Learn to cook! It's not just for housewives from the 1950s!

Cooking provides me with a great outlet for creativity and the best part is that you get to eat your work! I'm no chef, but I am fairly good at cooking several things, and always like to learn new recipes. I prefer sautéing and other stove-top related techniques, I feel like these are the most involved cooking processes and also the most fun. I try not to make things with an excess of ingredients, or obscure ingredients, as this takes away from my usual goal of a meal being quick and easy. If I do cook something more involved, I usually save it for a Saturday or Sunday so that time is less of an issue. On weeknights I frequently just throw things together with whatever ingredients I have lying around.

I started cooking when I was around 11 years old, or whenever we started getting the Food Network on cable (back in the day, the Food Network actually showed instructional cooking shows). Good Eats with Alton Brown is probably my favorite cooking show, and most of what I know about cooking techniques was learned from watching it. That being said, many of Alton's recipes involve either painfully long prep/cooking times, obscure ingredients, or an excessive amount of clean-up afterwards. For this reason I don't cook many of his recipes in my normal day-to-day routine, but I still really like his show and encourage you to watch reruns of it (some episodes are on Netflix now!). I've also watched Sam the Cooking Guy from time to time (he is more in the "quick and easy" camp) and Gordon Ramsay has alot of good videos on Youtube (believe it or not he isn't always yelling). I even have a Rachel Ray cookbook from which I have made several recipes, with mixed results. And of course, Paula Deen is a great source for anything and everything Southern, just make sure your cholesterol and blood pressure are in check before cooking her stuff...

Now you may be thinking "man, cooking is just so hard and time consuming and the stuff I make is never as good as the stuff I get in restaurants." Well, cooking may just be hard because you haven't done it enough to be very comfortable with it, and while it can be time consuming, it can also be quite quick, perhaps even quicker than going through the process of:
a) deciding on a restaurant (this time can vary from a few seconds to tens of minutes if you have a significant other)
b) getting to said restaurant
c) getting a table at said restaurant
d) waiting for food at said restaurant
e) eating food at said restaurant
f) driving back home from said restaurant

There are several meals that the time from me walking in the door of my home and sitting on my couch with a full belly is around an hour or even less, so don't let the "convenience" of eating out fool you, with the right prep a home-cooked meal can save you time and oodles of money.

Now, at first the meals you make may not be as good as those you get in restaurants, but with some practice and fine tuning you can make culinary masterpieces in your very own home! Also keep in mind that restaurants like to dump tons of salt and fat into their food to make it taste better, so even if your meal isn't quite as good as the one you had in a restaurant, it will almost certainly be better for you, and that is good too. It will also cost you significantly less money.


2 thoughts on “Cooking

  1. Pingback: A Nerd's Guide to a Workout Routine Part III: Keep it Going

  2. Pingback: Reflections On a Year of Powerlifting

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