I have spent a lot of time watching the greats make food, on television. I am a lover of cooking shows and books about food. I used to stand in the magazine section of a bookstore practically drooling over the glossy pictures in the foodie section…now I do that on my Instagram feed. So, you would think that would make me a mini-Julia Child or Ina Garten…but here’s the thing…I don’t really cook…it kinda scares me.
I mean, I can make a meal, sort of. I am a frozen veggie, 90 second in the microwave quinoa/brown rice kind of girl. I can scramble eggs and I once made an Easter ham dinner that did not kill my family, but I don’t know…maybe I just don’t have the cooking gene.
Which would really bum me out since I am Italian and that should have been part of my starter kit at birth. Shouldn’t I have come out of the womb asking the hospital staff if they wanted a tray of lasagna or baked ziti? But no, I gave the doctor another gift; that story is for another day.
My mother did not have us in the kitchen as kids. I think she tried, but we weren’t really interested. I wish she would have insisted we learn all the things like normal italian mothers do. I would love to go to gatherings for a potluck and not just bring a dessert that I had a friend make or bought at the bakery.
I worked for a long time in the hospitality industry, especially in restaurants, so my excuse for getting nightly takeout was I am so sick of looking at food, I can’t bear to stand in front of stove and make something. But that’s really just a lie. The chopping, the blending of flavors, the searing, the roasting, the sautéing…it scares me. I can admit now. I am always afraid it will be bad, and my friends will either be polite and eat it anyway or just tell me straight up it’s junk. Either way, fear grips my soul every time I have a spatula in my hand.
My sister and I used to watch the show Chopped all the time. The show where they give you a bunch of weird ingredients and the contestants had to come up with a dish. My sister could always come up with an idea, I was lucky if once a week I had an idea. Or maybe it wasn’t a good idea…maybe she was just throwing a me a bone, like a participation trophy. LOL, the world may never know.
Every year I say I am going to tackle my fear of the oven and never have. I just let the idea slide away, because Neil and I do like to go out to eat. But we are doing that challenge, which means no restaurants. So, this week, I am going to pick a healthy recipe, buy the ingredients, actually attempt to use the oven and I will let you know how it goes. I am determined to become more than just an enjoyer of other people’s creations…this year I want someone to raise a glass in compliments of the cook and to have that cook be me. Bon Appetit!
***Question for the comments…Do you like to cook? Do you have any fears about cooking at all? What is your favorite meal to make?
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