Finding the Inspiration for Cooking

Finding the Inspiration for Cooking

Many families are wrapped up in the speed and near-turmoil of modern life. With two careers, children's structured activities, commutes, professional associations, maintaining the home, etc., it can be difficult to find time to do any enjoyable cooking. Here are a few ideas to consider if this is an issue in your home.

One idea is to use cooking as a teaching activity. With a child, grandchild, niece or nephew, or close neighbor, you can make very tasty dishes, while imparting valuable skills as you go. Lessons that can be passed on include precise measuring, following a list of instructions, multi-tasking, the "art" of cooking including mixing, beating and rolling, kitchen safety, and completing a project. You can match the recipes with the maturity of the child, and have enjoyable and productive cooking periods that really have an impact over time. When a child is able to make something that is really tasty and brings a lot of compliments, she will get an important sense of satisfaction and self-esteem.

Another idea is to choose some favorite recipes that you haven't prepared for a long time. These could be your old favorites or your mother's or grandmother's. You might have to do research to find the proper recipe, either in the family "archives" or possibly the internet. The time-tested dishes will be a treat for you as well as the family.

Also, you might want to take a practical approach to spending more time in the kitchen. There are an unlimited number of recipes that you can make on a Saturday or Sunday, and use for two to three meals during the week, with only a minimum of further preparation required. So the time spent cooking on one day can save a lot of time later, as well as providing some great meals. Such dishes might include a baked ham or turkey, pot-roast, large pasta dish such as manicotti, a pork roast, etc. Also a large vegetable or potato casserole could be prepared along with the main dish.

You could plan and cook something that you've thought about many times but never done. You could make a surprise meal for your family, an extra special dessert, bake homemade bread which is always a big hit, do a Thai dinner, and so on. It's a lot easier to really get involved and enjoy a novel undertaking.

Almost everyone has been given a new small appliance or gadget for the kitchen that they have never had the opportunity to use. . It might be your food processor, a pasta maker, a special baking pan for biscotti, scones or popovers, or a Panini maker. You can choose several recipes that require your new tools or attachments and have a good time creating a new dish. If you can involve someone else, make a new dish, use some new tools, or save some time, it can be a lot easier to look forward to and enjoy more serious cooking.

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About The Author, George Willison
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