Spring has sprung. The weather has been lovely; it’s the start of holidays and weddings and birthdays; and so far, I’ve been feeling zero percent creative.
A lot of this lack of creativity stems from a deeper thing I encounter on a daily basis: lots of anxiety. I don’t think I’ve talked about it here, but for pretty much forever, I deal with high emotional anxiety. It comes in different forms depending on the situation. With relation to cooking and feeling creative, it’s something like this:
Ideal: I come home after work, read through cookbooks, brainstorm a recipe/new blogpost, free write, recipe write, make something amazing by the end of the week.
Reality: I come home after work. I’m tired. I said yes to a friend who’s been asking to hang out. My room is messy. I read a cookbook but feel like I’m not good enough to make anything in it. I watch Netflix. I feel bad for watching Netflix. I lie in bed scrolling Instagram for beautifully made desserts, and then I stress out over the next day/week/weekend.
This cycle repeats itself week after week and it’s been driving me nuts. It makes me feel like I learned nothing in Paris last year. Or that my years of working in pastry have been forgotten. Or that I can’t write like I used to. Or that I’ll never fulfill my long-term vision of what I want to do and be in the food world. Or I’ll never get better at anything I love doing.
So with all that, I’ve felt stagnant. I made this tart a couple times last week in an attempt to circumvent this feeling and get something, anything, created. It’s not a perfect tart. The caramel oozes if not reduced enough; the berries aren’t always sweet enough (the season just started), and the crust shrunk a bit. But it’s something. And I WILL say, it’s delicious, especially with a hint of orange blossom in the whipped cream to give it an unexpected boost of spring. I hope that I’ll find a similar boost for myself, and in the meanwhile, I’ll be working (hopefully) on some new recipes and writing to bring here soon.