I have recently developed a desire to cook well and to cook often. This took me by surprise actually because I have been known to eat tortilla chips with cold shredded cheddar cheese rather than take the extra steps of throwing it all into the microwave or oven to melt the cheese for nachos. Sad, I know. I’m not proud of it, however, it emphasizes that this newly awakened desire to cook was pretty unexpected for me.
For the past several years, Kevin has been in charge of most of the cooking. I would pick out what I wanted him to make and then he would make it and as he is quite a good cook it was a win win.
But now I feel this strange desire awakening in me that I would like to start creating meals and food and getting good at it. I blame Pinterest, partially. All of those yummy looking foods right there with easy to get to recipes! YAY! But all of that wouldn’t have done me a lick of good if I hadn’t spent the past 10 years unlearning my picky eating habits because most of the foods that now make my mouth water would have been completely unappetizing to me years ago. For most of my life I happily ate hamburgers, chicken fingers, French fries, tacos, pizza, pasta and soda. And that was pretty much it.
While I have nothing against those foods in moderation the fact that those foods were the base and bulk of my food pyramid is cringe worthy. In another post a couple years ago I wrote about my strategy of introducing a few new foods (2-5) each year so that now I can eat most foods. Some of the foods I introduced myself to were simple like having ketchup and mustard on my hamburgers (for years I ate only meat, bun, lettuce…the end…that is all…done) but I’ve recently discovered the joy of condiments (although mayo still gives me the heebie jeebies and I have not yet graduated to pickle lovin’). Some of them were more daring like fish that isn’t deep fried (hello, cedar plank grilled salmon!) or Thai curry dishes (my mouth just started to water). All of these changes have caused me to become a fairly well rounded eater and piqued my interest in learning to cook the dishes I like.
In fact, Kevin and I have almost stopped eating out altogether in favor of cooking at home. I love the process of being in the kitchen with him, joking together and creating our meal. I also really love being in control of what goes into my food and the quality of ingredients. The more I learn about the food industry in America the more picky I am becoming about where and what I eat.
This has lead on my recent decision to jump on the meal planning wagon. We’ve tried it in the past but it never worked for whatever reason (I’m guessing the fact that I hated to cook and still didn’t like many foods). Our grocery shopping process was pretty haphazard and lead to some interesting and unsatisfying meals or running out to grab something to eat because by the time we realized we were hungry we would discover we wouldn’t have everything needed to make a meal and it was too late to go buy ingredients because we were hangry (the state of irrational anger/irritation brought about by hunger).
This time feels like it will work though. Partially because I’ve spent about 4 hours planning out meals for the next two weeks and am SUPER excited to eat everything and partially because I feel like I have a better handle on what we like and when we like to eat it.
I’m going to share my progress and the recipes that we use. I’m looking forward to documenting the processes with you and hope that you’ll share some of your favorite recipes with me!