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It’s okay to mess up…

April 2, 2016

Today I completely messed up the pesto meant for our mozzarella and beefsteak tomato lunch.  Quite stupid of me really – I chucked loads of the woody basil stalks, along with the leaves and stems, into the blender with the pine nuts and garlic cloves.  Not sure why; I’ve made pesto hundreds of times and never done that before.  Anyway, the result was inedible – every bite was filled with chewy sinewy stalks.  Yuk.

A few months ago, I probably would have given myself a really hard time about that.  In fact, maybe even a few weeks ago.  Today, I just shrugged it off, made a conscious mental note not to repeat that mistake and ‘painted’ the tomatoes with some of the pesto oil, rescuing the intended dish as best as I could.

So what’s changed?  Well, it’s actually stemmed from my day job, where there’s a reinvigorated emphasis on our personal development in the workplace.  Thanks to a talk from an awesome colleague, Linney,  I’ve recently been inspired to create something of a funky personal development plan (PDP) (which I’m very pleased with and so have shared a picture of it below) and the thinking behind this has leaked (in a good way) into my home life.  I already have a personal five year plan, which helps me to focus on the things I want to spend my spare time doing and the things I want to learn, but it doesn’t guide me with the ‘how’ I learn.


What creating my PDP at work has done is to spark the realisation that every opportunity we have to learn is a valuable one and, instead of spending time berating and criticising myself, I should be figuring out what that opportunity has taught me. Maybe it’ll be about what I need to do to get it right next time.  This continual cycle of improvement is vastly rewarding in cooking – after all, who wouldn’t want their food to taste better and better every time they eat it?!

Today I learnt that thick basil stalks have no place in a pesto – and that I really am quite good at improvising.  What is it that my husband always says? Oh  yeah: ‘Every day’s a school day’!

So, it’s okay to mess up.  Just make sure you learn something from it.

Have you had any recent cooking disasters?


  1. Great lesson on messing up. Don’t ask about cooking disasters. I have had many. 😛

    That PDP looks great. You are right about learning. There is something or the other every single day. I am also a learner and my quest to know new things never stops.

    Stopping by from the Daily Post Prompt page and here is my post –

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