I love cooking.
Following a recipe and producing something resembling food helps my creative side. I get great ideas for characters and plots whilst cooking. I think it is something to do with sharp knives.
A recent exercise on the Creative Writing course asked to write notes whilst preparing a meal or baking. The aim was to produce a character and prose to include the five senses and emotions evoked during the process.
This is the most recent draft of the piece.
Cooking created a quandary for Dave. He enjoyed the process of collecting ingredients and following a recipe but the bouts of disorganisation and collective clutter, as the recipe came together, disturbed him.
Selecting a recipe raised Dave’s mood and he felt a tingle of excitement as he went through the cupboards getting together the ingredients. Butter, flour, cinnamon and honey looked ordered in their factory packaging sat next to the bananas, sultanas and eggs. The smell of sultanas provided particular appeal.
The start of the recipe involved mashing bananas. Dave wanted to get his hands into the bananas, in the mixing bowl, but his aversion to mess prevented this and he opted for a fork.
The Happy Monday’s, Hallelujah, played on the radio and soon he was mashing in time to the music.
Mixing the butter and sugar provided a short physical workout. He whisked the mixture until it became a soft cream and his hand ached. The white flour sifting through his hands and fingers, into the mix, provided some pleasure as nothing stuck to him. He battled to keep the egg shell out of bowl as he cracked the eggs, and after more whisking something resembling wet concrete sat in the bottom of the bowl.
The bananas were added and, after a final whisk, the mix was poured into the baking tin. The smell of the bananas, sultanas and honey made Dave’s mouth water.
A blast of heat hit his face as he opened the oven door and placed the cake tin on the shelf. He felt satisfied as the oven light illuminated the efforts of the last half hour.
Satisfaction was quickly replaced by mild terror.