The Chile Underground is a meeting place for foodies who appreciate hot dishes. The Chile Doctor and his friends and family manage the site, when they’re not trying out new dishes, adding to a cookbook, or (gasp!) working.
We all have Jessica, owner of Jessica’s Cookbooks, to thank for the Chile Doctor’s obsession with recipes. (He brought his own obsession with eating to the situation.) Several years back, Jessica gave the Chile Doctor an empty binder for Christmas. The binder was artfully decorated by Jessica, with a hand-drawn invitation to “fill it up” with recipes.
Needless to say, that single, one-inch ring binder is no longer sufficient to hold the stockpile. The collection has burgeoned to over 1,600 recipes, contained in eight binders that fill a major bookshelf. And the “book” still grows weekly.
Jessica’s Mom is instrumental in this effort as well, dutifully tasting recipes and rating their quality and flavor. She chops and sorts and stirs, and does many other sous-chef duties, so the Chile Doctor can concoct his dishes without the distraction of menial details.
There are several other characters in this play (comedy, tragedy or farce; you decide), including Sonia the Red Golden; GT Purrmotor, Spooky and Feliz, the dog-training cats [Note: Feliz passed on at age 15, and GT has purred off into the unknown; Archie and Suzy Q have moved in]; at least one foster Golden at any time; and the
hapless victims friends and family who get invited over to sample recipes whenever the Chile Doctor goes on a cooking binge.
About the Chile Doctor
Hi, I’m Mitch White, a.k.a. The Chile Doctor. (Other aliases redacted to protect the innocent – Ed.) I have lots of hobbies and interests, when work isn’t interfering: Training dogs, photography, astronomy, reading and writing fiction, chess. And cooking, of course! I love to cook almost as much as I love to eat.
Teaching my daughter to cook when she was young led to the Dad’s Cookbook collection, and from there it was an easy hop, skip and stumble to writing a cooking blog. Which, unfortunately, I’m now addicted to.
I’m trained as a mathematician and chemist, and my consulting takes me around the world. I have nearly a million miles left in my airline account, and when last I checked I’ve been to something like thirty-five countries on five continents, none of whom has ever extradited me. (Successfully, I mean.)
I help manufacturing companies all over the globe improve their productivity and quality, and it’s a wonderful way to meet new friends and learn about their cultures and cuisines. I always find time to sample the local fare extensively and repeatedly; I AM a statistician, after all! Sample and test, sample and test; it’s a hard life, so I don’t ask anybody else to suffer with me. Except when my family can come along, of course.
I maintain some ties to academia, and have taught standard and short courses on everything from physical chemistry to industrial careers. Whenever I teach others I learn more than they do! And as Jessica’s Mom says, it keeps me out from under foot.
Research keeps the mind sharp and inquiring, which doesn’t hurt a thing when you’re looking for new recipes and techniques. I bet you never thought of science as a way to support your cooking obsession! Making a great meal, though, is applied science at its finest. Besides, you can always eat your mistakes. (Or feed them to Sonia the Red.)
(I realize the picture doesn’t do me justice, but it’s the best I could do on short notice. Besides, Sean and I are this tight; I’ve got (nearly) every one of his movies, after all. I’ll put one of me up here, as soon as I can find one…)