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Food Porn

I have a confession to make. The past few months, I have only stepped in my kitchen to wash dishes, make coffee, feed the dog and use my laptop.

The whole cooking thing that’s supposed to go on in there? Not happening. Not by me anyway. Bill will cook—mostly for himself, because I’m more apt to come home from work and eat a bowl of cereal. Or a Fudgesicle.

But here’s the thing—I am a good cook. In fact, I think I’m better than good. When I want to be.

I’m addicted to cookbooks, food magazines, food blogs. I love flipping through the pages and savoring recipes I want to try. I watch the Food Network all weekend long. I record shows on the TV in the kitchen so I will watch there and be inspired. It’s porn. Total food porn.

I love food. I love eating food. Buying food, searching for interesting ingredients. Smelling food. There’s something amazing about a perfectly prepared meal—and it doesn’t matter if it’s in a restaurant or at a friend’s house. I love it. And I’ve always loved it. When I was a kid (about 11 to 15), I was home alone after school because both of my parents worked, so I’d get dinner started for my mom (who isn’t a great cook, so it was probably self-preservation). I’d make everything from Sweet & Sour chicken to pot roast. In the summer if I wasn’t reading or at our local pool, I’d raid my mom’s pantry, see what ingredients we had and match it to a recipe in my mom’s collection. I dedicated one summer to baking. My parents came home every night to lemon meringue pie, red velvet cake, cupcakes, Rice Krispy Treats, pineapple upside down cake (it was a fat summer for all of us).

I love cooking for others. When we have friends or family coming over for the weekend or for a nice dinner, I’ll sit down with my cookbooks, magazines and blogs, plan the menu, go shopping and spend a day in the kitchen. It makes me happy. I like learning new techniques and practicing them when I cook. A couple of weeks ago, we had my granddaughter and daughter in law over and I made homemade pizzas on the grill with a blue cheese wedge salad. It was pretty damn good, if I say so myself.

I used to dream about going to cooking school. In fact, our local college is opening a school right near me and I’m considering taking some classes.

But—and this is a big but—I have no patience for it during the week. The last thing I feel like doing when I get home is cook dinner. I have all the basics, so putting something together shouldn’t be a big deal, but I can’t even stand the idea of opening a can of peas and heating them up to serve with one of those cooked chickens from the grocery store. Yes, I am THAT lazy.

I think part of my problem is that I don’t know how to tone it down. I don’t know how to make something for just one or two people (and that’s important because oddly, I don’t eat leftovers). I can’t cook for less than 10 people (or so it seems).

I need something easy. I need something fast.

This is a dumb question, but what is your go-to meal when you get home?

I’ve gotta figure something out. I need to get my ass back in the kitchen and feed someone other than the dog.

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5 Responses

  1. Alright. As someone who has been at the receiving end of your cooking (on more than one occasion) I can attest to the fact that you are WAY WAY WAY BETTER THAN BETTER THAN GOOD. Dear. God.

    I had cereal for dinner. When you could have cooked for me. You shouldn’t feel badly though. Ahem.

    Lemme know when you want to whip out your culinary skills. I’LL BE RIGHT OVER. Even if I’ve just eaten. Even if it’s two in the morning. Even if, EVEN if.

  2. Our go-to meal is hamburger stew:
    1 pound of hamburger cooked and drained
    2 cans chopped taters
    2 cans mixed veggies
    2 cans brown gravy
    enough water to dilute gravy to a soup texture.
    Combine and simmer.

    We also do this in the crock pot sometimes! =)

  3. I am with you totally addicted.. Our easy weeknight go to meal is tri tip burritos / tacos – I toss a tri tip in the crock pot covering it with water and adding a bunch of tex mex seasonings and a fresh lime or 2, let it cook all day – shred and eat for at least a couple meals.. It is so DAMN easy and good.

  4. So far, it seems that people actually use their crock pots. Mine is in the garage.

  5. damn you used a good hook in the title

    I don’t cook but I also don’t expect my wife to cook either. She often does and she’s really good – better than my mother was (I have told her that too).

    My problem is she wants me to cook. Boiling water and hitting buttons on the microwave, that’s my idea. I know that’s not cooking.

    So if I read your post correctly, you are not being asked to cook but you feel guilty not cooking. Sometimes we are too hard on ourselves.

    Oh I enjoy leftovers – your’s sound good – let me know I’ll give you a shipping address.

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