#FoodieFriday: Sam likes it hot!
[Editor's note: I first met Sam 8 years ago when I bumped into her in a Greenbelt hallway after she hosted Nigel Barker's meet and greet that I covered. She was hosting a weekly show on ETC then. "May I have a pic with you? I'm a fan!" I remember chirping. Sam happily agreed to have a photo taken, of course.
A year after, we featured Sam in the magazine I was working on with ABS-CBN Publishing. We went all the way to the ETC studio in Antipolo for a few hours with her. I saw how organized she was, and how intelligent a person she really is. And when she showed me her complete set of Dong-A My Gel pens that she used to color-coordinate her notes, I knew I had found a soulmate!
Today, Sam and I have been friends for 7 years. She has seen me through a few challenges and changes in life, and we have both grown as — well — adventure-seekers. She joins us in Rappler as a #FoodieFriday columnist. Beginning February 1, she will be sharing original recipes, stories of attempts at coming up with delicious recipes, and of trying out recipes she comes across.
Feel free to send us questions for Sam and even recipe requests. Email firstname.lastname@example.org. Use the subject heading SAM LIKES IT HOT. We are growing, and I am happy to have Sam on board, for more #GoodVibes. - KLM]
MANILA, Philippines - “Food is the only beautiful thing that truly nourishes.”
That’s a line from the movie "Autumn in New York" said by the character Will Keane played by Richard Gere. I can’t tell you much about the movie (Early-onset Alzheimer’s. Boo.) but I loved that line the moment I heard it and committed it to memory.
Maybe something in me knew that I would one day aspire to live it in its fullest expression.
I really don’t have to elaborate on the nutritional value of food and how it sustains us. What has come to surprise me about food and what it means to me has more to do with the nourishment of my mind and soul.
I wish I had a riveting and/or heartwarming story on how I discovered the fascinating world of food, but the truth is I was bored out of my mind one day while browsing online and somehow landed on a food website. I was living alone at the time and it never occurred to me to cook for myself. The thought of cleaning the apartment was overwhelming enough so the fact that I actually decided on a recipe is testament to how bored I was.
I settled on a no-bake peanut butter pie which seemed pretty simple – peanut butter, cream cheese, and sugar in a graham crust popped in the freezer. It was all I could do not to open the freezer door every 5 minutes. When it was finally time, I was giddy as a schoolgirl.
A quick taste test revealed that the crust was rock hard but the filling was really yummy! Oh, the pride. I made that! But what happened to my crust? How can I make this even more delicious? As the saying goes, the cure for boredom is curiosity and I was hooked.
Not long after, I was offered to host a cooking show on TV and it was like the stars aligned.
I went on to do two more cooking shows since and it has been a blur of churning out all kinds of dishes (some successes, some epic fails) from my cramped kitchen, all with the guidance of chefs who have been beyond generous with their knowledge. What started out as personal entertainment turned into something like a "feeding program."
I think most people who live alone would agree that there’s always too much leftovers and things start to go bad. It broke my heart. To avoid wasting food, I started inviting people over and giving food away to friends. And I realized that watching loved ones eat my food gave me an unparalleled sense of joy. Nourishing them with what I labored over in the kitchen in turn nourished my spirit.
My "feeding program" really ended up feeding my soul. A little dramatic, I know, but true. It’s like how my Mom used to put together dinner for me when I got home from school and she would just watch me eat with a satisfied smile on her face. I understand that now.
Today, food to me is simply love. I love making it. I love reading about it. I love watching it. I love blogging about it. I love talking about it. I love taking pictures of it (I’m that annoying person.).
I love eating it. It loves me back. It’s how I express love. It’s how I experience love. And it’s entirely delicious.
PS: For the curious, my graham cracker crust was too hard because I packed it down too much. The pie is even more delicious with a drizzle of chocolate frosting. I know a killer chocolate frosting recipe. Will share soon. - Rappler.com