Friday, February 27, 2009

Learning to Cook: Chronicles of a Kitchen Klutz

I'll be the first to admit I am not much of a cook.  I can bake a mean cookie or brownie, but ask me to do a meal and I become a bit of a klutz in the kitchen.  But I am honestly trying.  I dream of the day that I can just whip something up from the ingredients in the fridge.  When I can experiment with flavors and know exactly what ingredients to substitute without googling it.  

Turner has started a nice little incentive with me that if I pick out the recipe at the beginning of the week, he will get the ingredients and I'll cook it.  I'm looking forward to trying new recipes and hopefully becoming more comfortable in the kitchen.  I decided to start chronicling my cooking successes and failures once in a while on here.  This will keep me going with my personal cooking project and I'll be able to track my progress.  And maybe this will offer a little bit of inspiration for my fellow kitchen klutzes out there.

Wednesday night was the first week of my cooking challenge.  It was also one of the first times I completely strayed from a recipe and it turned out amazing!  Because of time issues, Turner did step in and help me with this one.

We started out with an extremely bland simple stir fry recipe but added red peppers, carrots, and ginger.  Instead of Peanut oil, which we couldn't find at the store, we used a stir fry sauce watered down with olive oil.  

I made an additional honey peanut sauce recipe, which was amazing and gave it an extra kick.  Instead of rice vinegar (which we also didn't have on hand) I used fresh lime juice.  I'm learning so much about substitutes!  We served everything on top of general stir fry noodles from the chinese aisle of the grocery store.  

There was so much adding and substituting, I'm not sure if we could recreate it again.  But it has definitely given me more confidence to stop being so rigid with the measuring cup and ingredient list and just start playing with my food!  

While I ran out to get a few extra ingredients, Turner was in charge of chopping up the veggies.  When I got home, this is what he had created for me.  Such beautiful presentation!

Turner stirring everything up.

The final product (before the noodles)


  1. I'm glad you figured out a peanut sauce to use! Also, you should post your final recipes, with your additions and subtractions, it would be nice to have!

  2. Good call, I will definitely start including the recipes. I hadn't decided to start doing this feature until after I had already made this dish. So I didn't keep track of measurements or anything. If you still want me to post the recipe with generalizations I can, just let me know! And I definitely plan to take more photographs in the future.


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