Friday, October 21, 2011

I want to be a better cook!

I find myself cooking a lot lately...which is largely a function of not being nearly as busy as I have been in times past. Most days I can pretty easily get back from school by 4:30, which gives me time to myself before I have to get the girls at school. If Munchkin has a soccer game, I try and go to that, and otherwise I just enjoy the peace and quiet.

So...cooking. I really like to cook. And I am not bad at it. I have a pretty good idea of how long stuff takes, what the best way is to cook it, and some sort of basic seasoning combinations that work. But, frankly, I am kind of limited. I may have a pretty good grasp on those skills that I have, but the skills are at a pretty basic level.

I guess I am not quite sure where to go from here. I don't think I want to go as far as to take a cooking class (although I suppose I could) just because I don't know how long I will have the free time to do it, and don't ever want to feel like it is a chore to go. I am not great with cook books, although I own some and tend to learn things when I use them...I am just not organzied to pick something, then shop for it, then cook it. I tend to shop, then cook things that match what I have in the kitchen. I am totally sick of the "food celebrity" culture (except I love Top Chef:-)), so I can't really watch the Food Network, either.

Side note...anyone seen the South Park episode about that? The shake weight portion was absolutely hilarious, but I loved the Food Network part, too...

Yea, I guess that part of this are my own hang-ups...I sort of seem unwilling to do the obvious, now that I go back and read that. But still, I will take any suggestions that anyone has...

6 comments:

Kathleen said...

Food blogs, food blogs, food blogs! Check out this list: http://haygirlhay.tumblr.com/post/3311859685/the-great-food-blog-adventure

Nilsa @ SoMi Speaks said...

I want to say there is a website where you put in as few or as many ingredients as you want to use and it scours recipes to give you ideas. Of course, I can't remember the name of the website (some help I am). Maybe that would be the perfect next step for you to try new things without having to plan for them before shopping!

Ally said...

When I use to cook more I made it my goal to cook one new thing each week and that kept me adding to the list of things I was good at making--maybe you could start small like that. Right now I find Pinterest to be a good place of cooking inspiration.

MrsV said...

I wish I was a better cook as well! I've found a couple food blogs I now follow with hopes they will inspire me to try something new haha so far no luck.

Have a good weekend!

Irene said...

I love cooking and baking and have a few favourite meals/Cakes/Muffins/Desserts I love and make again and again. I found most of them in cookbooks. I think if you decide what kind of food you really like (e.g. pasta) and try out a few from your cookbooks (including shopping for them and sticking to the recipes) you will soon find a few favourites and after a few tries you will have memorized them and can vary them/substitute ingredients when you can't shop.

And basic cooking skills can be "upgraded" by adding some fresh herbs or fancy ingredients or just by serving the meal in a nice setting. Pizza tastes much better if homemade and can be fancy when served with fresh parmesan cheese and some wine on nice plates with some candlelight :)

If you need some "proven-to-be-good recipes let me know...

Kari said...

I have issues with cookbooks -- but I do have one that I use frequently -- it is a 4H cookbook that has everything you could ever want to make in it. Most of the recipes are modifiable. I have often used the recipe finders online (superfoods, kraft foods, allrecipes, etc) to find recipes based on what I have in the house. Don't be afraid to experiment..with baking if you keep your wet to dry ratio the same, you can make a lot of substitutions. With cooking you can make tonnes of substitutions and additions. One thing you might want to do is a meal plan. I find that saves a lot of time and makes cooking more fun (because I am not rushing and I have all the ingredients).