Well, this past week I attended my 12th year of the International Fancy Food Show at the Javitz Center in New York. If you have never been, imagine a land the size of a few football stadiums with little kiosks , one after another, where one can learn about new food products and stuff one’s face with samples of food items from lobster dip to Fresh Mozzarella to organic 75% dark chocolate to pickled peppers and artichokes for 7 straight hours. Pure heaven….
To get to the show from my home, I took the commuter bus and was in awe of a woman who departed Port Authority looking like a completely different version of the original suburban lady who embarked in Montclair. She applied make up the ENTIRE trip to make this successful transformation. I couldn’t help but see myself in this woman…but in reverse.
You see, I have a confession to make (yes, another confession): For many years (O.K., 10 years) I sort of “bent” the truth to get into the Fancy Food Show. For the first few years I was an “assistant” to my friend who was a writer for the NY Post, “helping” him find interesting and new products to write about. For a few years after that, I was the President of my made up company but one which I had intended to start someday called “Mother’s Milk Cafe” (name created by friend Nancy). This company, with potential partner and friend, Linda, was a healthy catering company for new mothers. All the food would be nursing-mother-friendly, like no broccoli which would give the baby gas, fenugreek spice in the dishes to increase milk flow, etc. Good idea, huh? (see my video below with the other good ideas at the Show as well as my celebrity interview with the Top Chef lady and restauranteuse).
Anyhoo, I would have these companies listed on my big name tag that I wore around my neck for all to see and ask questions about. Although I could always answer the vendors questions without missing a beat, I always felt a touch of guilt because I was a liar, I didn’t really hold these positions and I didn’t really deserve to be a guest at the Fancy Food Show.
Well, I deal with a lot of clients who feel they are living a lie like I was and like the lady on the bus. There are a lot of us who feel we are just getting by , that if people knew the dirty little secret of what we actually do to get by, like buy unhealthy prepared food or spend a fortune on prepared foods, we’d be busted and feel even worse.
People, just as I am now legit and can hold my kitcheny head up high with my Take Back the Kitchen name tag, please follow my example. It took me years of sneaking into the Fancy Food Show, feeling the guilt and fear that I would be found out, to change my ways. I truly thought about what I wanted, considered what was standing in my way, sought out the support I needed to achieve my goals and worked really hard to get Take Back the Kitchen going.
So, get those aprons tied, put on that hair net and believe that it is never too late to realize your dream of making a pot roast, some potatoes and carrots and a side salad from scratch. It really can be done, I promise.
As for the lady on the bus, if you are reading this, you were beautiful when you entered the bus and you don’t need all that make up to prove anything to anybody, including yourself. Let’s all be the best that we can be for ourselves and our families, healthfully and honestly.
Here is a recipe using the delicious all natural and new Cajun seasoning I sampled at the Show. They were nice enough to give me a VAT of it to bring home. This easy popcorn recipe is a great, healthy snack:
P.S. here are the links to the TBK winners of the Food Show in the video below:
Best restaurant and celebrity siting: www.culinariane.com
Best community activist chocolate: www.romanicoschocolate.com
Best Parents Who Rock performer’s crispy cracker: www.34-degrees.com
Best seasoning name: www.slapyamama.com
A big bowl of Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s reduced fat popcorn
Slap Ya Mama brand all natural Cajun seasoning (or any other Cajun seasoning)
Sprinkle desired amount of seasoning on popcorn and indulge…http://www.youtube.com/get_player