Sunday, December 03, 2006

Slacker cook

Apart from boiling up pasta and frying up the odd fish finger, I haven’t really cooked much in the past few years. Grace prepares all the kids meals and she is so capable, I leave her to do the menu planning and marketing.

Sometimes, if I have friends over, its always the same presentation. Tiger prawn linguine with shitake mushrooms. It’s the easiest dish to prepare which requires minimal preparation. You chop up the garlic and shrooms, boil up the spaghetti, peel the prawns and you’re done!

The other thing I’m lazy enough to cook up are leftovers. Half onion in the fridge will be tossed into the egg omelette. Overnight rice is fried up with the meats and veg left over from yesterday’s dinner. That’s why Chinese cooking is perfect for a slacker cook like me. Toss up something with soya sauce and a bit of pepper and you have a stir fry.

But today, I attempted something very different. A Thanksgiving Meal comprising of:

Pumpkin soup
Christmas stuffing
Mashed potatoes and
A roasted bird!

I had the guidance of my mom’s friend who is visiting from the States. She is married to a westerner so she knows how everything is supposed to taste and turn out.

The kitchen looked like a war zone after we’d done. By actual cooking, I realized that my kitchen lacked very basic items a) potato peeler b) knives to accompany forks for western cuisine c) flour for thickening the gravy. I made a quick trip to the 7-eleven to get more butter for the mashed potatoes.

Its been a long time since I’ve been that drained after cooking but I felt a great satisfaction when my brother and his wife came over and tucked in. There was so much to go around, I managed to feed an additional friend. The smells of butter, thyme and sage were permeating in the house from all the cooking. When Grace goes off on Sunday, I usually request that she prepares our meals in advance but there is no need for this in future. Today’s meal provided me with the ‘kick’ I needed.

So this is my December's Resolution:

Once a week on Sunday, I will make it a point to navigate my own kitchen and feed family n' friends food prepared by my own hands.

This isn't something which I thought of myself. My colleague, Lynette started cooking every Sunday. The reason: so that her kids could grow up with a concept of how their mom's cooking tastes like (good or bad). Some things will not change - we'll be trading our quick and easy fish and chicken recipes, some of which start from a base of campbell's mushroom soup.


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