Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Mama Dreams of Fried Fish

Delirious, I closed my eyes and dropped directly into REM stage sleep full of thick, tenacious dreams that would not let me go. 

The next evening, watching Jiro Dreams of Sushi, I felt a pang of longing for Japan. The film is set in familiar subway tunnels, shops, and restaurants in Tokyo. Jiro's relentless pursuit of perfection is expressed through a ten seat sushi shop. Three Michelin Stars validate that he's a master of his craft. He tells you he dreams of sushi, wakes up in the middle of the night thinking of sushi. He also mentions that he has been on his own since age nine and that he last saw his father when he was seven years old. Failure was not an option, only hard work schooled by the quest for perfection. He seeks out experts that know fish and rice like he knows sushi. He reviews every detail before his customers arrive, and he tastes and tastes and tastes. Jiro says in the film, “In order to make delicious food, you need to eat delicious food. The quality of ingredients is important, but one must develop a palate capable of discerning good and bad food. Without good taste, you can’t make good food.”

A local chef commented that university students know good food, but they can't cook anything. Eating is a first step, then there is the cooking and the cooking and the cooking. I think this is where I am-- relentlessly cooking and trying to get the food to taste as good as I have eaten though I lack the desire to devote night and day to it like Jiro.

One dream leads to another, sushi is more of the nightmare realm for me, I dream of crispy fried fish. When I dream of food, I dream of eating it, not cooking it.