I remember a couple of years ago I was pregnant and it was a Saturday morning; pregnancy had taken its' toll on me so I laid down on our couch. I turned on the TV and zoned into a new and amazing PBS show called America's Test Kitchen. It was so wonderful they go through mostly common dishes and tell the viewer what it should be. They go and study the taste, look and texture and then find the best ways to prepare the dish. One show I watched they were cooking a turkey and trying to do it without the use of brining, another they were teaching how to grill pizza, they even study desserts like strawberry shortcake. On top of cooking they even do a taste kitchen were they find the best ingredients and then have an equipment corner finding the best kitchen equipment. I instantly fell in love with America's Test Kitchen and knew it would come through as an alliance in the kitchen. The other day I told my husband that if he went out and bought me all their cookbooks, and maybe some DVDs, he would not have to send me to culinary school.
A while ago I checked out one of their cookbooks at the library and knew it was coming time to return it (I've had it for quite awhile) so I needed to get my last use out of it. I found a dish that sounded kind of fancy and looked fancy too, but the seemed quite simple, Chicken Piccata. Well nervousness set in while cooking it; Will my husband like it? Will he tell me to never make it again? Will he go and find something else to eat?
Well to my surprise after his first bite I heard the words:
"This is really good!!"
My jaw hit the floor. Now why would those words make my jaw hit the floor? If you know my husband you know he is a very encouraging man and is always giving and never brings anyone down. He is a truly genuine guy, but when it comes to cooking I'm always Begging him to critique my food, or rate it on a 1-10 scale, and I usually get the "It was good answer." How is "This is really good!!" different from "It was good."? Well it is VERY different. First of all it was a NATURAL reaction to the flavors melting in his mouth, I didn't have to ask for him to tell me!!! Secondly he used an adverb along with the adjective, emphasising the goodness of the food. Just the thought of the moment still brings me endless joy. And thirdly he even insisted on bringing some over to my parents.
I give so much thanks to ATK for the recipe and how they have taught me so much about cooking. I thank them for providing the means to what I have been praying for for such a long time, a dinner where my husband pauses and closes his eyes to enjoy to flavors that are sitting on his tongue. And a honest critique that is given by freewill.
Thank you America's Test Kitchen you will forever be my friend in the kitchen.