Is there such a thing as an Alternative Chef Attitude? We think yes.
We’ve been cooking with, and tasting different alternatives for years. We’ve spent many hours (and dollars!) trying commercial products and making homemade alternatives.
Not everything worked.
Even when it did, it rarely looked like this.
In fact, it usually looks a lot more like this:
This was the result of my 24th attempt at making a white sponge for a future episode of the show (and my son’s birthday). (I should add my hubby and I also gained a couple of kilos so that the food from the 24 attempts which were “alright” but not “yeah I’ve got it!” didn’t go to waste;-)
There is a great quote by Stephen McCranie that says it all when it comes to alternative cooking:
“The master has failed more times than the beginner has even tried”
So the top attitudes that you need to be a successful Alternative Chef, and that I think are part of any New Alternative Chef’s Kitchen Survival Kit are:
- A willingness to experiment. We’re going to give you a lot of tips and tricks. We’re going to show you a lot of experiments so that you don’t have to be so afraid to try it in your kitchen. But sooner or later, once you’re sure you’ve got the right ingredients for your dietary needs, you’re going to have to jump in there and give it a try. After a while you’re going to get the hang of how the new ingredients you’re cooking with will work. But there are probably going to be some failures, which brings us to the next attitude.
- A willingness to give it another go when failures happen. Because they will. If for no other reason than your taste buds haven’t adapted to where you need to be on the journey yet. Accept, there will be times when it might not look exactly like the original (that you can no longer eat) and it won’t taste exactly the same either.
- A willingness to like something new. There are some up-coming recipes that are going to knock your socks off as they are so tasty and you’ll find it hard to believe that they are gluten, dairy, soy, egg or meat free. But if you come into this with the attitude that it all sucks and tastes like cardboard, or is too hard, or takes too long, then you’re not going to be open to trying that recipe that changes it all for you.
My main piece of advice: If you’re willing to “give it a go” or “experiment” just don’t try that recipe for the first time on the day of the special event;-) Sometimes you can hit the jackpot the first time, but in the beginning, there’s usually a bit of tweaking involved.
Next I discuss having the “right” equipment in your kitchen.
Until then, happy cooking!
UPDATE: Since writing this post, we’ve updated our resources and put together a free 8 week Cooking with Alternatives ecourse. Find out more here.
By the way, I ended up creating a recipe for the “sponge that got away” and you can see it in our Free-from Trifle in our Kids Party Food recipe book.
And for some delicious free-from cake recipes, check out our Dessert Recipes book.