· Grit,Resilience,Persistence

The Secret Family Recipe I Never Had

Do you have a secret family recipe that has been passed down from generations? Perhaps written on a worn 3x5 index card that has long lost any measure of stiffness, having been held by many hands covered in flour or smudged by pasta sauce on countless holidays throughout the decades.

Unfortunately, or not, I don't have such a recipe.

I learned to cook around my late twenties through trial and error. Lots of error. I got a little better in my early thirties, moving from following recipes from the internet to creating my own and putting my spin on classic recipes, especially Filipino ones.

I'd make adobo, afritada, tinola, caldereta using meats uncommonly used in these dishes, mixed with vegetables sourced here in the US where I am now instead of the local Filipino produce they're typically paired with.

They've turned out pretty good based on the positive reception of the people I've fed in the last 15 years.

Don't let the absence of something passed down to you be an excuse not to explore what's out there. Don't wait for a mentor to guide you in what you can do or even excel at. Like many things in life, it's just a matter of putting yourself out there followed by a lot of trial and error.

For a stretch of time, you'll go through an up and down cycle of frustration doubting your abilities with moments of confidence creeping in but gradually building up. And at some point, you'll get a glimpse of how far you'd come, how better you've gotten, how skillful you now are, when someone tries whatever it is that you have created, whether it's a new business, a product, a service, a book, a piece of art, or a steaming bowl of chicken adobo and exclaim, "This is fantastic."

A Life Well Lived

"I know I'm on the right path because things stopped being easy." - Anonymous

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