Oh he’ll start with a recipe in hand. Or rather, a HANDFUL of recipes — all for similar (but not identical) dishes.
Then he picks the best of what he likes from each of them, and he creates his “masterpiece”.
I figure I haven’t died yet, so I’m content to let him keep experimenting on me.
He definitely likes to “mix it up a bit.”
Actually, he likes to spice it up, and sauce it up a bit!
For example, if he’s making fried rice… it’s spicy/saucy fried rice with all kinds of leftover condiments he’s found in the fridge. (Oh, and some garlic too!)
If he’s cooking steak or chicken on the grill, it’s spicy/saucy beef or chicken — with some combination of rub-on allspice, barbecue sauce, Wild Turkey bourbon, and whatever else sounds appealing at the moment.
(…oh, and some garlic!)
In fact, you can almost always bet that WHATEVER he’s cooking will include these “fine” ingredients:
…no matter what it is!
And somehow, it works.
Listen to Bud Light’s Real Men of Genius ”Mr. Gasoline Barbeque Grill Starter”:
Jim’s A SAUCY Kind Of Guy
He’s of the theory: “If they bottle it, it must be good.”
However, after he recently he told me that the Spicy Beef Stew he made (which tasted DELISH, by the way) contained ketchup, mustard, garlic, and “the rest of that 3-year-old hot sauce” — which, for some reason, survived every move we ever made between Florida and Tennessee!
I realized, I DON’T want to know anymore!
How Chef Jim Got His Start
This all started way back when we were dating. Jim always LOVED going “above and beyond” by getting the key to my apartment and surprising me with fancy dinners on occasion.
Which was all well & good… until I realized he could never explain to me which ingredients were used to make up “such a delightful flavor”.
That’s held true to this day.
To find out “exactly” what he puts into any dish to make it come alive, you just have to be there.
He’s said on several occasions, “You don’t want to know.” And finally, I think I believe him.
(For the record, he thinks I’m a pretty good cook, too.)