Which came first? The chicken or the egg?
Ahh. The classic debate. The perennial mind-boggler. So what be the answer to this feathery riddle?
For me (theologically speaking), the chicken would have had come first. Well, I imagine it came first. Unless eggs popped out of the air and then hatched into fluffy yellow chicks when God spoke the words “let birds fly above the earth across the vault of the sky” as He did in Genesis 1. Come to think of it, that would have been a cute scene. But anyway, it’s more likely that those words formed full-grown chickens, not hatchlings.
However, culinarily speaking (i.e. relating to my oh-so-fabulous cooking skills) – the egg did, the egg did, the egg definitely did. Haha! I learned to cook eggs before I learned to cook chickens properly, as the rest of this tale would tell.
One time, a friend asked me to tell him what particular thing did I not – definitely did not – do. He said, for example, people would never find him playing basketball. So what was it that they wouldn’t find me doing? After racking up my brain for something (I’m a Jane of all trades), I finally gave him this answer: I didn’t cook.
Me cooking would involve me heating up a frying pan, breaking an egg into the pan, and exclaiming, “Viola! Sunny side up!”
It’s not that I don’t know how to cook. I just didn’t have much of an opportunity to do so, having had to live in several dorms for several couple of years. I did go through a culinary season from 2005 to 2006 (my housemates and I took turns cooking meals). But after that – kapoof! It was back to eggs, instant noodles, bread, tuna, cereal, and everything and anything that you can prepare in a jiffy.
However, in an effort to learn something new (and since I’ve exhausted all the possible methods of cooking up an egg), I decided to try my hand at real cooking once again.
Thus, one not so haggard day after work, I bought a whole chicken.
Guess I was a bit haggard still though. Because I forgot to ask the guys at the grocery store to chop the chicken up.
I honestly don’t know what I was thinking. Like that chicken would manage to magically divide itself into smaller pieces when I’d put it into the refrigerator, right? Good thing our kitchen had a butcher’s knife lying around. Okay. As if I knew how to use that kind of knife.
For the remainder of that night, I was faced with the challenge of trying to chop the chicken up. On the floor. With a small chopping board propped on top of a larger tray. To keep the blood and flesh from splattering over the floor. Most of the blood and flesh anyway.
Long story short, I did manage to cut the chicken into good-sized pieces. Our kitchen floor looked like a scene of a crime though. And afterwards, I was so frustrated that my dinner consisted of two mangoes only and no poultry. I had decided to cook the detestable fowl the following day instead.
When I finally decided to face the poultry, I discovered something – I CAN cook! Cook pretty well, even if my tastebuds do say so themselves. I have no idea what to call the dish that I cooked up (chicken + oyster sauce + mixed veggies) but – breakthrough of breakthroughs and miracle of miracles – it was the first real meal I cooked up since 2006. Hurrah!
And so for the past two weeks, I’ve been cooking up decent dinners and decent packed lunches for myself. Yipee. My future children would have happy, happy tummies. Haha.
And the moral of the story?
Don’t be so comfortable with something that you’d keep yourself from risking out to try.
Really. If I didn’t have that initial battle with the chicken, I’d probably have Egg Recipe No. 56 for lunch right now.