Starting a new series call Tea Time Talk where I rant and rave about something I can’t stop thinking about. If you’re rolling your eyes, don’t worry, there’s a tip or two waiting for you.
Top 3 on Garlic Delight
Here are the top 3 most read posts from this week.
- Silken Tofu vs. Soft Tofu: What’s the Difference?
- 5-Minute Easy Garlic Bread Recipe
- 9 Types Of Tofu You’ve Never Heard Of
What We’re Lovin’ This Week
Since it’s been raining and thunderstormin’ every day in Boulder (hello summer!), we found refuge in a local pho restaurant. Chez Thuy rivals some of the tastier pho joints in (dare I say it?) San Jose. (Though, still doesn’t beat out Pho Kim Long. Yes that’s the real name.)
While I love a hearty beef pho with everything (tripe and all), I’ve been surprised that my fave noodle soup they serve is the Duck Egg Noodle Soup. The best part is how sweet and smoky the soup tastes thanks to copious amounts of charred onions.
Try Out This Recipe
Since temperatures are heating up, you may bristle at the idea of turning on your stove, let alone your oven, to make dinner.
That’s why I recommend the Spicy Mayo Coleslaw. It is a fantastic side to accompany your grilled proteins or on top of a turkey sandwich.
I can’t stop thinking about…
Two weekends ago, I picked up a cookbook called The Nimble Cook (*gasp* now that I moved to Boulder, I have time for the bookstore).
After opening the front cover, I knew this book contained radical ideas.
It whispered heresy to me.
Like recipes are oppressive. Meal plans are unrealistic and unsustainable.
It offered a different way: how to “put ingredients, not recipes, first”.
And eventually, how to cook without recipes at all.
I can’t stop thinking about the freedom in this approach.
It’s intuitive home cooking where you cobble together ingredients from whatever is in the fridge AND successfully make a dish that’s amazing.
Is that what you do in the kitchen?
Or do you follow recipes word for word?
What happens when you follow the recipe strictly, but the dish still flops? Isn’t it frustrating when you dedicate an hour or two and some serious dinero only to feel you wasted your afternoon?
When the recipe fails, it’s not your fault.
It’s the recipe writer’s fault. The person didn’t test enough. They didn’t write clearly enough. They made too many assumptions about your skills, kitchen, and climate. (Now that I live in high altitude, I appreciate that even boiling water is different.)
You don’t need recipes either.
I know it’s scary, at first. Think back to when you learned to draw as a kid. You start out copying to practice your drawing skills. Over time, your skills develop. If you stick with it, you can paint anything in your imagination. Even if it’s not comparable to the Mona Lisa, you’re still proud of your painting. And most importantly, you have fun doing it, right?
Would you like to cook with improvisation to cater to your taste preferences and what’s in the fridge?
We all start with recipes when we’re learning. How do you step away from recipes and start cooking intuitively? Let’s start with baby steps.
Baby step 1: I don’t have a recipe for you this weekend. Instead, I’m challenging you to start tasting your ingredients. Run a taste test experiment like our garlic taste test. Get to know what flavors your ingredients have.
Ask them to tell you their secrets.
Eventually, you’ll get to know flavors so well that you can intuitively combine them.
Your confidence will soar. And then you’ll be one step closer to cooking from your imagination.