In It, To Win It: Cooking Well

Frequent Buffet readers know that I am an Anthony Bourdain fan. Bourdain is best known for his book that put him on the map, “Kitchen Confidential” (which I’ve still never read!), and his television show “No Reservations” (which I watch all the time). Not too long ago I got to have a brief meeting with him at an event where I had him autograph the article I wrote about pho. I regularly read his blog on the Travel Channel website for further insights from his travels and for often comical posts about other odd occurrences in his life. He also wrote a fantastic post about the passing of Harvey Pekar that I can’t help but share.

A few weeks back I saw a post on Bourdain’s blog titled “In it, to Win It”, which brought to my attention that Bourdain’s publisher, HarperCollins, is holding a contest to be featured in the paperback edition of Bourdain’s book “Medium Raw” when it releases. (By the way, “Medium Raw” is my new favorite Bourdain book. I recommend it highly.) Not only will the winner get published, but they also win $10,000!

The first thing I did was email the link over to my friend Greg from What Greg Eats. Being a writer and a foodie, I knew he would have some thoughts on what to write to answer the contest question of, “What does it mean to cook food well?” And indeed he did, a few days later he submitted “Timeless – My Father’s Kitchen”. In an odd coincidence, although talking about entirely different ideas, my father also came into play when I set out to write my essay.

Whereas Greg’s essay is a sentimental tribute to his father’s cooking, mine focused on the myths and misconceptions on cooking well that I started to learn about when my father developed heart disease. I came up with something honest that I believe in greatly when it comes to food. Oddly, I guess my essay could also be considered a tribute to my father.

Here’s the deal folks, the preliminary round of the contest will be judged on the following criteria: creativity (30%), originality (30%), writing style (30%), and (10%) will be determined by the voting of visitors to the contest website. Based on these criteria, ten finalists will be selected. The ten finalist selections will be read by Anthony Bourdain, who will select one essay as the final contest winner. It seems highly unlikely that I’ll win, but I’m still excited to participate. It’s nice that voting has such a small percentage, so it doesn’t turn into a clicking contest as opposed to a writing contest. Of course, that said, I’d love it if you guys took a moment to read my essay here. If you like it, please take a moment to vote for it. You can vote once a day, so if you’re feeling charitable you can go back and vote for me again tomorrow, or you can vote for my friend Greg’s great essay, or a combination of both! Also, if any other Buffet readers enter the contest, definitely leave the link to your essay in the comments section! I’d love to support my readers!