Cooking from scratch is scary, or at least I used to think so. I’ve often told the hubby that I married him because he can cook (he used to cook in restaurants.) I can bake. I’ve been baking since my early teens and my mom decided at that point I was the house baker (except for pumpkin and apple pie, those were her specialties.) People who have the ability to take a bunch of random ingredients, throw them together, adjust spices, and present a delicious meal, all from scratch, have always impressed me. But I’m finding out, it’s not that hard and if I can do it, so can you!
During college, I lived in a studio apartment that had a micro-kitchen. Seriously. The apartment had a walk-in closet that was 4 times bigger than the kitchen. The kitchen was smaller than the shower! I wasn’t much of a cook then and that tiny kitchen didn’t help. I lived off packaged flavored rice and Slim Fast. Not good. (Believe me, with all that rice, the Slim Fast didn’t help!)
After school, I got a full-time job and started house sitting on the side. Kept me rent free and I had real kitchens! My cooking skills slightly improved. I moved from living of rice and chalking “chocolate” drinks to living off roasted veggies. I didn’t mean to be a vegetarian, I was just too intimidated to cook meat.
Then I met the hubby. For one of our earlier dates, I cooked him the only from scratch meal I knew how, smoked salmon chowder. I rarely made it for myself, because I only new how to make a family-sized batch. He loved it (and still does!) When he cooked for me, he grilled steaks and had baked potatoes and sides AND he knew how to have it all done at the same time so nothing was cold when you ate it. I was just a bit intimidated.
Slowly over our now six years of marriage and now that I’m a stay at home wife, I’ve become more and more comfortable in the kitchen. The hubby has taught me so much and introduced me to the world of cooking shows. I ate it all up (pardon the pun…) I’ve become more and more comfortable searching for recipes and tweaking them to make them my own.
Cooking from scratch is scary, but it doesn’t have to be. Find a dish or meal you and your family love. Practice it. Sure, you might fail, but keep at it and you’ll get better. I’ve cooked my fair share of meals that turned out…. not good. Edible, but not good. (Guess what? The chef hubby has too!) It’s all part of discovering what you like, what foods are good together, and becoming more and more comfortable in your own kitchen, no matter what size it is.
I still bug my mom for recipes sometimes or call her up for a quick refresher course on pie crusts. I now enjoy searching Pinterest for tasty recipes and new ideas for dinner. And with becoming more comfortable in the kitchen, I’ve become more comfortable branching out from just baking and cooking. Canning homemade jams, veggies from the garden, and even meat, fermenting sauerkraut, brewing kombucha, and dehydrating snacks are all part of my kitchen know-how now, and I enjoy it!
Cooking from scratch is scary, but it doesn’t have to be
I’ve got a growing collection of cookbooks now and add to them all the time. The latest cooking book I’ve read isn’t so much a cookbook, although there are a few recipes, but an encouraging resource book for those who think cooking from scratch is scary. Anjanette Barr recently came out with Dinner at Home: Advice and Encouragement for the Untrained Home Cook. She shares stories, ideas, helpful tips, and so much more, which all helps to put the new cook on the right track. There are even printable charts in the back of the book! The whole book is awesome!
If I can cook – you can cook. I’ve been feeding my family relatively healthy meals made at home and mostly from scratch for almost a decade, but the learning curve was steep!If you’re overwhelmed by feelings of inadequacy in the kitchen, I want to hold your hand while you take the next step toward better providing for your family.
Dinner at Home: Advice and Encouragement for the Untrained Home Cook is both an encouraging resource and the hilarious account of all of the mistakes I’ve made and adventures I’ve had while learning to cook.
Inside, you’ll find advice and instruction on these topics and more: