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Ladarzak
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26 Nov 2008, 4:04 pm

Cooking can be difficult when you wade out of your depth. Imagine trying to make some East Indian japati bread if you've never seen it, eaten it, or seen anyone else make it. Once you have some concepts though -- like cooking techniques, what the final result's texture should be like, tips about heat, and familiar with your equipment (gas versus electric and cast iron versus other fry pans make a huge difference) then a recipe is do-able. I consider myself a quite experienced amateur cook, but there's a big difference between trying a new casserole or stir-fry recipe and trying something totally unfamiliar where I don't have the basic skills. Even a simple notch up like trying to make meatballs when you already know how to make hamburgers can be a bit of a mess. (The meatballs usually need something to hold them together, like egg, where the hamburger really doesn't, for example.)

There was a time when I liked to try to make everything the same way each time, but that is now too laborious, because I may not have the exact ingredients. Now I'm into varying things or creating something with whatever is available. It often feels like making something of nothing and that is actually fun.



KatieRose212
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26 Nov 2008, 5:14 pm

I love cooking so much!

It's probably my most favourite thing to do...


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BastetsEye
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26 Nov 2008, 7:19 pm

I'm quite good at cooking in the sense it tastes really good, not so much in the turning out like it's supposed to...

..to quote my mum "this soup makes a real tasty quiche!"

Unfortunately I can only cook if someone lights the gas for me, as I can't stand being so close to a flame, and we can't afford an elec oven.



pensieve
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26 Nov 2008, 7:36 pm

I can make stir fry but that's about it.
I can heat things up in the oven and use the grill.
But cooking something that takes over an hour is not something I can do.



ephemerella
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26 Nov 2008, 7:48 pm

Cooking is currently a Minor Special Interest (won't get upgraded to Major Special Interest unless I do it immersively for more than 6 months).

Home cooking is a critical skill for me, I've discovered, because losing control over my diet and eating too much wheat, junk food or preservative-laced foods makes me end up with poor executive function and depression. I'm about 20-30 percent more functional on average on a high-performance diet that is high in fresh vegetables, moderate in whole grain non-wheat carbs, and I get good oils and protein. My functioning deteriorates when I eat out or eat American style cooking.

I'm working on the Optimal Asperger Diet, which is low gluten, high in fresh veggies, are simple, straightforward recipes with as little cooking and prep as possible. If half the stuff on the dish is raw, that is not only healthy but easy, takes little time and low carbon footprint. Thai food is really quick and simple to prepare but has a lot of fresh veggies and flavor to it, for example.

RubieRoze wrote:
I love to amass loads of information about cooking; I have books; I have equipment; I have spices; I watch PBS cooking and food shows all the time, but I don't have time to try all that stuff. Efficiency wins out.!


I'm doing that too! I'm amassing loads of books, equipment and spices from all over the world.

Waltr wrote:
Baking is another story. That requires strict compliance with a recipe or results in disaster far too often.


Me too. Anything that requires a lot of scheduling or coordination is rough for me. French cooking, with its multiple ingredients, is complex and exhausting. Baked is usually a disaster unless it's some meat or vegetable roast.

BastetsEye wrote:
Unfortunately I can only cook if someone lights the gas for me, as I can't stand being so close to a flame, and we can't afford an elec oven.


I have a fear of pressurized gas tanks associated with flames.

I'm intensely into flavors, colors and textures in food. I have a theory of taste that maps different "flavor bouquets" from different cultures to something like a wine tasting wheel. So if you like fusion cooking or ingredient substitution, some Thai flavors are not that different from the Coast of Italy, if you understand how each constructs its flavors. I used my Vietnamese Fish Sauce in an Italian Anchovy Tomato sauce for pasta a couple of days ago, for example (had no fresh anchovies).



LiendaBalla
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26 Nov 2008, 8:38 pm

i'm ok at it. I took chef classes, but just remember what tasted good and how jerms grow. Not how I cooked them. What you are able to cook depends on what you are making to. Cream of Chicken? Holy @#$ that sucks! Sure, it's ok, but the effort bites. (unless you really would like to spend half an hour putting the soup through a cheese cloth.)

Cheddar soup is worse! (tastes awsome when done right though) If it's too hot, cheese clumps up and gets nasty. Too cold, it just doesn't melt, so that's a pain to. Apple pie, meat loaf, fried chicken? No prob. They much easier. Just examples. I met someone, however, that tried to make brownies, and despite following the recipee perfectly, it turned into goop rather than brownies. Wierd really. They did it correctly, I saw myself.



Last edited by LiendaBalla on 26 Nov 2008, 8:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Mage
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26 Nov 2008, 8:38 pm

I love cooking. I'll go at the same recipe 20+ times til I get it perfect.