One of the things that I’ve been doing through the pandemic has been seriously working on improving my cooking skills.
...it provides me with an escape after a day spent working on the new book.
...it offers the beautiful opportunity to work on a new skill, which keeps me challenged.
...it allows me the chance to create special moments for the people I most love.
Which brings me to cacio e pepe...
...without a doubt, this Roman pasta dish is my favorite meal in the world.
It’s made up of three simple ingredients: pecorino cheese, pepper and tonnarelli pasta.
Yet here’s the thing, though it only has three elements, getting the calibration of the dish right so the cacio e pepe is proper takes years of experience.
I’ve been trying to make it yet it often turns out to be a mess. At times I use too much of the pasta water in finishing the pasta with the cheese in the saucepan. At other times the heat has been too high so the pecorino is clumpy. Sometimes I forget to toast the pepper, so the flavor is mediocre.
My finest attempt is shown below:
[The basil leaves are for aesthetics only and are not part of the traditional recipe; my friends in Rome would disown me if they saw them].
A few lessons that will serve you well as a creative leader:
1. Making something simple often takes years of practice because the technique becomes so much more important than the ingredients. Stay with and embrace the process. You’ll get to great. Eventually.
2. Making a mess is part of making progress. There can be no winning without stumbling.
3. Learn from the best so you don’t practice poor performance. We build expertise by studying at the sides of genuine experts. You cannot rise to exceptionalism on your own.
Hope these insights help. And if you’d like to use this time of enforced quietude to grow your game massively then please keep reading...
These are deeply uncertain times. To help you navigate them with confidence, optimism and excellence as well as to thank you for being a loyal follower of my work, I’m doing something super-special...
I’ve decided to give those who follow my work complete access to the audiobook of my #1 bestseller The Greatness Guide. No charge whatsoever.
...my way of saying thank you for being in our community.
Wishing you and your family all the best.