Paprika: a cook’s favourite ingredient

In Chez Jeremy on February 12, 2011 at 11:41 am

It’s the weekend and my thoughts turn from work to home life. Now I know many of you wonder what happens when I close the door of my Kensington flat behind me. What does a small man with such a big salary get up to? Simple pleasures, of course.

I hope you’re not disappointed by that confession. There are many people out there who like to live the high life by proxy. They unfortunately don’t have the means to afford luxury after luxury so they experience it vicariously through people like me and blogs like this. And sometimes I deliver on that front. But today I’m going to discuss basic creativity in the kitchen because in creation there’s satisfaction. And to keep you satisfied, I bring you a wonderful iPad app called Paprika.

Imagine the scene. Close your eyes if it helps. We’re in my pad (not iPad – that comes in a second). In my kitchen to be precise. Down on my knees from the incomparable Ayo is playing. A selection of fresh vegetables, meat and exotic spices from Borough Market is sitting on a chopping board. In one hand I’m holding a rather large Global knife as recommended by bad-boy chef, Anthony Bourdain in Kitchen Confidential (As one reviewer of the book so aptly said, ‘It’s not exactly Delia.’). In the other, I’m gently swirling a glass of Viret, Colonnades 2005 from Artisan Wines. My iPad is propped up on the stainless-steel worktop by means of the delightfully simple MoviePeg designed by a creative guru who really is a guru, Brendan Dawes (sorry, Sebastian). A Jo Malone Pomegranate Noir candle is burning out of focus in the background. Can’t you just smell its aroma mixed with the crushed cumin seeds and lime zest? Paprika is loaded on the screen and I’m following instructions. All my recipes are on there, some that I downloaded, some that I invented myself. For the purpose of this post, imagine that I’m rustling up spicy, sticky chicken. Delicious! Back to Paprika. The app looks as gorgeous as my cooking. I use it to make grocery lists for the meals and dinner parties I’ve planned. The damned thing even stays on screen the whole time I’m cooking so that I don’t have to swipe my iPad with a honey-covered finger. How clever is that!

Eyes still closed? Great. I drop the spicy, sticky chicken onto the griddle just as the door buzzer sounds …

Catch you guys later!

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