Friday, March 25, 2011

It's true - I be a cooker

Well at least that is what my wife tells me. I guess one of us should be.

No, I am not the professional chef that a friend is.  I think if I had to do it for a living I probably would lose the enjoyment along the way.

Actually, I have enjoyed cooking as far back as I can remember actually. When I was in kindergarten or first grade we made oatmeal raisin cookies. I remember wanting to do it at home as well, so my mother and I made oatmeal raisin cookies.

My mom was a good cook, and we always ate well when my brother, sister and I were growing up. My dad would cook occasionally, and he was ... well let's just say he was inventive

When I was a Boy Scout, my patrol always ate well. While the other patrols were eating hot dogs or minute steaks, I remember making spare ribs (prepared and marinated before we went camping) and Rice-a-Roni™ and eating very well.

If you like to eat, it helps to know how to cook.

When we were in college, my wife invited me to stay with her one weekend. I soon found out why. She had invited some friends over and wanted me to cook my chicken crépes dish. Did I mention that this was all made from scratch and took a full day to make?

Did I also mention that my wife is not a cooker? Have I told you that when my kids were young and she attempted on occasion to cook something, my kids knew that their job was to stand under the smoke detector and fan the area around it? (It usually still went off.) After the oven once literally exploded in her face - a trip to the emergency room showed her to be okay, though lacking eyebrows for a while - she gave up on cooking for the good of all.

My favorite cooking tools are my woks. I bought my first one over 20 years ago, and it is still very much used. I also have 2 others which more or less have replaced them since my kids grew up and no longer live at home. Yes, they are smaller. I have a great Asian market not far, so my Chinese cooking has improved quite a bit over the years since I have access to the proper ingredients. (Though not everything I do in the wok is Asian. They are very versatile tools!)

Of course, in the summer most of my cooking is done on the grill in the backyard. Hamburgers, hot dogs, steaks, ribs of course, but also occasionally a lobster tail on the grill can make for a nice backyard meal.

Last night was one of those nights where I had no idea what to make, so I wound up being creative. In less than a half hour, including all the prep, I came up with Garlic Chicken over Pasta Alfredo. (I actually wanted linguine, but all I had in the house was cappellini, so it had to do.) The "hardest" and most time consuming part of this whole process was chopping the garlic. (Okay, I will admit that I used a bottled (light) Alfredo sauce rather than making my own, but this had to be a quick meal, remember?) Notice the really fancy dinnerware? Paper and plastic all the way! I may like to cook, but who likes to do the dishes? Certainly not me. Paper plates, plasticware and disposable cups are the way to go when it's just me and my wife.

Well, one of us has to know how to cook, right?

1 comment:

  1. oh dear, my boys always know when i'm in the kitchen cause quite often the smoke detector will go off. Perhaps if I wasn't trying to do so many things at once it would mean that we don't have quite so much umm charcoal but hey, a bit of charcoal is good for the body isn't it? ;)