Welcome. Check the books, but also just begin. Start with simple things. They can be very, very good without being elaborate at all. Don't let being a rank beginner make you hesitate to try before you think you've learned enough from books. Here's an example to show how little you need to know technically to produce good food. We're making roast chicken thighs and very delicious and useful chicken stock. No special equipment required.
Buy one of those "family packs" of chicken thighs, about five or six pounds, which works out to 10 to 13 thighs. I cut away the extraneous loose fat, but you don't have to do that. Heat your oven to 400F.
Toss all of them in a big bowl with enough olive oil (or any other vegetable oil), enough that all of them are slick with oil. Add salt and toss, enough salt that you can see some on each thigh.
Lay them all out on a baking sheet. If you don't have one, use the broiler pan from the range. Put them in the oven. You can go anything from an hour to an hour and 20 minutes, depending on how dark or crisp you want them. But turn them over after about 40 minutes. They aren't in any danger of drying out until the longest limits of that time range.
Now you have a bunch of very nice chicken thighs. Set aside a few, maybe six of them, for meals. They keep well in just a zipper bag in the refrigerator.
Cut up some carrots, onions, and celery (green tops and all) into smallish pieces, like an inch or two. Cut the remaining thighs into two parts each. (Or not. It works either way, but I like to expose the bones for this.) Put them all into a large pot. Fill the pot with water, and bring to boil. Reduce to simmer for four or five hours. Salt to taste. (You can also include garlic, herbs, etc., as you wish, but it's okay with just the basics.) After it cools, strain through a strainer into another pot. If you want to further reduce fat, put that pot into the refrigerator for a few hours, and lift or skim the fat off the top. (I leave it in. Chicken fat is GOOD.) If you don't want to leave the skin on the thighs while they cook, take it off, and throw it into the stock pot with the cooked thighs. (What's left behind when you strain it is discarded, although the carrots will have retained a lot of their flavor and are now pretty good carrots cooked in chicken stock.
Now you have several cups of wildly better chicken stock than you can buy in the grocery. You can put it two cups at a time into plastic freezer containers and freeze until you want it. Rice becomes fabulous made with stock. Or it becomes a quick chicken noodle or chicken and rice soup. Or any of a hundred other things.
The point is that nothing in all of that requires any special knowledge. You won't get the cooking time wrong, because neither the oven roasting nor the stock simmering times are critical. The chicken thighs can be heated and eaten as they are, or the meat can be removed for chicken salad or cut up for chicken soup with the stock. Or you can coat them in BBQ or hot wings sauce and put them back into the over to heat. (You can do this whole thing with wings, if wings are your thing. Breast, too, if you just must have white meat, but the stock won't be as flavorful.) There are many, many good things that are just as simple to make. And each of them can teach you something. In this case, that chicken, pork, and beef can be easily oven roasted and that stocks are easy and useful.
Oh, and the whole thing above, and the rice, costs under $10. That's three substantial meals or three modest dinners and three lunches and a few more containers of stock left over.
And to save even more, learn to cut up a chicken and use the parts as above. This is one thing where it will be difficult to read a book description and do it. So go to YouTube for one of the many instructional videos:
If you do that, you'll immediately be ahead of most people.