What should you do first before you start cooking?

Clean as much of the work space as you can. Grab a side towel and find your pot holders. Place and prepare all your ingredients. How to start your culinary journey, from frying eggs and sautéing pasta to roasting chickens and making soup I've been cooking at home for a decade and, honestly, I'm still pretty basic.

Sometimes I'm embarrassed that I haven't stopped grilling chickens and simmering beans, but right now, the basics aren't a crutch, it's useful. With that spirit in mind, I have prepared a series of recipes and notes on recipes that become very, very basic. Consider it a road map to competition in the kitchen, a few pages from the home cooking grammar manual of the dialect I speak. Not sure where to buy groceries right now? Restaurants are becoming markets and many farms offer CSA boxes.

Fresh produce and meat and eggs from small producers taste more like them and make simple meals tastier, and if you can afford to support small producers right now, it's a great way to help the entire food system. I trust a rice cooker; they can be quite cheap and are usually easy to buy at grocery stores, for now, I'm sure it's much less predictable. If you can't get a rice cooker or don't want one, it's quite possible to make rice on the stove. In addition, rice in its creamy porridge form is another great platform for a meal or for turning leftovers into a meal.

Now that you have broth, you have another way to use up leftover chicken, beans, vegetables, rice, and whatever you still need to cook in your refrigerator. Soup for cleaning the fridge is definitely a thing. Our ancestors couldn't afford refrigeration. That can cut cooking time in half during the week.

When you start cooking, you'll feel like you're cheating if you only cook once a week, and you'll want to immediately start trying to cook every day. You're not cheating, you're just succumbing to the same reflex that tells us that going to the gym isn't worth it unless we do it every day for an hour. In reality, every incremental step helps. Spices are the backbone of the kitchen.

Being able to use spices correctly makes your kitchen set from zero to one hundred. Once you master the essentials and have the confidence to cook and for other people, there will be many adventurous recipes and complicated cooking techniques that you can start experimenting with. I have become servile when it comes to reading recipes at least a couple of times before I start cooking, so that nothing catches me off guard. The added advantage of this is that if the kitchen craze becomes popular in your circle of friends, you'll start to be invited to other people's places to eat home-cooked meals.

No, when I started thinking about it, the real reason I didn't cook was not because I didn't have time, but because I wasn't ready to cook.

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