David Harford

A reintroduction of sorts from the new-ish me

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I have seen a few stories on Medium of late where people have been writing an introduction about themselves after joining. I never did that when I started writing here, and even if I had, the things I would have written about myself would have been incorrect. I have been lying to myself as well as everyone else — and only now have I come to see the truth.

I have been on Medium for quite some time now but have struggled to find my way, mirroring my life of late. …


Eleven tips that will shape your approach to cooking and give your food a restaurant-quality edge

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Purchase good quality knives and keep them sharp.

Believe it or not, you’re more likely to hurt yourself with a blunt knife than with a sharp knife. A dull blade requires more pressure to cut, increasing the chance that the knife will slip, whereas a sharp knife ‘bites’ the surface more readily. And if you do cut yourself, a sharper blade leaves a cleaner cut, which heals a lot quicker.

Looking after your knives is the hallmark of a good chef, and keeping them sharp is just one part of it. First of all, of course, you need to part your hard-earned cash with some. You don’t need a lot of knives. A good cooks knife, a paring knife (vegetable knife) and a bread knife are all you need. If you like to get your fish whole, for instance, then a filleting knife will more than likely come in handy. Head to your local catering wholesaler and try a few out. Hold them in your hand, feel the weight of them, and see which one you find most comfortable for you. Be prepared; you’re going to pay a lot. Good knives are expensive, but look after it, keep them sharp, and they will last forever. You’ll need a sharpening steel to keep a sharp edge. And a wet stone, in case you need to get the edge back. Never put them in the dishwasher. Wash with warm soapy water and dry immediately. The old adage is true, look after your knives, and they will look after you. …


Getting back into the kitchen after a six-year absence in the hope that I can get my passion back — not just for cooking but for life

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This is the story of a chef who’s love for cooking and food defined him — until he lost the passion and left the kitchen behind forever, or so he thought.

Back to the beginning

I began my cooking journey in 2001, and I loved everything about it. I’m not exactly sure why I decided cooking was the career for me, but it probably had something to do with the fact I thought chefs were pretty cool. Jamie Oliver was the new kid on the block, and whatever you might think of him, at that time he did make cooking and being a chef relatively cool — well to me anyway. I also worked at a restaurant as a waiter and even though the chefs were mainly pricks to me something about it intrigued me, and I thought I’d like to give it a go. …


And why it’s so important to speak out.

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Photo by Nik Shuliahin on Unsplash

Living with depression

Depression is one of those things you’re sure won’t affect you — until it does. For me it just kind of crept up on me. My loved ones and friends noticed a difference in me, long before I did. As usual, I had my head buried deep in the sand. But things got worse and it started to affect my relationship with my wife and son. It was clear that I had to make some changes.

Dreaded antidepressants…

When my wife first mentioned antidepressants to me, I refused. Unfortunately, I was too proud and too uneducated to think they could help me. And to be honest I thought she was over exaggerating the situation. I didn’t need to go on antidepressants. …


And how to write one

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Photo by rawpixel on Unsplash

What is a social media strategy?

A social media strategy is a plan of how you will run your accounts. Without a strategy, your social media output will be listless. Creating your strategy will also help you fine-tune your objectives and act as a guide to follow. Due to the fact that business, as well as the world of social media, is ever changing you should create a new strategy every quarter. You can use the previous strategy as a base to work off, as not everything will need changing.

First steps

First off, before you can create a strategy you need to know what you want the outcome to be. Do you want to promote a particular service, or to increase your social presence? Or both? …


With the help of my new 1957 Olympia SM2 typewriter.

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Photo by Suzy Hazelwood from Pexels

A challenge failed?

On the 31st of December, I set myself a challenge to write and post on Medium every day in January. And I’ve already hit a stumbling block. I failed to post something yesterday, and there is only one thing to blame for this… My new typewriter.

I’ve wanted a typewriter for as long as I can remember but never got round to buying one for various reasons. Before Christmas, I came across an online Etsy store called Tony’s Typewriters based in the Nederlands, quite by chance and after browsing voraciously, fell in love with a green 1957 Olympia SM2.

Why a typewriter?

First and foremost, all writers should have a typewriter, right? They are bloody cool. …


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Photo by Lauren Mancke on Unsplash

I am the worst of the worst in the mornings. No matter what time I go to bed, or wake up, I wake feeling horrendous. I put it down to not being a morning person but I realise that a big part of this is my unhealthy-ish lifesyle, and I’m sure stress plays a part too. As a result I crave a coffee the minute I wake up and then I don’t stop drinking the black nectar until my last cup in the evening before I go to bed. Nope, coffee doesn’t stop me sleeping — although perhaps it disrupts the quality of my sleep? Funny how I’ve never thought of that before until writing this. I have decided, as it’s January and a new year and all that, I need to improve the quality of my lifestyle, and hot lemon water is one of the perfect places to start. As we’eve already ascertained I drink way too much coffee. It even gets to the point towards the end of the day when I stop enjoying the taste of it anymore, it’s just something to do. Coffee is like a Groundhog Day drug. The first cup of the day is one of life’s great pleasures. It tastes sweet, soothing and delicious. You then spend the rest of the day chasing that memory and taste, but of course it’s illusive. …


Why I need to make changes in 2019

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Photo by George Pagan III on Unsplash

I’m not the person I want to be.

I’m not the husband, father, friend, I should be.

Things haven’t been right for a while. I’m struggling to find my way in the world, I am lost. When you have an innate passion for something — mine was cooking, you feel like life is on the easier side. At one point I was getting paid for something I adored. Then, everything changed. Whether it was the weariness of fifteen years behind the stoves, the burns, the heat, the exhaustion, the constant lambasting. Maybe it was the lure of an easier life. Nights at home instead of behind the stoves. Whatever the reason, my passion dwindled. …


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Photo by Crazy nana on Unsplash

Happy New Year! I hope you have a fantastic 2019.

Write, Write, Write — Everyday

I’ve decided to conduct an experiment. I will be (attempting) to write and post every day in January. Why? Well, a few reasons. First, I feel that to take my writing to the next level I need to write more, a lot more. At the moment I’m letting life get in the way. I have definitely upped my game in the last month or so, publishing a few articles on Medium within that time, but I need to do more. The biggest reason I have let my writing go by the wayside is my depression, although ironically it has been writing that has been my medicine, along with the actual antidepressants of course. Depression has zapped my focus, my energy, my drive and my creativity. …


Ten Articles that I have recently found helpful.

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Photo by rawpixel.com from Pexels

“If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot.” — Stephen King

Medium is a wondrous place. It gives us a platform to get our words out there but also gives us the opportunity to read fantastic articles. It’s a one-stop shop for improving our writing. And that doesn’t include the countless examples of ‘How to Improve Your Writing’ articles that are out there.

I wanted to share some of the articles I have enjoyed and clapped for recently.

Here, August Birch talks about why he writes the end of his novels first, so he has a clear direction of where his story is going. …

About

David Harford

Crazy passionate chef — my passion for food and cooking defines me. You’ll often see me with a cup of coffee or my favourite knife in hand.

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