Also, who is training your chef? If these men are working under a 4 star executive chef with a lot of knowledge available, then keep at it. But working under a chef that isn't willing to train and guide isn't worth any sort of heartache or pain.
Talk to your chefs. Tell them how worried and scared you are that they are too overworked to enjoy life. I know my concerns often come out as nagging, so I have to work very hard to make sure that I express myself in a loving way-not an angry way. And let me tell you-I'm still working on it.
Food is Love,
Thursday, November 5, 2009
Wanted: Some Serious Advice
Hello Hilary and all,
I'm so desperate for help, and I know this is totally off topic from sushi. But like I said, I'm desperate for help.
I believe my partner is suffering from depression and/or exhaustion from his job. He is the head chef in a new restaurant that is less than a year old. He is working close to 20 hours a day, 5 days a week.
He said he has seen a doctor, but he is still reluctant to tell me what happened. Until he is ready to tell me, I have no idea what to do.
Can anyone please, please give me some advice. What do I say? What do I do? Who do I talk to?
Food is Love,
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
Thursday, October 29, 2009
The dinner will begin at 4:30 PM on Saturday, October 31 and tickets are on sale for runners as well as the general public for $25. They can be purchased starting today at the Jacob Javits Convention Center. So if you're not into dressing up like Jon and Kate Gosselin or dancing to the Monster Mash this year, head on over to Tavern on the Green for some delicious pasta dishes.
Good luck to all the runners!
Food is Love,
Sunday, October 18, 2009
Great Gathering of Chefs, Battman!
Saturday, October 10, 2009
POM Wonderful, with Caffeine!
The second package POM sent was two new juice flavors. It was the regular pomegranate juice with nectarine and kiwi flavors added. I definitely liked drinking them, again in those adorable bulbous containers. But I think I like the original pomegranate better. However, if the pure pomegranate juice is a bit too strong for you, then the kiwi or nectarine is perfect. It doesn't taste watered down, just less strong.
No matter what they put out, I just love the POM line of drinks.
Food is Love,
Check out their website at Healthybuzz.com or pomwonderful.com
Friday, October 9, 2009
The Chef is Back
While Erik was away it seems he really got into the groove of his new job. I get the impression that he has more value there as an employee than before. And his new company has a PR firm, Bullfrog and Baum (one of the best) that sets Erik up with all sorts of promo events. I don't know how other chefs feel about promotions. And actually I don't really know Erik feels since he hasn't done that many. On Monday, he'll be cooking with other restaurants at and Autism Speaks event in the financial district. On the 18th he'll be signing Battman's new book: Small Things Savory, at The Great Gathering of Chefs. He'll sign next to the mozzarella he made way back when at Perry St. That may be slightly weird since he's not representing Perry St anymore, but I think it will be fun and Battman even said I can come! I love these events. I hope to bump into my promo event buddy Wylie Dufresne; he is probably the nicest chef I've ever met. Oh, and Erik is taking a class from the Gohan Society: Mastering Fish the Japanese Way.
There is so much going on but it all feels right. I'm so glad to have my chef back.
Food is Love,
Friday, October 2, 2009
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
This Wife Can Cook
I'm no "king of the kitchen" but I can certainly hold my own enough to keep me fed and satisfied. Erik comes home Sunday and I'm curious to see how the chef reacts to another cook in his kitchen. I won't be taking over or anything but there will be a few new rules around here.
1. Vegetables-fresh or canned- will be served with every meal.
2. More chicken, less ground beef.
This shouldn't be too much of a change so I think the chef will be able to deal.
Food is Love,
Saturday, September 26, 2009
Friday, September 18, 2009
Kanye, No Way
Occasionally various writers from TMZ send me stories related to food, chefs and celebrities. I've never posted anything because the stories are usually petty and just don't fit the mood and style of this blog. But I got something interesting in my inbox today and I thought I'd pass it along.
Kanye -- The Unkindest Cut of All
Wolfgang Puck has a P.R. problem -- one Kanye West ... and he's screwing with the menu.
CUT -- Wolfgang's Bev Hills restaurant -- has menus with pics of various celebs on the cover, including Kanye West, President Barack Obama, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Angelina Jolie.
Last night, several tables got dealt Kanye menus and complained to the server, who obliged by trading up.
We spoke with the manager of CUT, who confessed people were handing back Kanye menus even before his hateful VMA stunt last Sunday. We think you know his record.
But truth be told, the manager says people have also turned back menus featuring Obama and Arnold.
The restaurant will boldly continue to deal in Kanye.
I had a couple reactions to this news.
#1- Way to go to all those diners who thought they deserved a less offensive menu. I would certainly chose an Obama or Arnold trading card-I mean menu over Kanye. Even before he was a major jerk hole to my kid sisters' idol Taylor Swift, I don't think he belongs on a menu with the likes of Obama.
#2- Why does Wolfgang even have celebs on his menu?? What do celebrities have to do with food? Or politicians for that matter? I was raised in Los Angeles, California for 17 years before I moved to New York/New Jersey 5 year ago. Looking west to LA I'd say Wolfgang is sooo Hollywood. I don't see pop culture celebs and politicians lasting a NY minute on any menus around here.
Going along with the needless yet occasionally addicting non-information TMZ lends, I have a drop of juice on the Austrian chef. He was in the process of being approved by the Board of Trustees at the Bel-Air Country Club but he was DENIED because of his then wife and business partner, Barbara Lazaroff. The club didn't like her and didn't want her around. I don't know if he ever re-applied, we had left LA by then and I haven't been to the club since. And really, who cares anyway?
Food is Love,
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
Oh, My Achin' Head!
Food is Love,
Oh, and Erik has only been gone for 8 days and it feels like 8 weeks. Is it October 4th yet?
Thursday, September 10, 2009
Pressure Cooker on TV!
Jennifer Grausman, daughter of C-CAP founder Richard Grausman, is very excited to share her documentary Pressure Cooker. This touching film follows three seniors at Philadelphia’s Frankford High School, who find an unlikely champion in Culinary Arts teacher Wilma Stephenson. A legend in the school system, Mrs. Stephenson’s hilariously blunt boot-camp method is validated by years of scholarship success that’s taken countless students from the city’s working-class neighborhoods to the top culinary schools in the country. And under her fierce direction, the usual distractions of high school are swept aside as Erica, Dudley and Fatoumata prepare to achieve beyond what anyone else expects from them.
Again, the trailer for Pressure Cooker:
Facebook fanatic? Become a fan of Pressure Cooker.
It will be my first time seeing the movie on Saturday as well and I'd love to hear what you have to say about it so come back and comment.
Food is Love,
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
26 Days and Counting
Of course on top of all that, and more importantly too, I'm 11 weeks pregnant. I wish Erik were around, but I can survive these next four weeks without him. He just better plant himself in NYC in March so he doesn't miss the birth!
But no matter how busy I try to make myself, I'm still going to go crazy for Erik, especially on Sundays. I'm used to Saturdays and weekdays alone, but Sundays-they'll be rough. Traveling is a new aspect to Erik's job that we never had before. I'm wondering if there are others out there who have techniques or ideas to deal. I do have iChat on my mac to Erik and I can at least "see" each other that way.
Food is Love,
Monday, August 31, 2009
"Chefs tend to be notoriously bad husbands and boyfriends, and the reason is obvious: They’re at work all night, they love to pop corks and hit the dummyI don't like to think of chefs as such "bad boys"-probably because that's not my thing. But I do know some of some chef drinkers, toquers and cheaters. However, that exists in any industry. For the most part though, the chefs I know aren't cheaters. But we can't deny that even well-known chefs have bad track records.
pipe, and there are always foxy waitresses, servers, and even diners eager for
the “fourth course.” But don’t despair if you’re stuck with one of these
scoundrels. There’s a blog for you."
-UK celebrity chef John Burton Race walked out on his wife and 6 children for another women he now lives with, and has a child with.
-Gordon Ramsay has been accused of cheating on his wife, Tana-but as far as I know they are still together.
-And of course, the Top Chef Season 5 cheaters both Hosea and Leah has significant others back home and they cheated on national television-with each other.
So it is out there ladies but I wouldn't suggest avoiding chefs all together or dumping yours now out of fear. Bring your concerns here if you suspect an unfaithful chef. We can talk about it and find a solution. And given the circumstances of being married to a chef, who's to say wives are never tempted stray? But if you know for a fact that your man has cheated, my advice will always be the same: leave, now.
The New York Magazine article I mentioned earlier ended with this:
"Desperation aside, the author's own domestic situation seems rather stable,HA. Well, keep holding your breath then because this chef and wife are better than ever. A four year wedding anniversary in October, a new job, and a baby due in March. Life is good.
which kind of detracts from the site's entertainment value, you know? What it
really needs is more sob stories! We want a blog that reads like a chef-y
telenova! But given what goes on in those naughty chef circles, it's only a
matter of time. We'll wait, breath baited."
Food is Love,
Sunday, August 30, 2009
Chef + Wife + BABY
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
Friday, August 21, 2009
Me: Put the mask back on.
Erik: Why? What is going on?
Me: Just put the mask back on so we can go back to sleep.
Erik: Sleep? We're sleeping?
Erik: So we're not making amuse bouche?
Hilary: [rolled over and gave up]
Food is Love
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
I knew for a few days now that the condo building we live in would have the water shut off today from 10 AM until 3 PM. No big deal, Erik and I leave before then and come back much later. So you can imagine how shocked I was when I came home today around 6 to the sound of the water running in the kitchen. My fears seemed so real that I was about the burst into tears. It wasn't long ago that I left the bathroom fauceet running while I took a shower. )Sorry to the ones living in #1907.) I didn't even get the front door shut or the lights turned on as I did a tip-toe-run to the kitchen through 6 inches of imaginary water. Once I got the faucet off and the lights on I came to realize that the floor was bone dry. Thank goodness the sink was clear, except for a pan that was soaking over the edge of the sink. If the stopper had been in place, my house would have been ruined-not to mention all 19 floor beneath me. Well, maybe only the 19th and 18th floors would have been soaked.
...so someone left the faucet on...
But it doesn't end there, ladies. I turn around to make sure there was no water on the floor. After all that, the image of a soaked floor in my mind was hard to erase. What did I see before me? Light coming from the fridge. The door was open all day long! Not a crack either that happens when the freezer is too full and a slam of the fridge door will leave that little crack. I'm talking at least 4 inches wide open. So wide in fact that the light was on. Go to your fridge now and test it-see how far you have to open the door to get the light on. It's far! I guess a giant Sam's Club ketchup was bent to the side propping the door open. Most of the food actually survived, especially the things in the drawers and on the bottom shelf. But the giant 2 pound block of extra sharp Cheddar that I just bought yesterday-unopened, was all melted inside the package. It was directly under the light bulb and completely sweaty. Gross. I haven't really looked at the other food since I thought it best just to shut the door and keep it shut. This was after I had to make dinner by opening the door and getting everything out at once like a stealth fridge thief.
... so someone left the fridge open...
All in all, everything is fine now, but for those first moments when I got home I was freaking out. And although I do my best to avoid blame...I have to say on behalf of myself that I wasn't the last one to leave the house today. I'm just saying...
Food is Love,
Saturday, August 15, 2009
Goodbye Perry St
Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Two of a Kind
Friday, August 7, 2009
"I know this is going to be ridiculous.... The custards haven't set. We have to make a new batch."
"How do you make custard?"
"You need eggs."
"Read the recipe."
"I don't have a recipe, can't you just teach me?"
"I'm not here to teach you; make more custard." (He's tough!)
"Can't we just put the custard in the freezer to set?"
"That might work. This is ridiculous. I'm in the bed!"
Erik was recently fitted for a CPAP ("see-pap") machine to help him sleep at night since he has sleep apnea. However, he hasn't quite gotten used to the breathing machine and until he does these mumbles are going to continue.
Food is Love,
Wednesday, August 5, 2009
Things get a little sticky around summer time. Although I'm a teacher I work during the summer part time at the school doing administrative work. So with all the extra time I pick up more of Erik's work. I don't mind ironing or cleaning the bathroom; it keeps me busy. But somehow this whole summer Erik hasn't done a thing! How did that happen? How did I let that happen? So now I'm blowing up and pissed off not because I have to do more work, but because Erik doesn't seem to care about anything other than cooking or eating....would you guess he's an only child?
Food is Love, (and frustration)
Friday, July 31, 2009
Best New Restaurants
Bon Appétit’s latest edition will boast the: " Top 10 Best New Restaurants in America” and not one but TWO of the restaurants are those that I love.
For a soon to be sophomore I think she's a pretty good savory cook. She made me dinner not too long ago-garlic sauteed shrimp and rice and she explained the steps along the way too as if my parents kitchen was a studio. I have a feeling she's been strongly influenced (like many people) by the Food Network. Shows like Ace of Cakes make it seem like being a pastry chef is all about cleverly icing cakes in a funky office with all your pals. There really isn't a show on the Food Network or any network that shows how demanding cooking and baking really are. There are plenty of books (Kitchen Confidential, Spiced , The Sharper Your Knife the Less You Cry, etc. ) but the books are slightly less available and certainly less appealing to teenage girls.
I really don't know what to tell my sister. She's a great student, gymnast (I coached her her first few years), and cheerleader. And she's young enough that her mind might change three dozen times before settling down with a career. She might also end up with her own fake cake show selling the improbable dream to a new generation of wide-eyed teenagers. The career really makes no difference to me so long as she's treated right and happy about it.
Food is Love,
Wednesday, July 29, 2009
"How many wings are here?"
"No, there are way more than that, there are at least 5 birds cooking. Can't you smell it?"
Now, he's dreaming about chicken. Or come to think of it, that could be turkey or even squab. We'll never know.
Food is Love,
Tuesday, July 28, 2009
A Hard Post to Write
I, on the other hand, found your blog by hitting "next blog" and stumpled on it...I was fasinated by the content and had no idea there was a need for this forum. I do feel for all of you. I'm sorry that your boyfriends/husbands work long hours and leave you home alone or just feeling alone. I'm sure the 14, 15, 16 hour days are long and when he comes home he's tired and maybe deep down because of this you're not being completely fulfilled in the relationship and that might make you doubt why you're in it. I get it. My husband doesn't have to be a chef for me to get it. I'm happy that you have eachother to listen and simply know that someone else is out there feeling the same lonely pain. It's not unlike the support groups I have for my life. We all marry or date these men who have their lives and passions and no one puts a gun to our head to make us stay...we stay because we love them and it becomes our lives too. We should embrace our lives. Move on with your own lives as much as you can. A good relationship is two lives not staring only at eachother, but standing next to eachother moving in the same direction.
With all due respect to fellow women, some of you sound a bit too wrapped up in the sadness of it and the drama instead of taking the hard times as they come and realizing how good you have it! You all are so lucky! You have these men who you love and who love you and they may work a long day but oh my good they come home and they are safe and happy doing what they love!! You are so lucky and I feel like you don't see it or really appreciate it as much as you should. I know it's hard to look for the good and the bright side, but you have to. You have to. Life gets harder...sometimes for you and sometimes for others. You're growing to grow older and have kids and the focus will shift from longing him to have an 8-10 hour day to real problems and I fear you're not being happy and grateful now, when you should be.
My support group I mentioned is for wives of military men...mostly men who have been hurt or killed in Iraq. My husband has been gone this tour for 2 years...I've seen him 3 times during that time. I go for days and days, a few times weeks with no email or word from him. I go to bed at night not knowing if he's safe...or when me and the kids will see him..or if we will see him. I helped choose this life and I know and pray someday it will change.
I'm in no way trying to "trump" your pain. I know its all how we're built and what we can handle. But try, for me, to keep things in perspective and be happy and grateful for what you do have.
The reality of it all is that there is a need for this blog, otherwise no one would read it. We have all found comfort in the stories shared by others. I've worked very hard to make this a playful blog as well. "Chef mumbles", stories of reality chef TV, silly anecdotes, and links to other food related articles make this blog fun, too. As you can see I'm feeling very defensive because I feel attacked by Rachel. I can't imagine what her life is like married to a man who is on tour in Iraq let alone in the military. But unlike Rachel, I never once made my case seem worse than anyone else's. In reference to her last paragraph, in my experience, when someone says "I'm not trying to..." it means they are very much trying to (in this case trump our pain). I married a chef, she married a military man. No one is better, nothing is harder, no one is greater. We are all given struggles in our lives to overcome. Some we can handle, some we can't. It is what it is. My life is wonderful and if readers don't see how happy I am, then I guess I'm not getting that part across.
Rachel, thank you for reading my blog and commenting. I hope your husband and his fellow troops come home quickly and safely to their families and I'm sorry if you feel like I'm not grateful for my life. It must be difficult reading a blog like this in your situation so it seems like you would be much happier not reading it, though I welcome you here anytime.
Food is Love,
Monday, July 27, 2009
Matter of Knife and Death
He came out with a 240 millimeter Suisin Damascus Ginsan-Ko Gyutou with and ebony and silver handle, engraved with his name, a sharpening stone, and these awesome Japanese scrubbers called Sandclean, for cleaning pots and pans. I tried them on the caked on grease on my stainless steal pots and they are spotless! And I didn't even use any cleaning products. It kind of looks like a crazy sea creature and it feels like sandpaper, but it works great!
Sunday, July 26, 2009
My best friend (of the non-human form) is the Internet. I could spend all on day on a computer if I had the time. Amazon, Facebook, email, blogs, news, and all the other websites that are silly yet powerfully addicting. (cakewrecks, failblog,craigslist) Writing on this blog is therapeutic for me; I can't get enough of the Desperate Chefs' Wives. The more women who read, email, and comment give me good ideas and support. I don't know what I would have done without you ladies the last couple of weeks when Erik was working so much. But how were you all led to this unique site? I have a feeling it's mostly Google or some other search engine. I remember also searching "dating a chef" and coming up empty handed. But now the first website listed is this one and I'm so glad that others have found the blog when searching for help.
Sunday, July 19, 2009
BBQ Road Trippin'
Saturday, July 18, 2009
Creating a New Normal
In the movie Food Inc., there was a women who lost her young son due to E.Coli in a hamburger. She said something that stuck with me and I think we can all apply it to our lives-especially being married to chefs. She said that after losing her son, she didn't want pity. She had a hard time dealing with but she "created a new normal". Our lives aren't really normal, especially those of us who have chefs who work late nights and holidays. We don't have the lives that society says are normal so we have to accept that and normalize what we do have. A normal weekend becomes Sunday Monday, a normal Valentine's day is days before or after the actual holiday, and married mother's feel like single moms.
A commenter, Allie, wondered how I could possibly keep my mind of Erik working so much just because I'd be away in Cape Cod. Well, that's easy-that's my normal. Being without Erik is pretty normal for me, but being without him so long is really tough. Keeping busy with my own things seems to really help during times like these. This is especially true since I only see my family twice a year. (they live in Columbus, Ohio)
So, make a new normal for your life. Our lives are like no one else's and it's better to embrace what we have then focus on what we don't. And I hope I don't sound to much like an overpaid life coach, because I just want to share what helps me.
Food is Love,
Friday, July 17, 2009
Oh, and my parents and sisters are going to Cape Cod tomorrow and they're picking me up on the way. We've never been, but I can't wait to spend time with my family. I never get to see them this much. The next week gazing across the sound at Martha's Vineyard will keep my mind off the fact that Erik is working a million hours a week.
Don't forget to write a comment on my free Ben & Jerry's post. There is still time to get a free Flipped Out ice cream! I picked up mine today at Target Greatland but since they come in a two pack I'll wait until Erik gets home to have an ice cream social.
Food is Love,
Tuesday, July 14, 2009
Flipped Out Giveaway!
Sunday, July 12, 2009
I Take It All Back
Everything I said about being without Erik this long and things going "swimmingly" must have been written on some sort of park and sunshine euphoric high. I take it all back, every keystroke I typed. I hate this. And this could be some sort of emotional melt down at a weak moment for me, but I just feel like this industry is such a monster. It's the meanest bad guy bogeyman that ever came out from under my bed. I'm so aggravated with the complete uuber saturation of food media-especially on the Internet. I've got half a mind to delete all my links to food websites, but I suppose they go along with the theme of this blog.
Saturday, July 11, 2009
Bikes, Beaches, and Better Days
But I still can't help feeling bad for Erik. It's hard to see him this tired. He's not even himself really. He gets in at 1:30 just to leave at 9. I
I think we both need a new normal, this isn't working.
Food is Love,
Friday, July 10, 2009
AND! The PATH train which takes my husband and I under the Hudson River to NY is getting all new train cars. Finally! It's the little things that really make the day to day special.
Food is Love,
Tuesday, July 7, 2009
Tip of the Iceburg
I knew a couple that used to tip for service and also send cash back to the kitchen to show their favorite cooks and chefs some love. I've bought beers for the guys at Perry St and I think they liked that enough.
Sure, I get it that waitstaff deserves tips, after all they only get paid a couple dollars an hour and they slave over unruly diners. But what about the chefs and cooks? Some servers make more money than the cooks who put in twice as many hours. Shouln't they get tipped? Are they not also performing a service like a barber, cab driver, or hotel maid? They are technically in the food service industry. I don't know the answer to this. It would be great if my husband got tips on top of his salary but knowing this brutal industry his pay would be decreased to $10,000 before that would ever happen. Heaven forbid chefs would actually make what they are worth. Or teachers for that matter, but that's another blog.
Food is Love,
PS It's day one of Erik's doubles. AHH! I'll be busy til Thursday with work, then Friday my brother and his girlfriend are coming into town. Yay! Plus, Erik and I just got our bikes from Ohio so I'll be riding bikes next week. I'll be busy enough!
Thursday, July 2, 2009
Friday, June 26, 2009
I'm Not Perfect!
My husband's sous chef is taking two weeks off in July to get married. So Erik has to work 17 doubles in a row-no weekends. I'm so livid with this whole situation. I'm angry that there is no one else who can help my husband at the restaurant and I'm annoyed that I have to deal with an overworked-underpaid chef for 17 days in a row.
Last night, Erik was asking me why can't I just be supportive, like I usually am? I don't know. Perhaps it's because I'm not perfect. I can only smile so much, blog so many times, spend time alone so many nights before it all catches up to me. Erik might as well be on another planet for 17 days because there is no way I'll ever see him. He'll leave every day at 9 and get home at 1 AM or later. On top of that, I only work part-time at the school in the summer so I don't have many work things to occupy my time. I just don't think I'm going to be able to handle it this time.
Food is Love,
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
No. You're sleeping... in a bed... on the 20th floor... in Jersey City.
I need nice, soft peaks for this whipped cream.
Food is Love,
Monday, June 22, 2009
I saw Food Inc tonight and it was one of the most powerful movies I've ever seen. I can honestly say it has already changed my life. I went grocery shopping immediately after leaving the theatre and the purchases I made reflected my new outlook on food. I only bought in season produce, no hormone and no antibiotic milk, and I checked to see where products came from. (the closer the better)
I highly recommend this film to anyone who does the following activities:
Seriously, folks I can't push this film hard enough on you. There are so many thing hidden from the general public about food and food safety and its time we all see the truth. It's too bad that Obama is out fixing the world from the economic crisis, otherwise he could focus his energies on trust busting the major food companies that dictate the food industry.
I could preach all day, but the movie will do a much better job. Get out there and see it, you won't regret it. The tomatometer on Rotten Tomatoes shows Food Inc. at 96%. And no, this movie doesn't show more than a couple graphic slaughterhouse scenes. It won't change you into a vegetarian either, but this movie will make you a more informed shopper. I didn't know how ignorant I was to the origins of my chicken breasts or batteries.
Check out the blog: Hungry for Change
Click here to see if the movie is playing near you.
Food is Love,
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Days Off or Off Days
Food is Love,
Saturday, June 13, 2009
Yes we did.
No, we didn't.
YES! We both made cheese sandwiches.
The sad part about this conversation is that the chef was awake. I can't wait to find the results of this sleep test Sunday. On the information packet we had to fill out there was a section to mark things that happen in the night. "Talking during sleeping" was checked off faster than anything else.
Food is Love,
Friday, June 12, 2009
Don't Steal My Chef
Erik needs to take a sleep test this week and the woman at the sleep center who is setting everything up for us is so sweet. At first she only said, "I'm sure your husband won't even eat the free breakfast we offer, since he's a chef". Free breakfast? He'll take two! Then last night when Erik was talking to her she joked that the only reason I was staying overnight with Erik was so that I could make sure no one would steal my chefhusband. I'm actually going for moral support, but she's one of the many who see an alluring lifestyle that chefs lead. And to be completely honest with you, I fall victim to it as well.
Although I know first hand of the non-classy and non-exciting parts of being married to a chef I seem to think that the big wig chefs like Jean-Georges Vongerichten, Thomas Keller, and the like have incredibly desirable lives all equipped with long vacations on French beaches and smart parties on yachts. I suppose the grass always seems greener even when you know first hand that it's not.
Food is Love,
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
Feed the Kids
Saturday, June 6, 2009
Wok and Roll
I'm not much a pin wearer, but for the sake of humor, I'd boast this bad boy on my lapel.
Wednesday, June 3, 2009
When I was in college I read Fast Food Nation for my political science class and I became a vegetarian immediately after finishing the last pages of the book. I wrote at least three term papers on the deceitful nature of the fast food industry and its negative impacts on children. My altered diet lasted only one year, and the Peta stickers faded off my car, but the loathing of all things fast food seemed to burn into my brain. I do love fast food though- it tastes great-but I hate the way the big companies brainwash people into believing certain things are healthy, or even edible!
Tony Bordain wrote Kitchen Confidential giving a clear view into the underbelly of NYC's culinary industry and Eric Schlosser's Fast Food Nation did the same for the fast food industry. After reading that book you'll think twice about fast food. Not only will it shock and disgust you but the history of fast food is charming one that eventually turned rancid. Fast Food Nation was made into a movie that Hollywood ruined with cheesy characters and a love interest. It should have been a documentary. Michael Moore would have been great at that.
Writer Eric Schlosser must have been disappointed in the movie too since he's been working collaboratively on another film: Food, Inc. "Filmmaker Robert Kenner lifts the veil on our nation's food industry, exposing the highly mechanized underbelly that's been hidden from the American consumer with the consent of our government's regulatory agencies, USDA and FDA. Our nation's food supply is now controlled by a handful of corporations that often put profit ahead of consumer health, the livelihood of the American farmer, the safety of workers and our own environment. We have bigger-breasted chickens, the perfect pork chop, insecticide-resistant soybean seeds, even tomatoes that won't go bad, but we also have new strains of e coli--the harmful bacteria that cause illness for an estimated 73,000 Americans annually. We are riddled with widespread obesity, particularly among children, and an epidemic level of diabetes among adults Featuring interviews with such experts as Eric Schlosser (Fast Food Nation), Michael Pollan (The Omnivore's Dilemma) along with forward thinking social entrepreneurs like Stonyfield Farms' Gary Hirschberg and
Polyface Farms' Joe Salatin, "Food, Inc." reveals surprising--and often shocking truths--about what we eat, how it's produced, who we have become as a nation and where we are going from here. "
Care to read the book before you see the movie?
Food, Inc. opens in LA and NYC on June 12. For tickets visit MovieTickets.com.
Just from watching the trailer I'm convinced. I'll be making some serious changes at the grocery store. And I hope this movie changes the way other people shop for food. We do have the power to change the large companies; each item we buy at the store is a vote. What will you vote for?
Food is Love,
Tuesday, June 2, 2009
A reader recently asked me if I could do everything over again would I run? As in run from the my chef like she's tempted to do now knowing what we all know. There is no way I would ever change anything. It would take all the powers in the world to tear me away from my perfectly imperfect life. I can't stand the time my chef is away at work, but it's the life I lead and I'm not going anywhere. A life with a 9-5 husband would certainly lend to more quality time, but there would be other problems. There always is. I believe we are challenged each day in life only enough that we can handle it while still learning something at the same time. I'm challenged everyday, any more than this and I'd be done for, any less and my life would be boring.
Food is Love,
Monday, June 1, 2009
I wish I could have been writing more this weekend, but I'm in Ohio right now celebrating my sister's high school graduation. Only one more sibling to graduate! We celebrated down on our Uncle's farm where our cousin, James also graduated. I'm flying home tonight and I can't wait because even a few days without my chef seems like forever. I'll be blogging soon again, I promise!