Every thing is more fun when it’s your choice,
and not something you feel forced to do. This also applies to cooking. So instead of carrying out this “chore” Daily, why not think of it as your special time everyday, where you relax, shut the world off and enjoy an activity that is so rewarding. You will see that cooking is an amazing De-stress Activity!
Here are some tips that might help you enjoy this activity a tad more…
- The most fun in cooking is how it lends itself to your creativity. Try your own recipe variations and new foods. Cook a familiar dish in a completely new way. I like having my class participants add just one new spice or ingredient to something they already know how to make. You won’t believe the excitement that practice generates! A very familiar soup tastes really different with a teaspoon of curry instead of the same old allspice. You can experiment with less common herbs such as rosemary, lemongrass, lavender, tarragon or sumac. Or you can experiment with spices…etc. try the same recipe with different flavours and see how it completely transforms, giving you many options out of one.
- Enjoy the aromas, colors, and textures of your cooking. Not only will this make cooking more enjoyable, but over time this increases your understanding of ingredients, textures and flavours, which will allow you to create more interesting meals after all. Sample the foods as you cut and cook them… Smell the spices before you add them and taste before and after to learn the difference.
- Take a cooking class. There is nothing like acquiring new skills and know-how to ignite your passion for cooking. The more you learn the better you cook and the more interested you become.. It is a cycle that can only lead to better food. Classes are also a fun way to meet ‘common-interest’ people and share cooking knowledge and tips.
- Make your kitchen the centre of your home, where everyone wants to gather. This will make you feel less isolated in the kitchen and will keep it as the family hub, which will eventually get your kids even more enthusiastic about food and less fussy as they are more involved. A fun kitchen is always a happy place where memories are made.
- Make a day a week for cooking with close family members or friends. There is nothing more fun than cooking with people we love. I cook with my husband everyday and cook with my sister almost every week. I frequently invite a few friends over and we cook together, am telling you there is nothing more fun. You get to socialise, catch up and not only that, but cooking in a group takes away from the daunting time required by demanding recipes such as making Kubbeh or pastries for instance. This means you can produce more food for later use and still have fun making it.
- Always turn up the volume when in the kitchen, don’t cook in silence! Music really lifts up your spirit, puts you in the mood and instantly transforms the experience to more fun. When you are in a good mood you cook great food. So turn it up like nobody’s business! You might even want to sing at the top of your lungs, why keep your talent confined to the shower curtain and walls!!
- Cook the food that excites you. There is no rule that you should stick to any specific cuisine or food type. Change is always exciting both to you and your family.
- Cook for others. The act of preparing a meal for friends or family can make cooking feel more fun as well as meaningful. Even if it’s not a special occasion, inviting a couple of people over to share your home-cooked meal can give you some incentive to make something fabulous. Also throwing a bash for the family and gathering over food is perhaps the most fun activity ever.
- Don’t be afraid to fail. Even if you think you are not a good cook, everyone starts somewhere and no one was borne already a Chef! The more you cook the better you become, and the more you mess up, the more you learn about what works and what not! Don’t be too serious, cooking is fun and is not meant for scoring! Although you will hit the Jackpot once you reach a point where you can whip up amazing flavours once you become experienced.
- Cook a theme dinner. Really, this is one of those things that gets me super excited about cooking. Pick a fun cuisine like Spanish tapas or Thai and go home with it. You will enjoy the process and the planning and your family and guests will have a great time too!
- Create a signature dish for yourself, something you perfect and become known for, this usually creates enthusiasm as you get excited about people’s reactions and usually leads to more signature dishes.
- Cook seasonally. Boredom and repetition are what take the fun out of cooking. Take these away by challenging yourself to cook only what’s in season. This way you force the creative juices to flow and who does not enjoy a challenge?! Besides seasonal flavours are not matched with thawed flavours that are jet lagged from long travel!!!
- The fun of cooking starts way before the actual chopping and mixing! Make grocery shopping fun by allowing yourself to be inspired instead of planned. Try the farmers’ market, where you get to sample the produce, meet the farmers, and ask them for tips on how to best use their produce… Farmer markets are so much fun and really inspiring, there is no way the food you cook with those ingredients is going to be boring!
- Ask your mom for a favourite childhood recipe from when you were little. Not only will it bring back so many memories and get you excited, but it will also make your mum happy for showing her you appreciate the meals she cooked for you as a child :)) Mums love it when we ask for their advice.
- Take your cooking to the next level. Get motivated and excite yourself with planning a whole menu that works together! Nothing excites me more than thinking of the flavours and matching the courses and planning a memorable meal that my family and guests will enjoy and most importantly make them look forward to the next time they come over!
Gather, Cook, Eat & Enjoy the company of those you cherish…