HAPPY NEW YEARNINGS TO COOK!
Is anyone out there in cyberspace looking for a delicious alternative to take-out, frozen & fast food?Â For those who have never cooked before, Stop Blogging and Cook.com is here to help.Â A manual of a sorts â€“ beginning January 1st, 2010 â€“ a handbook for feeding oneself.Â Better to take command of the food you eat than to be bullied around by it.Â Yes?
This is one worthwhile New Yearâ€™s resolution that you can keep.Â January first is as good a time as any to do something different. Â You donâ€™t have to learn to cook a lot of different kinds of things, just enough to be able to feed yourself.Â And as you experiment, you might be motivated to seek out other ways to make the food that you eat.Â This is the goal.
RESOLVED . . . TO BLOG & TO COOK
My resolution is that I will write posts throughout the week to keep you well-fed; if you resolve to read it, you will gain skills for the rest of your life.Â They say that twenty-one days makes a habit, but eating well for only a few weeks isnâ€™t fooling anyone.Â A year makes a lifestyle of good eating habits, giving you resources for a lifetime.Â You know, teach someone to fish . . . .
Cooking is easier than you think.Â Like anything else, the later started the more difficult it seems. Â It is also relative. Â If youâ€™ve never done it, it only appears complex and mysterious.Â Mystery is revealed as you begin to experiment.
Vegetarians and carnivores, come along. Â As much as I believe in the value of knowing how to turn pan drippings into a rich gravy, meat doesnâ€™t have to be on the plate for the meal to be satisfying.Â Everyone wonders about what to fix for lunch and dinner.Â Weâ€™ve got three hundred and sixty-five days of cooking and eating ahead.Â We can do it!Â Think Iâ€™m kidding?Â No, Iâ€™m not kidding.
Not only will I be writing about dishes developed over the years, I will also be formulating others using ingredients found in specialty shops, green markets and groceries all over the City, and writing about that as well.Â With your feedback, I will guide you through the process of shopping and cooking meals that you maybe never imagined you would be preparing and eating.
JOIN THE ADVENTURE!
In New York City, my adopted home for the past decade, there is an unlimited number of food shops, butchers, sushi stands, markets and grocery store â€“ from Chinatown to the East Village to the Upper West Side â€“ so Manhattan is my grocer.Â I want to encourage you to go beyond your neighborhood and explore the food on your daily travel route.Â Adventures like this will acquaint you with the bounty of the eating spectrum.Â The essential element is to feed yourself, even if your radius is confined to the distance between your home and the nearest Safeway.
Eating is pretty basic, but essential.Â Our lives depend upon it.Â Anyone currently eating a lot of commercially prepared food â€“ take-out, fast andÂ processed (canned, frozen and worse) â€“ is not doing a lot of cooking for themselves. Â I wondered why that is so? Â Is it a lack of time?Â Or a lack of ideas about what to cook? Â Or how?
NO TRAIN, NO GAIN
As with many things, cooking takes some training and a little dedication, but those who really want to eat better will soon find that itâ€™s well worth it. Â And giving it a go is infinitely more important than waiting until you have all of the accoutrements, like brand new spices in matching jars or a hideously expensive set of cookware.Â When was the last time you were invited in to admire someoneâ€™s pots and pans?Â Desire is even more important than having lots of disposable time.Â I will assist in the adoption of good habits.Â I guarantee that reward will exceed effort. Â Part of your reward is that you can eat the results of that effort.Â Immediate gratification is definitely in your future.
Armchair cooks are about a useful to eating well as armchair hang-gliders are to flight. Â My intent is to get people off of their www and into the kitchen, no matter how little time they have.Â This is a blog to get feedback from newly minted cooks.Â Your comments will reveal how youâ€™re coming along, and how I can help.
Invite children: Â nieces, nephews and grandchildren; friends of your own kids; your hip, bachelor brother; anyone around the house who eats. Â So, everyone into the kitchen! Â There is no such thing as too much help. Â People are eager to help, even cranky teenagers.Â Let the boys know that skill in the kitchen is a chick magnet.Â We all love to talk to the cook, so invite them in and put them to work. Â When finished, everyone eats!
Weâ€™re putting the â€™skillâ€™ in skillet, right here, for a year, from 1/1/10 to 1/1/11.Â Youâ€™ll be cooking up a storm well before this time next year.Â If you can read, you can begin the process of gaining confidence in the kitchen. Â We start with very basic techniques â€” involving foods readily available â€” and slowly advance over the course of the year.Â Things wonâ€™t get more difficult, just more interesting.Â So kick off your shoes, climb into comfy sweats, and letâ€™s get cookin!