Pat and Bee's Life

At the speed of crazy!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Let's Be Honest - I Don't Cook.

I had a epiphany this morning. One of epic proportions.

It's not that I don't like to cook - it's that figuring out what to cook gives me anxiety attacks, and quite frankly, it's not worth it. Add in that while I can cook most basic (and honestly, some advanced) stuff, I don't know this terminology used by most recipe sites and it's so overwhelming!

I realized this while trying to come up with a meal plan for the week. It started out so well. Andouille sausage with peppers over penne pasta, almond flour chicken with veggies and rice, - and then suddenly I'm sitting at my computer, crying, convinced that my life isn't worth living because I can't figure out what Pat likes to eat. Hence I am a horrible wife, horrible partner, and truly, should just leave him and let him be with someone who can cook. Ridiculous? A little bit. Reality? Very much so.

After talking to Pat about it, I realized part of my issue is that I can cook - sometimes very well. But I'm overwhelmed by a lot of what's out there now.

For the love of everything good, what the hell is a dutch oven and why does EVERYONE but me own one?!?!? Also, who has time to season them, clean them (since they can't be dishwashered), and care for them while working 50-55 hours a week and getting any semblance of sleep and going out of town every 2 or three weekends? AND! How do people do this and have kids?!?!

I have no idea if I have a broiler - or what I would do with it if I had one. Last time I just tried to turn the oven up to 500ยบ and put the rack at the closest to the top level - and ended up setting off all three fire alarms in the house. THAT was a fun afternoon.

Why does every recipe have to have 800 ingredients? I have to come home from work, cook a meal for a husband who wants to eat RIGHT NOW because otherwise he's convinced he'll starve to death, and apparently, every dish worth making takes 45 minutes of prep and at least an hour and a half of cooking - not to mention dirtying every pan I own.

To solve these issues I decided to start looking up one pan meals. All of them seem to require pantry items that aren't available unless you live in a real town with shops like Trader Joe's or specialty shops with herbs and items we simply don't have here in Ridgecrest. Also, many one pan meals require flour or cornmeal for thickening (which we don't use in this house), cooking chicken then shredding it then cooling it then re-adding it to the pan.

So why I'll only used one pan - I've used one plate and fork/utensil for pre-cooked meat, another pot and utensil for post cooked meat, and a final for holding all the food before plating while I finish a sauce and then all the actual plating items that it's really likely I'd be just as capable of competing on and winning Top Chef as it is I'd be able to pull this stuff off.

So the remedy we're going to try is Pat choosing the meals, and we'll do prepping on the weekends and quick cooking during the week. The prep during the weekend has always worked too well. Pat sees stuff for meals at lunch or when I get home too late to start dinner so he'll eat before 7:30 and decides to either make sandwiches or salads out of it, leaving me with no actual food to cook.

Or I have crazy weeks at work, get home late (after heading in early), and I'm simply too tired to cook so we end up with curry. This is NOT bad, I would live off of curry if Pat would let me!! Unfortunately, Pat is not the "I'll live off hotpockets and curry" kinda guy. Seriously - who wouldn't love to live off hotpockets?!

Anyway - we'll see how this one works, but in the meantime, I'm eschewing all recipe and cooking sites because it's simply too much to handle right now.

Not like I've got anything else going on! LOL