Cooking at home: an anecdotal (and possibly unhelpful) guide

If you work for a hundred hours per week, you live in a place where fresh ingredients are prohibitively expensive or you are physically unable to use cooking utensil, then I cannot persuade you to cook at home.

If you don’t experience any of those, let’s get started.

I don’t know why. But, it seems some of you are under the impression that all recipes take hours of preparation and cooking. If you are talking about pies, lasagna, gulai or briyani, then they are obviously laborious. But, stir fries also exist.

They definitely do not have to be Asian; I say that as an Asian. All you need is seasoning (which can be either chopped fresh spices, spice powder or even bouillon cubes), a small amount of cooking fat or oil and the two or more main ingredients.

My personal favourite: minced beef and spinach stir fried with small amount of margarine, chopped garlic, chopped shallots, chopped chillies, salt and pepper; so simple yet so tasty (for me) and so filling.

Oh, and fried rice and noodles technically count as stir fries. Technically.

Now, it is not to say stir fries are effortless. It can be exhausting to wash and chop the ingredients, cook them and wash the utensils. But, the more you do them, the easier they get; even the more elaborate recipes will get easier eventually.

Cooking also teaches me to be more time-efficient. If I know I would have limited time to cook my lunch and dinner, I would prepare some or all of my ingredients hours prior. The cooking process would not be as hectic.

Now, what if the grocery stores force you to buy ingredients in bulk, but you still want to cook? I have two suggestions: 1. you create one dish in a bulk and consume it over a few meals; 2. you use the ingredients for different dishes.

Of course, if you are not into eating leftovers or you are easily bored by the same ingredients, the suggestions won’t do. But, even if you don’t have to buy in bulks, you still need to learn appreciating leftovers and not being bored by the back-to-back use of the same ingredients; I find it tasteless to waste food because of one’s pickiness.

Oh, and you need to learn how to cook, anyway. It is one of the most basic human survival skills. It doesn’t feel important because we have easy access to takeouts and instant foods. Take them away and we will sing a different tune.

Lastly, there is one obvious aspect homemade cooking which should be talked about more: the “customisation”.

If you cook, you are in charge. Not only you decide the amount of ingredients, you also decide whether to use the alternatives or even exclude them altogether.

You are in charge of how healthy your foods are and how they taste like. Personally, as much as I enjoy takeouts, some of them can definitely be less salty and greasy and contain more fresh vegetables.

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Author: The Stammering Dunce

I write blogs. I love to act smarter than I really am and I pretend that my opinions are of any significance. Support me on Patreon: https://www.patreon.com/user?u=9674796

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