The Chef in My Kitchen

I was surprised to find myself intimidated by the New York chef in my kitchen. If he had been cooking alone, I would simply have left him to get the job done. As it was, the menu was mine, and I had to cook beside him. Granted, I had more experience than he did, but he had standards and techniques above mine.

021817 NY chef in my kitchen.jpg

The chef was none other than grandson Nathaniel (17). Why, you want to know, was he wearing his full uniform? It’s because that’s what he was wearing when he came home from school Friday afternoon. He has academics in the morning and attends classes for culinary arts in the afternoon. He had half an hour to pack after coming home on the bus, and John picked him up for the long drive to North Carolina. Driving through the night, they arrived here at 11:30 Saturday morning. As soon as they came in the house, I admired the checkered pants and white jacket. Nathaniel put on the apron, still sporting a bit of tomato soup on the front. For the full effect, he donned the hat, as well.

We sat down to visit until time to cook our main meal, and he offered to help. I was thrilled to accept such assistance, but the balance had changed in a subtle way. I was aware that he wouldn’t cook with dull knives or Teflon pans. He is learning to present dishes with flair for eye appeal, and he is a purist at heart. He chopped the onion, celery, and green pepper for the fried rice while I cooked the broccoli and salmon. I set the table and got out serving dishes as he finished cooking the rice and the Hollandaise sauce. We had no garnishes on the plates, but we enjoyed our meal with conversation and laughter. What more could you want?

021817 Salmon, broccoli, fried rice.jpg

36 thoughts on “The Chef in My Kitchen

      1. I have my original stainless steel pans from when I got married and they are still wonderful. However, after becoming a camper years ago, I would not ever want to be without my cast iron. I have collected those pans over the years from yard sales and flea markets.

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  1. You are lucky to have a good chef in a grandson. And he is only 17 and he still likes to visit with his grandparents and even cook for them !
    Your kitchen looks too beautiful to cook in- I am sure Nathaniel loved it there- looks picture perfect.
    Susie

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      1. We live in a house that has been given to us by the hospital my husband works in. What I like about it is the sunshine and the window ledge. What I did not like about it was that we didn’t have a pantry( store room as we call it) or a work area. After about 10 years of living here, a couple of months back, I decided to spend some money and get a few shelves from IKEA. Now I feel I have some more storage space.
        But your kitchen is like one of those kitchens we see on cookery shows – like Ina Garten’s kitchen.
        Susie

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    1. I’m glad you have shelves now that make your kitchen more user-friendly. Many newer homes have nice kitchens now. I’m grateful every day that ours is large and has plenty of storage space. I’m going to expect happy meals to come from it every day!

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    1. Nathaniel is here for a full week, so we have to enjoy him quickly. This week he has an interview at a college that is about 4 hours away. We were excited about it, but then we realized that if he went to college down here, he’d have to spend his vacations with his parents up north. He has another year of high school, though, so there is a bit of waiting ahead.

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  2. I once again, understand this-my son works in a high end restaurant and another sons’ friend does as well-The kitchen is theirs when they are here-however they ask me to show them my old school dishes-and I like that. Some how they make do with a paring knife and iron frying haha!pans!!

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  3. It’s so good to have N home for a whole week!! Sure do enjoy it when he visits!

    I am a cast iron user! Had to cast my vote in there! Love them, love them, love them!

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  4. Kudos to John for that long drive through the night to bring Nathaniel home for a visit. The meal looks delicious and it is good to know that his high school offers culinary arts as an option. Such a good skill.
    My- almost 25 year old son loves to cook and although he’s never had any formal training, he is a clever and inventive chef. He was living at home for a year after college but is in Charleston SC now.

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