adventures in my kitchen
cooking with love
"Any fool can cook. ! You just have to make the instructions idiot proof!"
Such were the disparaging remarks(Ifelt) from my husband recently. After I had let him know my feelings about such a remark, he defended himself by explaining that "anyone is capable of cooking if they follow the instructions carefully (that sounds better)
Easy for him to say , I thought. Not only is he a professional chef but cooking is still his hobby.
He likes nothing better than to spend a few hours in the kitchenat home at the end of a long day in the kitchen at work...
This may sound wonderful for me. In fact many of our friends think I'm the luckiest woman on earth, but, I can assure you these are the friends who have never had to clean up after this master chef has been at work.
No-one else I know can use as many pots, pans,dishes, plates,,knives forks spoons, you name it!!!!This is when he is cooking for only 2 of us. Besides I actually like being able to get into my own kitchen once in a while.
When we were first married I was determined to be a more adventurous cook than my mother had been. She cooked marvellous roast dinners and a superb apple pie. Nothing wrong with that. Most people of her generation in Britain cooked that way . Also the variety of ingredients were not as available as they are today.
My adventures in the kitchen bagan with an Italian cookbook. It surprised me that a steaming bowl of pastashells or spirals with a simple meat or tomato sauce could be so easy to do and yet so delicious. Also it needed to be only a slight variation on the basic spagetti bolognese to be quite impressive.
When I bagan to feel more confident I attempted to make my own pasta. (Do Italian women REALLYdo this every day?)
I must say the final result was delicous but I still squirm when I think of dropping a raw egg onto a mound of flour and using my fingers to mix it.. Ugh!!!(apparently this the only way to make real home-made pasta) Oh! and don't forget that to be seriously authentic you must hang the pasta over the back of a chair to 'dry' before boiling it in slightly salted water..
By the time I had mastered the basics of Italian cooking I had the greatest admiration for all Italian housewives and I still enjoy making an authentic lasagne. Although I no longer attempt to make the pasta by hand.
I have grown to love slight variations on the traditional recipes. One of my favourites is lasagne WITHOUT the lasagne. Just make a number of thin pancakes and layer them with your meat sauce and cheese sauce as you would normally. A little grated cheese on top.!!!Fantastic. Add some crusty bread and a bottle of good wine and you have a simple supper that is respectable enough to serve to friends.
Speaking of friends, I've discovered the best way to get into my own kitchen is to invite a couple of friends to lunch, while my husband is busy at work.
A relaxing lunch once in a while ,to step back from all our busy lives, catch up on eachothers' news is wonderful.
Good food, good wine and good friends have to be three of the most enjoyable and precious things in life. Not forgetting of course, good husbands...