Inspired by the post at Elanas Pantry (click on the title to go there) I had a think about why I cook. The big answer is simple - I love to eat. A bit too much to be honest, I am edging above (again) my fighting (ie look my hottest) weight at the moment! Bought a couple of things (understatement) in M&S at the weekend as I had a credit note from Christmas and it was a pleasure - I am still a 12 in there, their sizes are always on the more generous side!
I cooked a bit before starting the Best Bet Diet but it was after that I really started getting into it: it was so much harder to buy really nice stuff, any sort of variety and the prices were shocking. The gluten free cakes and brownies on offer? I could make better. Pasta sauce, curry sauce etc - no variey, over priced and what the hell is in there anyway? Once you start reading labels to check it is free from Gluten, Dairy and Legumes you start to notice all the other stuff thats in there and if it doesnt sound like food I don't want it in my body! Oh and my favourite rant - is rice pwder really twice as expensive as milk? Oh and just because my food is healthy and I have cut out some things doesn't mean I want to eat twigs and leaves! Oh and .... I could go on but will spare you for now.
Once I started to get into it I started to really enjoy it; it really is relaxing, I get a great sense of achievement out of something that turns out great (especially cakes, though that may also be the anticipation of eating them) and I am a total feeder: I love to dish up something tasty to friends and family (though you may notice in other posts that my family as a whole aren't foodies) and have them enjoy it and go away with full tummies. Like Nigella* I am never knowingly under catered and it is very rare that there aren't a LOT of left overs. In fact there have been occasions where the left overs were enough to do the whole party again. Sometimes of course the left overs are on purpose coz I want them! There is also the Greys style baking as substitution :-) if you dont watch Greys Anatomy then I will leave it to you imagination I think!
I love cookery programmes, watch way to much of the Good Food channel, set my Sky+ for the new series of Jamie, Nigella, Ina Garten etc (noone too fancy I am a home cook not a chef!) or Supersizers and have a mass of cookery books and a drawer full of recipes I have pulled out of magazines and papers (sometimes mine, sometimes other peoples to their annoyance no doubt) which I simply must try and get excited about trying new things but always trying to find a cheats way to do it! Home cooking to me is not about impressing people (though I do like to show off a bit occasionally, who doesn't!) it's about enjoying the process and the product and entertaining should be pleasurable for you and your guests! I shall save the story of me showering myself in aubergine dip for another post! Noone enjoys a get together where the host is a red faced, strung out, panicked bunny - not the host and not the guests.
The blogging started when people started asking me for recipes in a 'my niece can't eat dairy how do you make chocolate cake' or 'mmmmmm I want to make those' type way - I figured it was easier to stick them all somewhere central than keep typing out emails and it would give me something to go back to when I wanted to do something again. I also thought it would get me back into a bit of writing; I remember planning to write a best selling novel at some point but life kind of got in the way. Brevity, as you can see, was never my strong point! I've kind of lost my way with the blogging; I tried to keep to the facts and that wasn't fun to write and then I got behind ...This year, a New Years Resolution if you will, I am determined not to just get up to date but to enjoy it, it's my blog and if I want to talk about the fantastic shoes I bought while the cake was cooling I will. I love shoes :-).
So I shall continue to cook and bake (not too much baking while the christmas pounds are still hanging around) and blog and eat, and eat some more ... I hope you all enjoy reading and try some of the recipes, I know Sarahs Chocolate Orange Cake has been a success for quite a few! Don't be shy about commenting when you've had a go; some of my best ideas have been nicked off other people ;-)
If you do a 'why do I cook' blog post link back so the trail leads back to the originator!
PS I have no idea who Michael Ruhlman is! Anyone want to comment?
* I think it was Nigella, but my memory is not to be trusted
Welcome all, fill your tum with my num num nums.
Gluten, Dairy & Legume free recipes; some by design, others are just nice recipes that happen to be! There are recipes and also shopping 'finds', all of which are good for free from people and all yummy whether you are following a particular diet or not! Just because something is 'free from' doesn't mean everyone can't enjoy it - and you may be surpised at how much happier your body is.
'Special' is how my friends describe my food and me, I don't think it's entirely complimentary!