The first time I tried cooking, I had a spiteful enemy it wanted me out of the kitchen.
And how I needed some protection from that! Holding a huge plate as my shield, I felt the need to tread lightly before taking a peek on the dish I was cooking. And that was the same moment when this enemy of mine vented its anger on me. I jumped and yelled a couple of times because it almost succeeded in reaching my face! Bad cooking oil!
Cooking could be loads and loads of fun. And as for me, my initial experiences were on the brink of being disastrous but hilarious. From cutting my finger, using the wrong sauce, to overcooking and burning parts of my hands, I had quite a lot of mistakes that left me belly laughing now. But then, each time I had my cooking practice, there was this renewed determination to try again. That was the effect of cooking lessons to me.
Then the next challenge after that was when I finally needed to invite my special someone and friends to eat what I cooked. Gosh, I felt so nervous! Just what would they say? My excitement was almost beyond me.
That was the time I realized how much my boyfriend cared for me. Imagine him eating the first dish I cooked, and he was trying very hard to keep a straight face. He was doing his best to munch the food in a way that would appear as if he was having a wonderful time tasting the dish. He was almost euphoric as he tried finding the right words to describe the food in the manner that would really, really please me. That could have been the worst moments of his life as he tried to finish eating my dish with gusto!
Then my friends finally arrived to taste my “specialty.” They were also very supportive but were not as convincing like my boyfriend, though. Because they didn’t rehearse the words they’d say, they’d often speak in unison but their opinions were in contrast with each other!
Then honesty got the better of them. They praised me for the effort and the determination to learn how to cook, but they did imply that it needed improvement. Oh, well, at least everybody had been appreciative. They even gave me advice. Afterwards, I promised myself to cook again, but the next time around would be much, much better!
But that next time didn’t turn out the way I planned. I lavishly poured seasonings that it became too salty and spicy. This time the people who tasted it no longer needed to hide their opinions. They didn’t even have to utter a word. Their facial expressions say it all!
Have you also experienced those comic scenes while trying to cook for the first time? Well, if you’re like me who’d truly want to learn how to cook despite the failing efforts, then let me share with you these simple tips from my friends:
Start with simple dishes.
Since it’s your first time, try easy-to-cook meals. That will help you build the confidence you need to be able to prepare your dishes. Starting with not-so-complicated dishes will inspire you to cook more. You’ll feel like a pro!
Watch varieties of cooking videos.
This will help you familiarize yourself from cutting different vegetables and meat to cooking different dishes. It’s also better to see how chefs and even ordinary housewives cook their meals.
Use cookbooks or google recipes from the internet and print them as your guide.
It’s better to stick with the prescribed measurements while you’re cooking for the first time, until you learn to determine the right amount of quantity of salt, sugar, sauce, and other ingredients without using measuring cups and spoons anymore.
Take note of cooking terms.
Words such as vinaigrette, julienne, or al dente are quite exciting to learn and to be added to your vocabulary. There are so much cooking terms you’ll discover as you explore different types of dishes. What’s more, you’re not only learning the words, you’re also learning how to do them!
Use seasonings little by little.
Don’t just pour them all on your dish. This way, you’ll get the chance to pour just a bit of them to perfect its taste without making the dish too salty, sour, spicy or sweet. You can adjust it according to your preferred taste if you put a little amount of everything first.
Be creative with your dishes.
By using the internet, you can now have guides or samples on making new dishes that will provide thrill to the ones who will get the chance to eat your food. You can even try cooking international meals! However do this only when you’ve already become used to cooking variations of delectable, local dishes.
Be creative with your presentations too.
People will find your dish–with nice plating and with a bit of ornaments–tempting enough to devour. You can likewise search the internet to give you ideas on food presentation techniques. Well, dishes that are presented beautifully are almost always really good enough to eat.
Don’t cook in large quantity when there are only a few who will get to eat your food.
When people see too much of one dish on the table, they won’t feel so excited to eat that. So just cook in moderate quantity but you’d better make sure the dish is still in good quality. Also, when persons find just a small amount of luscious food on the table, they’ll find it mouthwatering and they’ll all want to eat that! As a consequence, you’ll feel like a very successful chef!
Be health conscious.
Check what ingredients shouldn’t always be used in your dishes. If your loved ones have gout, coronary artery disease, high blood pressure and the like, take into considerations the foods that won’t trigger or aggravate their conditions. That will benefit you too. Choosing healthy ingredients will also help you become fit and strong!
Think about love!
People say that when you think of your loved ones every time you cook, you’ll have the best ingredient in your dishes. It’s because you’ll do your best when you think about the persons who’ll eat your meals. So go ahead and think about them when you cook.
Learning how to cook for the first time is such a funny and exciting phase of your life. Enjoy every moment of it and learn to laugh at your own mistakes. Just don’t ever give up. One day soon, you’ll wake up and realize you’re finally able to produce delicious and healthy dishes.