Do you like to cook? Generally, I don’t.
My hubby enjoys cooking breakfast (and chocolate cake). Sausage, omelets, pancakes, French toast, eggs, toast, oatmeal, he’s good with all of it.
I’m too cranky in the morning to cook, it takes me awhile to get used to being awake again, I guess. It’s not like I have to wake up early to a blaring alarm clock, either. Mostly, I wake up whenever I want to – anytime between 6 to 8:30 am, but usually around 7’ish, I’d say.
I’m very skeptical when I read in some book that the hero pops up in the morning wide awake and ready to take on bad guys.
Mornings, I AM the bad guy.
One morning, Christmas morning, I cooked a marvelous egg/hashbrown dish. I thought it was marvelous. My family hated it, HATED IT! Turns out they don’t like onion, except in extreme moderation.
I didn’t realize just how similar (as in identical) sliced onions and hashbrowns can look. All the kids saw was onion, onion everywhere in every possible bite. So that was a go-down-in-flames-and-talk-about-it-forever cooking fiasco.
Nowadays, when a recipe calls for onion, I make sure the slices are big so they can be picked out – and that they don’t look like another ingredient in the dish. >sigh<
Back to cooking…
Every night around dinnertime, I’m astonished to find I have to cook dinner again. Really? Again? How does that happen?
When I wasn’t working fulltime, it was easier to think of and plan for meals, and you could even almost say I enjoyed cooking back then, at least a little bit. Now? It’s mostly a chore I forget about every day. EVERY day, every single stinkin’ day, I’ll look at the clock and see that its 6pm and I have no idea what’s for dinner. Poop…no that’s not what’s for dinner, that’s what I’m thinking.
I used to have a bookshelf full of cookbooks. I had this idea that one day I’d start channeling Martha Stewart and Julia Child and be able to read a recipe.
I am very bad with recipes. I skip steps and forget ingredients. My daughter-in-law, Andrea, reminds me to read the recipe all the way through before beginning and that does help, but this problem is why I can’t code. Or sew. Or do proofs for algebra. Or tell jokes, for that matter.
The last time we moved, I tossed all the cookbooks except for my inherited Joy of Cooking, 5 Ingredient Cookbook and Cooking with Grits, which my sis-in-law gave me – I haven’t used it yet, but I will, I’m sure, cuz I love grits! And there’s another cookbook in there that has a few recipes I’ve used but I can’t remember its name off the top of my head, Oh, I remember, its Betty Crocker. Fun fact: Betty Crocker has changed the image of their ‘Betty’ 8 times over the years, the most recent is a computer-generated composite of 75 women. Betty Crocker portraits
Yeah, I gave away all those cookbooks – various church-lady cookbooks, Southern Cooking (which is wonderful), crockpot cooking, desserts, cooking with Campell’s soup, Cocktail recipes – about 20 of them, I guess.
If I need a recipe now, I’ll go online to find it. Allrecipes.com, Pillsbury, Betty Crocker, Food Network, etc.
I also use recipes from Pinterest. I have a secret board named ‘food’ and I’ll pin all the food ideas that I might actually try – simplicity is the prerequisite for me to even consider the recipe.
I baked a 2-ingredient cookie the other day for Superbowl Sunday. Mashed bananas and oatmeal plus cinnamon or choco-chips, nuts, whatever. Supposed to be super-healthy and low-cal, right? They were HORRIBLE. My sis and I each took a bite and spit it out, that’s how bad. Tossed the rest of them right into the trash.
How can these 3 ingredients combine to make something foul?
I’m going to make a cheesy Mexican enchilada dish tonight, which is to say I’ll make my version of that.
I’m really best at augmenting rather than cooking from scratch. Cooking from scratch has too many opportunities for error. Each step, every ingredient, every manipulation of those ingredients – whip until peaks keep their shape, cook on high until just before boiling(!), stir constantly, knead twice and roll out to desired thinness(!) – is simply another oops in the making.
Last night I took ready-made Italian sausage-stuffed tortellini and added sautéed mushrooms, onions (I love them, OK?) and grape tomatoes with pesto sauce (which was also ready-made). It was delish!
I am good at meatloaf (except that I have to cook it twice as long as what the recipe says) and lasagna (except that I always double the recipe and always end up with exactly what I need for 1 pan – how can that be?).
Oh, and I make a pretty good sautéed corn dish, with cream and cream cheese and cayenne pepper. Throw fresh or frozen sweet corn in the skillet with the cream and cream cheese and cook on medium til you have a nice thick sauce (add more cream if it’s too thick), then add pepper and cayenne to taste. You can add other things, too, like tomato, celery, sweet peppers, garlic, whatever you want to add – maybe a little chopped up fresh spinach?
My hubby loves me and proves it by eating with enthusiasm and appreciation whatever concoction I place before him.
He loves me, but he picks out the onions ;-)