Over the past couple of years, I have made fun of my very limited culinary talents by writing posts about my halfhearted attempts to cook. Although I did put forth effort into these endeavors, most of the “dishes” I made were either of the no-bake variety or incredibly unhealthy (most of the time both).
In a genuine effort to help out more around the house, and to give my wife a break during the upcoming final weeks of her pregnancy, I have sought the incredible teaching skills and patience of Sidney. Over the past couple of weeks, she has given me a Cooking 101 crash course.
It started off on a very remedial basis. Sidney taught me the best way to boil water. She also educated me on the various kitchen appliances we have at our disposal. After those first couple of lessons, I could confidently prepare buttered noodles, one of my favorite meals.
This week we have graduated to more advanced techniques. We cooked Hamburger Helper on Monday night and then we made tacos last evening. Being able to properly cook ground beef is imperative because it opens up the possibilities for so many different meals. Sidney showed me best practices for thawing, cooking, draining, and serving the meat. It was very helpful. Along the way, I also learned about mixes and seasonings, additional skills that provide options for countless dishes.
During our kitchen sessions I literally keep notes with a pen and paper pad. I know Sidney would probably rather do other things than teach me basic cooking skills but she makes light of it, saying she “feels like Trisha Yearwood” as she explains each step she takes while making a dish.
Over these several sessions in the kitchen, I have learned that cooking is a bit more complex than what I might have thought. It takes patience, attention to detail, and discipline. Making a mistake can lead to sickness, disappointment, and/or a waste of food. There are definitely risks when cooking.
But the risks seem to usually pay off. The past two nights, Sidney has given me a big high five after we prepared our meals. Being more aware of the labor that goes into a dish, the food does seem to taste a little better.
I have a looooooooooong way to go. But I am trying to learn and I have the best teacher there is. My goal is to one day make a delicious and healthy meal for my wife and our future daughter. Don’t Blink.