I’m creating this blog as a space to write about eating — hopefully, eating well.

Eating well is an art. Everyone dabbles in it.  The elements are simple and familiar:  gathering ingredients, applying heat and time, and savoring the result.  Like other arts, its a creative process where you use the elements to create something unique. And this gives you satisfaction!

But when I look through cookbooks and food blogs (which I love to do), I mostly see content couched in the language of science. I get bored reading strict instructions and taking precise measurements in the style of a laboratory notebook.  Sure, a recipe can be a valuable resource if, like a chemist, you need to replicate a particular result.  But it can also be a crutch, preventing you from cooking on your own two feet, so to speak.

I love going to the grocery store, seeing what’s cheap and in season, and looking for inspiration. When I’m in the kitchen, I love adding, tweaking, and improvising. Of course, just as a jazz musician must know the structure of a song before adding his own flourishes, I try to learn the mechanics of what I’m cooking. If I have my eye on cooking something in particular, I’ll look up various recipes to try to understand the basics.

But no recipe can tell me what mood I’m in, no blog can dictate whether I crave crisp leafy greens or earthy mushrooms or unctuous pork belly. I have to step into the kitchen and see how I feel. And that is the essence of eating well.

Finally, as the title implies, I do have a budget in mind.  If I could afford to eat at restaurants all the time, or shop at Whole Foods every day, then eating well would be an afterthought.  In America, it’s the middle class families and working poor who don’t have the money to eat well — it’s also the students and 20somethings who were never taught. (While I have no desire to get up on well-trodden soapboxes, food is a colossal topic and I expect to stray occasionally into some areas of social studies that relate to food.)

I hope you enjoy!


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