Related Posts with Thumbnails

Thursday, October 3, 2013

The Chopped Basket's Guide to Life

I love Chopped!

Image courtesy of

If I was a chef...and if I could cook...reasonably well...I would so be on that show.

Can you see me?

I would sashay my plate over to my judges du jour, wax poetic about my enigmatic culinary masterpiece and then happy dance my way graciously accept my $10,000, following a competitive kick-ass dessert round.

I can cook, pretty well, but what's even more important than flavor palates and kitchen skills are the lessons I have learned from watching professional amateurs duke it out in a culinary knock-down-drag-out.

1. Be creative. These baskets are hard. It seems like only a sadist genius would think to mix and match the ingredients that the chefs see in those baskets? Most times, there seems to be no logic involved.

Image courtesy of

Yet, that's the thing about life. There are times when it makes no sense, but you have to make something of the chaos you've been given. It takes creative thinking, but think outside the box. Try something new. It could turn out delicious.

And if it doesn't...

2. Adapt. An appliance can malfunction or a chef can forget to check on a hot pan and burn it to a crisp.

Real life has road blocks, and you have to adapt, or you'll run out of time and lose it all. Try a new approach. Throw away what no longer serves you, and start fresh.

And finally...

3. Watch the time. I cringe when I watch chefs play with those last critical seconds, hoping they have enough time to get everything on the plate. Sometimes they do, but sometimes they don't. Or what's worse is when they finish early and then wait it out, squandering what remaining time they have left.

Time is precious. And we're not promised the time that the Chopped chefs are given. As my mom says, tomorrow is promised to no one. What are you waiting for? Get everything on your plate. Leave nothing to what-ifs.

And make good use of your time. Don't work it/sleep it/worry it away. You get one round in this life before you get chopped. Make it delicious!

The Chopped kitchen will probably never see my smiling face show those baskets who's boss, but you can be sure that in addition to skillful technique and the clever canoodling of mystery ingredients, I have learned some very important life lessons.

It's not about your's what you do with you basket that counts. Cook it up. Savor every last sweet morsel before you get chopped.

Bon provecho!


  1. Cool! That was such a positive and inspiring way to start off my early day. Thank you! Also, isn't it funny that we can look in a pantry stocked to the brim and a refrigerator that couldn't possibly hold more food and think "I have nothing to make for dinner. Let's order pizza". Maybe we should make a challenge to cook with only what's already in our home for two weeks. I bet we'd use everything! :)

    1. Hi Theresa! Thank so much for your comments. I wrote about just this topic back in June after watching the film, Dive. My husband likes having food on hand, I like shopping's a compromise. :-) Thanks again for your visit. Happy Friday!

  2. I love chopped, and this post was awesome, thanks for sharing it!

    I could never be on this show. Even if I had cooking abilities beyond following a recipe (which I am AWESOME at), my nerves would kick me out of the first round.

    Stopping by from NE bloggers.


    1. Hi Nicole! Thanks so much for stopping by. I would completely psych myself out too. I have friends that have had Chopped's a place to start. :-) Thanks again!

  3. What an excellent correlation here. I'm with you on Chopped though. I don't think I'd survive any of that. Some of those ingredients are nuts. But thinking about it in conjunction with life... nice idea. Stopping over via the Weekend Wander Blog Hop.

  4. Great post and great advice! I love how you wove it together..