I don’t consider myself to be much of a cook. When I was a kid, I had an Easy-Bake oven, and I earned a cooking badge in Girl Scouts. That’s the extent of my training and expertise. I can’t say that I really like to cook; it’s not something I’d choose to do for fun or relaxation. It takes time, and it messes up the kitchen, and most of the year here it’s just too hot to spend any time sweating in the kitchen. For a long time I got by with frozen meals, canned soup, and the occasional crock-pot venture, and ate cereal or popcorn for dinner. It’s pretty typical for single working people.
However, in the quest to make my diet better for me, my budget, and the planet, I’ve been going to the farmers’ market and trying to make things from scratch more, rather than get pre-made things with a lot of weird chemical ingredients. It is time-consuming, and I do get hot, but so far it hasn’t been bad. Especially baking – it just takes a few minutes to mix up a recipe, then I can get out of the kitchen while it’s in the oven. My carrot-pineapple bread that I made on Saturday turned out awesomely. It’s delicious. I froze one loaf and I’m eating the other (slice by slice) for breakfast, toasted. Yum. Ralph begs for a bite, but he only gets to lick my fingers. (Ralph needs to lose a few pounds too, and people food won’t help him achieve that goal.)
The Internet is a wonderful thing for many reasons – not the least of which is the abundance of recipes. I don’t like a lot of ingredients or complication, and I can almost always find a really simple recipe for whatever it is that I’d like to make. I found the recipe for carrot pineapple bread by Googling “carrot bread,” and it led me to Cooks.com. There are 11 ingredients, of which I already had 10 (had to get pineapple), and there are exactly four sentences of instructions. The recipe for fried rice that I used came from About.com. It has seven ingredients (I added an eighth, carrots) and very simple instructions. Simple ingredients and instructions – that’s my kind of recipe.
I have leftover pineapple, and two cups of zucchini in the freezer, so pineapple zucchini bread is next.
I may turn out to be a fairly decent cook eventually. 🙂