|the curds before draining|
I can clearly remember my reaction to a tv commercial from quite a few years ago where a man was talking about his cheese making hobby (I think it may have been an advertisement for a credit card). What? People don't just make cheese at home. I'm not sure where this idea came from, but I've recently realized that it just isn't true. People make cheese at home. And without any special sorts of equipment or ingredients.
|the finished cheese on flatbread with tomato salad|
The same day that Matthias made his first batch of cheese, I made my first batch of ice cream. We have had a hand-me-down, hand crank ice cream maker for at least 12 years, maybe more, and until this summer when I decided to try it out and make gooseberry sorbet, I had never used it. Why? Because I had the idea that you can't make good ice cream with a hand crank ice cream maker. Well, that simply is not true. I made strawberry ice cream (modifying this recipe) and then less than a week later I made peach ice cream (using the same recipe with my own variations).
It was not hard, the hand crank ice cream maker worked perfectly and the ice cream was delicious.
And so I started thinking about misconceptions and limitations and fear. Fear because I think that often fear creates the misconceptions by which we limit ourselves. Sometimes it isn't even our fear, but others' fears.
- growing roses is hard/a lot of work
- greyhounds need a lot of exercise/lots of room to run
- you need a recipe in order to cook/make something
- you need a pattern in order to sew/crochet/knit/embroider something
- watercolors are hard to use
- you need to have a natural talent to be good at drawing/painting/art
- you must always wash, tone and moisturize your facial skin twice a day
- the sun is bad for you
- never mix plaids/stripes and other patterns
- redheads should not wear pink
- orchids are hard to grow
- bread dough needs to be kneaded and kneaded and kneaded in order to make a good loaf
- you can't bake really good bread at home
- cats and dogs don't get along
- centipedes are bad to have in your basement
The more I thought about it, the more I came up with. My list kept growing with misconceptions that I've abandoned. I can only imagine what else I might still believe that just isn't true.
It makes me sad to think about all the limitations I have placed on myself over the years just because I didn't know any better. Make cheese at home? Yes, you can. And, actually, I urge you to try. This first cheese that we made only needs two ingredients. Milk and lemon juice. Heat the milk. Add the lemon juice. Strain and drain the curds. Easy. (See Ricki Carroll's full Lemon Cheese recipe here). And delicious.
All this thinking has made me open my eyes and open my mind. When I feel myself saying or thinking "you can't do that", I challenge the thought. The only limits on possibility are the limits which you and I place there ourselves.
Here's to abandoning those misconceptions and trying new things!