Thursday, April 19, 2012

Baking Bits: What?! You Cook?

When the Hubster and I got married almost 9 years ago, I did not cook. At least not much!! In fact, here are the 5 things I could make:
1. Chicken & Rice (all from cans & boxes)
2. Mexican Casserole (all from cans)
3. Ramen Noodle soup (anyone who went to college knows this recipe!)
4. Scrambled Eggs (sometimes I didn't even burn them!)
5. Hamburger Helpers (yep, you guessed it...another box)

So there ya have it! Proof that the Hubster did not marry me for my cooking skills! HA! In fact, early on in our marriage, he was most often the cook. I hardly boiled water!! TRUTH!!

It wasn't so much that I couldn't cook, but that I was scared to death - literally -  about cooking. Now, I could follow a recipe quite easily and more often than not it turned out edible. However, when it came to tossing spices and things in to punch up the recipe - I was done! I couldn't do it!!

Maybe you're the same way. Maybe you just think you don't have the time. Or maybe you've just never tried. I'd like to give you some tips on How You Too Can Cook! Because, seriously...if I can do it, you can too! Trust me!

True Story: I called my best friend 2 years ago (around the time I actually started to cook at home) and was talking to her after I had put dinner in the oven. I mentioned something about making dinner and she kinda' giggled. NO really...she did!  I said, "What?! I can cook!" She said something like, I'm sure you can I've just never seen you do it! Oh...she knows me so well. Then, she asked what we were having. I told her BBQ Chicken, mashed potatoes from scratch and green beans. I seriously thought the phone went DEAD!! "Did you touch the chicken?" Oh man does she know me or what?! "YES!!!! Can you believe it?" I can NOT stand the texture of raw meat. It literally makes me cringe. Thus the reason my bestie was in shock!

Now, I still don't like to touch raw meat - ICK! - but now I just use gloves. Sereiously, I do! I've tried and tried to get over it, but I just can't. So for now the gloves help. LOL

So, here ya own tips on what help me learn to cook.

How You Too Can Cook...From Scratch!
1. First, do a LOT of reading! I've done so much reading on cooking and cooking substitutions, etc. it would probably drive a person insane! Don't be afraid to use the internet!
2. Start by stocking up on kitchen essentials. You can't cook from scratch if you don't have common ingredients on hand. Flour, sugar, baking goods and a variety of spices are a great place to start.
3. Gather your recipes. You can family, friends, search the internet, Pinterest (love getting recipes on there), online groups and so much more!!!
4. Make your first recipe as directed. Don't change a thing. Sometimes the recipes I found were great the way they were. They had already been tweaked. Don't get ahead of yourself.
5. Once you've tried the original recipe, then you can begin to play around with the spices, ratios, etc. 

The first recipe I really made my own was this Homemade Pizza Sauce. The first few times I made it I followed the recipe exactly. Then, I realized that I could add a little more basil & oregano or some Italian Seasonings and even some parsley to punch it up just a bit. The Hubster was impressed. So much so that now he won't make the sauce if I'm home!! Yes, he helps out on Homemade Pizza night - aren't I lucky?! Seriously, I am!! The Hubster is willing to step in and help in the kitchen when needed!

Right now I'm going through this process again as we're transitioning to Whole Foods eating and going off Soy and gluten (mostly). I have various reasons for doing this, which I'll discuss in a series coming in May!!

Hope that helps some of you or gives you the confidence to get started!! Trust me...if this no touchy raw meat, egg burning, Ramen noodle soup makin' girl can do it - SO CAN YOU!!!


What's coming: Next week I'll be sharing our favorite Homemade Bread recipe. 
In May I'll be doing a series on Wednesdays about going to Whole Food & Paleo eating!!
Hope you'll join me!


Melissa said...

I'm interested in finding out more about whole foods. Do you think it will cost you an arm and leg more? It seems like the healthier the food the more it costs!

Annette@InAllYouDo said...

That's what I've thought too! I'm still looking into all of it and researching. BUT...I've read where you can eat whole foods on a budget and shop their sales/fliers too, just like a regular grocery store. I've also read a TON that says whole foods fill you up quicker and last longer than processed foods, so once your body de-toxifies or is cleansed you eat less, so really its not that much more. That's what my series in May is going to hit on and talk about. I plan to compare all my whole food shopping with my previous grocery bills. But, for me its now as much of a necessity as it is for health. Blessings!