So, you ask, ‘Who is Derrick Prince?’ All I can say is, he ain’t the typical home cook…he ain’t the kinda guy that you’d think could hang with the best of Julia Childs…he ain’t the kinda guy that you’d think knows what a behcamel sauce is! He’s a person that personifies individualism, talent, creativity and what I’d say is a helluva nice ‘cuddly’ guy that I’m proud to say is part of my MCS2 family! Now, here’s what Derrick says about himself…
I cook. I play metal. Obviously its not that simple, but I love the definitive drama of the statement.
I cook. I cook a lot and I like to think I’m good at it, I might even be able to gather a few references for
you if you need them. I don’t have a set cooking style, French, Mexican, Italian, etc; the nationality or style is not important, making as much of my meal as I can is what I’m most about. Most people buy bread, I bought a 55lb bag of flour and a pound of active dry yeast. My wife Sharon eats well at home, but have to admit, sometimes she does have to wait a very long time for dinner.
I play in a hardcore/metal band called Drowned Sorrow. We’re heavier and more abrasive than most of you can imagine, we’re not a death metal band but I find myself telling people that we are just to avoid the series of “are you heavier than Metallica? Megedeth? Linkin Park?” questions. Generally, when people hear the term Death Metal they’ve had enough and stop asking questions.
Don’t take it too seriously.
You’re at home, you’re in your kitchen, you’re cooking for yourself and presumably family or people you care about – YOU NEED TO HAVE FUN. You’re learning, your experimenting and you had better make sure you’re enjoying yourself. As soon as you start feeling stress about food in your home kitchen, stop and walk away because you’re doing something wrong.
Its a recipe, not a law.
I always encourage people to think of recipes as guides or outlines, they are the skeletons of meals and you should flesh them out how you see fit. I don’t care if you have this recipe for sauce that James Beard has given multiple awards to and the chef who wrote it has more Michelin stars than the big dipper, if it calls for an ingredient you don’t like – LEAVE IT OUT! If it misses something that you think will make it even more awesome – ADD IT IN! Its your kitchen, you make the rules – and more importantly, you’re going to be eating it, so make it how you like.
Knives – They Better Be Sharp.
A knife’s sharpness is much more important than its brand or its price tag. You can make good food with crappy and inexpensive knives so long as they are sharp. Sharp knives will speed up your prep time, enhance your knife skills and make for a much safer cooking experience. If you’re thinking “Did he just say sharp knives are safer than dull ones?” Yes, I did. When knives are sharp, they do what they are supposed to do with very little effort and most of us cut ourselves when we’re trying too hard to make a knife do something that its too dull to do. So make sure your knives are sharp and don’t reach for that thing in your knife block that looks like a rounded sword, that doesn’t sharpen knives, it hones them. Check with your knife’s manufacturer to see what they recommend, if you don’t care about that and you’re looking for cheap and easy (and who isn’t?) go to a good hardware store or restaurant supply and get a knife sharpener. They’re only $10 or $15 and they’re a good way to get into knife care, but be warned it will lead to you wanting better knives and before long you’ll find yourself in front of a wet stone or oil stone once a month sharpening your knives by hand.
COME BACK and stay tuned to see what Derrick’s three tips are for seasoned cooks!