I just finished reading Chris Guillebeau’s book entitled The Happiness of Pursuit: Finding the Quest That Will Bring Purpose To Your Life. He reflects on his 10-year quest to visit every country in the world. In his travels, Chris met scores of kindred spirits whose quests enriched their lives and satisfied inner longings.
By Chris’ definition, a quest:
- Has a clear goal and specific end point
- Presents a clear challenge
- Requires sacrifice
- Is often driven by a calling or sense of mission
- Requires a series of small steps and incremental progress toward the goal
A core premise of the book is that there are adventures awaiting us all.
For the past 20 years, I’ve had the Fields of Greens vegetarian cookbook on my bookshelf, and yet I’ve only made a few of the recipes (all delicious). I’ve decided that my quest will be to make all 284 recipes (or a reasonable approximation thereof) between now and December 31, 2016. This undertaking will be no small feat. The recipes are challenging and leverage a whole host of ingredients that I’ve never used before.
Having made this decision at 4:00 pm last Tuesday, I opted to make that evenings’ meal my first undertaking. I set off to the store to buy the ingredients for Spring Vegetable Curry with Sri Lankan Spices accompanied by Basmati Rice and Mango-Papaya Chutney. I found everything I needed at New Seasons and then dashed home to start cooking.
Spike arrived a little after 6:00 pm to find the kitchen in a state of complete disarray. (I really should have a taken a picture of it!) I told him about the quest while assuring him that meat would remain a factor in our diets. He then offered to help… thank goodness! With four hands hard at work, we finally got dinner on the table at 7:30 pm. It was WONDERFUL! Clean-up took about an hour.
Admittedly, I choose one of the more challenging meals right out of the gate. However, I expect to get more efficient with food preparation once I get the hang of it.