Sunday, October 3, 2010

Cooking woes? Play with your food!

I love food….who doesn’t?! I detest cooking although I prepare full meals several nights a week. I honestly cringe when my husband calls and asks the same question everyday… “What’s for supper?” Yes, he calls it “supper” being that he is a southern man and if you know anything about the south, southern men love to eat!

I am sure by now that you know I am a California native so trying to prepare the real southern dinners can be a challenge for me. I’ll never be able to top or even compare my cooking to the southern women here in Mississippi. Have you ever enjoyed a southern meal? I’m telling you, these ladies (and gentlemen) can cook! It’s a wonder that I haven’t gained a lot of weight since moving here. This might be a reason I’m having issues with weight loss. At least I have maintained my weight for the most part. My weight has always fluctuated.

You might be asking why I don’t like to cook and this is an easy question to answer. Cooking on a budget can be challenging and can be dull if you don’t know too many recipes. The sounds of “Ohhh man, not that again!” makes my stomach churn. What I do take pleasure in is experimenting with food! I have also become devoted to my cookbooks in recent months. I actually take great pride in creating new and exciting dishes. I may not enjoy cooking but, I do love the end results! Well, sometimes I do. There are times when I’d rather feed my dishes to the dogs instead of my family and there are times that I wouldn’t even dream of serving the dish to my dogs either!

My failures don’t discourage me, I’ve actually made several scrumptious meals from both experimenting and following recipes. If anything, my failures encourage me to strive harder in achieving tastier meals for my family on a budget.

Have you ever wondered what to do with the odds and ends in your pantry, fridge or freezer? I have! The magnificent factor about this is that you can experiment with your food and hopefully create a delectable dish your family will love. I’ve learned to stock my pantry with various seasonings, sauces, oils, marinades, mixes, etc. to give a little “oomph” to a dish. The right seasonings can seriously upgrade a boring meal into a “mom, this is really good. Can I have seconds?” meal. Or the infamous “Honey, this is really, really good!” from your husband who is as picky about food as he is with just about anything and let me add, he is quite the picky man!

I love my family and do what I can to please and make them happy. They say that one way into a mans heart is food, lol. I cannot use this saying as I use to cook frozen prepackaged meals frequently in the past. Very unhealthy, expensive and most of the time unappealing. Why did I cook this way? I suppose it was laziness on my part. I did cook great meals from time to time but, the other way of cooking consumed us at dinner time. Not anymore! I have been learning to cook more from scratch by using my cookbooks and experimenting. One thing I haven’t been able to master yet is biscuits. Yes, I admit it…I cannot make biscuits from scratch to save my life (or money!). So, unfortunately I stock up on canned biscuits which comes no where close to what a delicate, fluffy, homemade biscuit tastes or even resembles in looks. My husband and I have both tried and failed to make homemade biscuits several times. If anyone has a secret to this, please feel free to share!

Do you own an iphone? You can visit Betty Crocker to download a free cookbook app. The app is perfect if you don’t have any cookbooks sitting around. There are over 5,000 recipes within this application and you can save them in your favorites folder.

I’m beginning to enjoy cooking a smidgen more with each successful meal and I’m sure my family is a bit more thrilled with the variety, lol. I suppose that the point of this blog post other than just to ramble would be that you can turn your dull and unexciting meals into something your family will enjoy even if you live on a tight budget. Just pick up a cookbook or two, stock up on spices, sauces, marinades, etc. and enjoy your newfound way of cooking!



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