Ryan Feldman

Your Personal Chef At Sonoran Winds

Having natural talent doesn’t make you an expert on the subject. Instead nurture your talents by learning what every key element is needed that makes your talent so special. In my humble lifetime, I’ve learned a few important life lessons, both in and outside the kitchen. First is that a strong foundation is key to the success of anything you do in life. Unfortunately, I didn’t learn that until I was in my twenties and half way through my culinary degree. 

Where my journey began

First discovering my culinary talents was largely due to my upbringing. My mother, who had many talents, only cooking was never going to be one of them. If there is or ever was such a thing as a cooking gene, then it skipped a generation in my family. Having to eat a steady diet of burnt and or undercooked food growing up. Made meal time at home, something I never looked forward to for many years. 


Not until my older sister was so sick of a long string close to enable dinners one week that she stood up and asked if we could have something better for dinner. My mother told her if she didn’t like it then she could make everyone's dinner from now on. That was all my older sister needed to begin teaching herself how to cook. Then not before long she started showing me how to use everything in the kitchen. Beginning a sort of dinner cycle in our house.


The next important lesson that I have now learned to cherish the most, took a while to sink in. One of my first culinary instructors told me that there is no such thing as a recipe. Everything anyone ever does to make anything in or outside of the kitchen is not a recipe, but a skilled technique. What is really written down are the steps it takes to complete a task. 


First hearing this idea, after I came to this school with the intention of filling my head with thousands of recipes never allowed me to even consider what that really meant. Years later after I began running my first kitchen by myself did I finally realize that you make something as simple as an omelette without using any eggs. 


This important lesson has made me redefine my approach to food. All ingredients, no matter how insignificant, should all be treated the same. There is no one superior food over any others. Fads and special diets will keep coming and going. Inside of following trends, I’ve learned that combining my two defining principles have allowed me to understand food in a different way. You will never need any one ingredient to make any recipe. Thinking like this has opened a new outlook on food and life for me. 

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