In which I try to cook again

While planning my goals for this year, I realised that they were all around continuing activities I already did. (I guess that’s the benefit of the “do something new each month!” thing I had two years ago. I got all the things I wanted to try out of my system.)

One goal is to be more comfortable with cooking. And I mean cooking properly.

I’ve always cooked for survival. I can boil pasta, make some kind of sauce and add veggies I have on hand. I can cook rice on a stove, fry an egg, fry random bits of meat, and make pancakes. Is my food edible? Yes. Is it delicious? Well, sometimes I get lucky. Would I serve it to anyone else? Umm, no.

I accepted eating mediocre food. When I’d arrive home, tired from work, the last thing I wanted to do was cook a culinary feast that would be gone in 5 minutes (and would require plenty of cleaning up afterwards). The flip side was that every time I ate out, I was really grateful at how delicious everything tasted. Haha.

Whenever I would share photos of tasty things we were eating at home, people would ask me, “Wow! Did you cook that?” to which I would reply: “I set the table.” Or maybe, “I made the iced tea.” Perhaps the vague, “I helped!”

After seeing S whip up deliciousness in the kitchen, I realised cooking was a skill I wanted to learn. I know that the more I do it, the better and faster I’ll be at making meals. So, this year, I resolved to cook at least one new recipe, properly, a month. (I say “properly” because even when I’d follow recipes, I’d take shortcuts. For example, I’d throw everything into a pot*, order and cooking times be damned. All the ingredients ended up there eventually, I reasoned.)

Last month, I ended up cooking this lamb kofte with salad from Jamie Oliver’s 15 minute meals book. I’ve had the book for years. This is the first time I’ve made anything from it. Haha. (It took me way more than 15 minutes.)

I definitely need to up my food presentation skills. But hey, the meal wasn’t half bad! Yay me! I’ve already committed to making brunch this weekend. And I’m going to make it a proper brunch to rival the hipster brunches that seem to be the rage right now.

I’m also going to try to bake healthier goods – but that’s another story for another time. 😛

* I found this yummy vegan one pot creamy garlic pasta recipe. I’ve already made it twice. I’m not vegan. I’m just lazy, and the recipe required ingredients I already had on hand.

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