Saturday, November 29, 2014

And what's more, baby, I can cook!

When I lived in my tiny apartment, I had a two burner stovetop that only really worked on one side, a microwave, a tiny George Foreman grill, an old crockpot, and a toaster oven, and very little counter space. I really enjoyed cooking, but with limited resources, I had to get really good at mise en place - setting up and timing all my food so that it finishes at the right times.

3.5 years of that was great practice, but when I moved into my now apartment, I was thrilled to have, in addition to a microwave, a gas stove with four working burners, a full-sized oven, and we received a new crockpot, Griddler, griddle, and some really nice stainless steel, copper-bottomed cookware as wedding presents. And we have a dishwasher! And I have a really cute sous chef!

Basically, I have a real, grownup kitchen now, and even two years after moving in, I'm still in love with it. My mise en place skills still require practice, but with full-sized everything, and frequent help from my aforementioned sous chef, I'm feeling more confident all the time.

Yesterday, we planned to eat around 5 PM. If you count when I made the homemade bread that became our stuffing, I actually started cooking at least two weeks ago. The turkey started defrosting on Sunday and I dried the bread on Wednesday. On the day of, I started making food around 11 AM and continued making things at various points throughout the day. Thanks to all the practice I've had and that same marvelous sous chef, everything was done within about ten minutes of each other and we sat down for our delicious dinner at 5:15 PM.

Yes, I'm bragging, but I'm feeling really pleased with myself right now. After dinner, we cleaned up what was still out, which was not a lot since we cleaned up as went with all the cooking throughout the day, a skill I learned from my dear mother. Then, while Blake completed the dismemberment of our turkey, I made a chocolate chip cookie pie and put it in the oven. By the time it had baked and cooled, our stomachs had settled enough to enjoy the fresh pie.

Sometimes, I still time things poorly, but it's okay. I'm still learning, and cooking is a skill I hope to keep developing.

Sous chef in training in the tiny kitchen, June 2012

Told you he was handsome

Stuffing made with homemade bread in the crockpot, probably the best stuffing I've ever had, if I do say so myself


Giggles said...

Woo hoo for cooking skills!

And there are certain meals I totally brag on, Thanksgiving definitely being one of them.

AmandaStretch said...

I don't think there is anything wrong with that!

Heidi said...

You deserve to brag! Well done!