I eventually stopped taking lessons and started taking auditions. The problem, however, was that the jobs were incompatible ( both are done at night and the big nights are Friday and Saturday. For a couple years I would play music, but I'd miss the excitement of cooking. But if I was cooking, I'd miss playing music.
I think I've found a way for make both passions happy. I play with the Elgin Symphony by night and write about food by day. I really do cook at home, though cooking on a big scale isn't entirely over. Most years I go back to New Haven to cook for a dance festival over Memorial Day weekend: 200 people, 3 meals a day for 3 days. For the past couple summers I've worked at a Saturday farmer's market in Chicago selling mushrooms, giving out advice with the oyster mushrooms and talking over portobello possibilities. This fall I begin work on a book about Atticus Cafe, a cafe I helped open in 1981. It will be a book of recipes and stories.
Both chef and musician, John Ryan wrote the Just Good Food blog from 1996 through 2001.
This page created 1996
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