Tag Archives: cooking

Men and the Kitchen

This week I have been staying with my boyfriend, Jay, up in Oklahoma. Since I graduated, we have been trying the long distance thing. It hasn’t exactly been easy, but I think we will come out of it OK. Anyway, staying with him has been a bit of an adventure. In typical guy fashion, he has barely any kitchen supplies and what he does have, mostly go toward making some sort of meat (aka George Foreman Grill, meat tenderizer, the oddest wok I have ever seen). He does not even have a cookie sheet! Contrary to popular belief, (i.e. my boyfriend) just because something is called a cookie sheet, does not mean that is its only use.

But I am not one to give up on baking very easily. So in order to cook something that requires an oven, I have resorted to making a  pan out of foil. Now this technique does work, but it requires four hands to get it into the oven without everything ending up on the floor. On the plus side though, foil doesn’t really get hot in the oven and you can pick it up without using an oven mitt. While foil is a good temporary solution, it would get kind of expensive to do this every single time. Luckily, because of my phenomenal persuasive powers, I convinced him to buy a cookie sheet.  I used it last night to roast some asparagus; it was amazing.

Now I just need to work on getting him a better cutting board, more knives and real cups. I just remembered that Jay reads my blog sometimes…I hope he doesn’t get mad about this…then again maybe he will take my advice.

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Not so Simple

Today, as I was drinking coffee in my kitchen, talking to my mom and our friend Yolanda, she said something that really made me think. She said that even if all you are eating is a piece of bread and a coffee, it can be the most delicious thing in the world if you are with the right company.

After thinking about it, I find that I have to agree with her. Food just tastes better when you are with other people who are enjoying it with you. I love to bake and cook, but I often don’t feel like my job is done until I have shared my cooking accomplishment with another person. It’s almost like it didn’t happen if no one else was around to eat it. I get a small thrill when I see a friend bite into a cookie that I spent my time on. I am excited when I see a slow smile spread across their face or hear a delighted, “This is so good.”

Food has a way of connecting people that is like no other. Growing up, the kitchen was the place that we would all gather, each of us doing our part to make a great meal. In a world where work and projects are never ending, a good meal is something you can start and finish all in one day, and receive immediate benefits.

Food should never be used as something to simply fill an empty belly, it should be an experience. Each meal should be enjoyed and talked about. Now I know that we don’t always have time to make an elaborate meal, but even simple foods can complex. Like Yolanda said, even a simple piece of bread has the potential to be the best thing you have ever tasted.

Time Saving Discovery

I recently made a food discovery of monumental proportions, the food processor. I received a food processor for Christmas this year and I have proceeded to use it in all of my subsequent cooking endeavors. And I mean all of them.

Bread? Yep.

Truffles? You bet.

Cookies? No brainer.

Croissants? Don’t be crazy, that would ruin puff pastry!

But in all seriousness, a food processor is a great way to cut down on time and mess. That is a big deal for someone like me, as making messes is like second nature. Usually when I bake, I get so into it that when I finally look up there is flour everywhere! It even somehow finds a way to make my black lab look like he’s going gray! (That is a frightening thought!)

A food processor keeps me from having a kitchen tornado. That is, of course, as long as I remember to put the lid on…

Just the other day, it only took me five minutes to make the filling for some Oreo    Truffles. Which are absolutely delicious by the way, but also absolutely fattening. But what are you going to do? All the best things are.

Anyway, next time you are short on time and want to still make something amazing, try using a food processor to speed up a few steps.

Tip: A food processor is a great way to mix hard butter and flour together when making a pastry.