How to conquer a duck

A chef teaches a Thai cooking class at a local farmers market.

A chef teaches a Thai cooking class at a local farmers market.

Ramen noodles, pizza, and anything cheap and greasy are the staples of a college diet.

But they didn’t make many appearances in mine.

When I began college — more specifically, when I left the dining hall meal plan in sophomore year — I had to learn a lot about cooking. Many of my friends and coworkers ate out a lot, but I wanted to train myself to eat in as much as possible. (Translation: I don’t have enough money to eat out every day.)

I learned about cooking and baking, and tried to avoid the pizza and wing pitfall that lurked around every corner.

Here I am just a few years later. In a typical week, I eat out once, and only with other people. The fewer solo trips to the Moe’s down the street, the better.

Last week, I tried to expand my cooking horizons by going to a Thai cooking class. It’s offered at an international farmers market near my apartment. I went to it as part of a restaurant meetup group I’m in (yes, the one where I ate ox penis).

I learned how to make duck with red curry and lychees, which I thought would be more complicated than I could handle. I found out that, yes, it’s time-consuming — this is definitely a recipe for a weekend — but I can manage it.

I remember when I first started cooking for myself full-time during sophomore year of college, the prospect of steak scared me. I’ve progressed. I haven’t cooked that duck by myself yet, but I feel I can do it without burning down my kitchen.

I will conquer cooking. I will conquer fear. The duck shall be mine.


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