Wednesday, 10 August 2011

Cooking from Scratch

One of the core ingredients to living our simple, healthy and frugal life is cooking from scratch.  I love cooking and baking, and so does DH.  I've always been pretty ok at baking, I used to do quite a bit growing up.  But with cooking, although I enjoyed it even up to a few years ago I couldn't cook from scratch. I had a few skills that came from cooking with Mum, Dad and my sister, oh and lets not forget home economics at school. I could make a few things from scratch like cheese sauce, I could make a good mashed spud and I knew from home economics a yummy curried mince recipe.  I had no clue how to do a lot of things though like roast a chicken, make sauces to use in dishes, make spag bol or anything like that.  I used jars and packets of things to make my dinners, my roast chickens came already stuffed and seasoned with a baking bag and all I had to do was bung it in the oven for the time stated and I had cooked it. All these things were yummy, so I thought I could cook ok, but they weren't from scratch. They were also VERY EXPENSIVE.

This really changed for me when a dear friend gave me her stack of Destitute Gourmet books to borrow.  I can now cook from scratch!  Over the last few years I have gotten more confident and brave with my cooking, I am learning more everyday.  I seem to have quite a few of my friends and family ask for recipes of things I make. 

So I thought part of my blog would be to post my recipes so that I can share them with anyone who wants them and hopefully get some more ideas back from my readers. But mostly my driving force is to spread the message about cooking from scratch.  To help support anyone who reads this and doesn't know where to start or knows a little but needs a few recipes and a bit of help to get them going.  I have been at the place of not knowing where to start and I remember just how daunting the whole cooking from scratch concept can be.

So the first thing I did when I got serious about teaching myself to cook was to go and get a book, it was just a journal with lined pages.  This became my own cookbook to compile recipes in.  You could use a folder though with dividers and sort your recipes alphabetically or however you work personally.  My recipe book is a little all over the place now LOL, I have added so many things to it that I know whats in there but not sure where it is so very soon I'm off to sort out a better system.  Another good place for recipes is GOOGLE.  You can find almost every recipe imaginable on google. I would recommend starting off with more basic ones first, you can even just take one ingredient such as the cut of meat you have and google recipes with that ingredient.  Just make sure you bookmark the pages! I have spent a great deal of time looking back through my browser history to find recipes I hadn't bookmarked - silly me. 

My very well used personal recipe book


So I hope you enjoy the recipes I post on here.  I will only post ones that I have made myself and therefore know they work.  A lot of the time I take the base of a recipe and I change it up to suit our tastes or what I think may work better, so most of my recipes have been adapted in some way or another :) Maybe you can further adapt them and improve them and then send them back to me in the comments :) 

I will also where possible take photos of the process of making these recipes to support you along the way if you are a bit unsure of what to be doing.  A lot of this comes from personal experience - there were many a time when I was first getting into cooking and sometimes even now, where I stand at my stove and say to the boys...."I'm not sure its meant to look like this!"  

On that note of the boys, I have always involved them in some way or another with baking and now we are moving into cooking. Children love to help and you can teach them while you work so you can be safe in the knowledge that when it comes time in the years to come for them to fly from your nest, that they to can cook from scratch.

The world of cooking from scratch and baking is a fantastic one, there are endless possibilities, flavours galore to experiment with and the sense of satisfaction when you have succeeded and plated up a gorgeous meal to nourish your family that you have made from scratch - there is nothing better in life I believe!

I love creating and getting messy in my kitchen, so I hope you join me :)


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Hiya, thanks for taking the time to comment on my post. I can't wait to read your comments and to share ideas, I am a busy mummy with 2 boys to run around after so I will try and get to comments as quickly as I can...if there is a delay in seeing them published this is why, not because I don't care, I'm just taking some time to smell the roses :)

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