"Discover Cooking, Discuss Life."

Go Back   Discuss Cooking - Cooking Forums > The Back Porch > Off Topic Discussions
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
 
Old 12-28-2007, 04:29 PM   #11
Master Chef
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Metro New York
Posts: 8,764
Send a message via Yahoo to ChefJune
Quote:
I also feel like I need suggestions from dh but he doesn't want to give them to me. He's no help at all.
There's an up-side to that... He has no room to complain if you choose something he doesn't like and he hasn't told you that!

It also gives you more room to be creative. If he gave you a list of "don'ts" or "do's" it might affect how you put recipes together. You probably know pretty well what he DOES like, and what he hates, so I'd guess you'll take that knowledge with you as you search. But do get Pam's book, it may solve all your problems!
__________________

__________________
Wine is the food that completes the meal.
ChefJune is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2007, 07:10 PM   #12
Executive Chef
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Perth, Western Australia
Posts: 3,270
I found that by looking at lots of recipes, you can break them down into components or styles, and then most are just variations on a theme. Cooking theory becomes a lot easier then - may not help your technique but it does help your understanding of what you are doing. The other thing is to learn what flavours work together and that is personal preference as much as classic pairings.

I start by choosing my basic ingredient, usually the carbohydrate source, and then add to it with say the veges that need to be used up or are super fresh or the protein source. From that I then choose the style that I want to cook. That's pretty much it in a very basic form.

With your DH, I know what you mean but I don't have to deal with that situation every day - only when my mum comes to visit!! LOL She always says "anything is fine" but I know that "anything" is far from fine!! And because she is my mum, not only do I want to make her something she will like, but I will know when she doesn't like it because I know her well enough to recognise the signs, even if she says she likes it. It is very frustrating. Sometimes you just have to ignore the preferences of others and just go for it and if they don't like it, well they can always have a sandwich!

I also get some of my inspiration from restaurant menus and I don't mean by eating out (although it does help). With my role on another forum site, I spend a lot of time reading diners restaurant reviews and I will often check out an online menu to see the restaurant's description of the dish the diner ate. You can get some great inspiration from those menus.

And as was said by Miniman (I think - on the previous page), Ready Steady Cook can be inspiring, although the UK version is better than ours. If you don't have access to it where you are, there are some episodes on YouTube.
__________________

__________________
Too many restaurants, not enough time...
Bilby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2007, 07:59 PM   #13
Master Chef
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Texas
Posts: 5,296
I say be creative! kinda like buckytom said, you may have a few stinkers along the way, but hey, you gave it a try and you learned. Plus, you got us to help you out, just tell us what you got and we can give you some ideas.

I agree, DH needs to give you some idea what he is in the mood for! Otherwise, I don't want to hear you complaining!!
__________________
sattie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2007, 08:20 PM   #14
Master Chef
 
Constance's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Southern Illiniois
Posts: 8,175
DH says I can make a meal out of nothing. I think it comes with having been poor. I have a well-stocked pantry now, which makes it a lot easier.
__________________
We get by with a little help from our friends
Constance is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2007, 08:53 PM   #15
Executive Chef
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Location: Raton,NM, USA
Posts: 4,573
Start simple if you have some pasta you can whip up a pasta dish with the odds and ends you have another one is stir fry keep rice on hand.Another idea is to think out side of the box if its dinner it could be omelets and all the other breakfast fare or the omelet with salad and garlic bread.Its really just looking at what you have to see what you can make.I would keep certain staples on hand like rice,pasta.canned mushrooms,roasted red peppers,canned artichokes,pesto,beans,olives,garlic,soy sauce,Flour tortillas and frozen vegies,shrimp and french bread etc in freezer.Some cheeses etc if you have a few good staples you can make a meal much easier with what you already have in the fridge. Another idea is keep some of your leftovers in the freezer like spaghetti sauce,chicken etc.You could make an omelet and cover it with spaghetti sauce and parmesan.Just try to imagine what goes together and do it.I have had some miserable failures and some masterpieces.
Quesadillas can be made with all kinds of leftovers.The sky is the limit.
__________________
jpmcgrew is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-28-2007, 09:14 PM   #16
Sous Chef
 
jeninga75's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Augusta, Ga
Posts: 721
I love to improvise. Like many others have mentioned, pasta or rice is cheap and handy to have around. Add a meat... ground beef or turkey and a sauce... tomato or alfredo. Some canned veggies... I keep around sweet corn, canned tomatos and greenbeans as well as beans. I like pintos and northern white because they fit in with pretty much anything. I also have a can of "stir-fry" veggies for a quick stir fry with some chicken, steak or shrimp. A few canned soups such as cream of mushroom, chicken, celery, et. always makes for a quick sauce. I also keep around some easy instant mashed taters and stuffing. Veggie stock because it goes with anything. Onions and garlic are a must as they make anything better. Maybe some cheese... shredded chedder, mozzarella, or maybe an Italian mix. Spices are something I'm still learning about.

I've made some, let's just say, interesting concoctions... some I've handed over to the dog nothing wrong with that. Improv in cooking is a learning experience so don't be afraid to just go with what you might be a good combination. And don't get discouraged if it doesn't come out like you expected.
__________________
If you ate pasta and antipasto, would you still be hungry? ~Author Unknown
jeninga75 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-29-2007, 06:41 AM   #17
Executive Chef
 
Join Date: Nov 2004
Location: USA,Florida
Posts: 3,834
I keep well stocked pantry and freezers, but sometimes I have almost a love/hate relationship with cooking. Sometimes ideas just are abundant in my head and sometimes I look at everything and think "I can't stand to cook tonight". Between Thanksgiving and Christmas enjoyed cooking so much, but since I've been in a real slump. I'm tired of cooking and tired of eating. I've not even been able to think of something I'd enjoy. I know this will pass, but I'd much rather stay on an even keel with my cooking. I hope that comes soon.
__________________
Be an organ donor; give your heart to Jesus.
Exercise daily; walk with the Lord.
licia is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-29-2007, 06:49 AM   #18
Executive Chef
 
YT2095's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Just left of Europe and down a bit.
Posts: 3,875
Send a message via MSN to YT2095
Quote:
Originally Posted by corazon View Post
Are you good at improvising meals?
only about 364 days of the year
__________________
So long and Thanks for all the Fish ;)

YT2095 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-29-2007, 07:44 AM   #19
Master Chef
 
cara's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: Hannover, Germany
Posts: 5,763
YT, who's doing the cooking on that one day? ;)

I never cook as the recipe sais... almost everytimes there is something I don't like, I don't have or I think something else would fit great..
It's no problem to search through the fridge and freezer and boards and create something...
but these meals are almost unique, as I can't remember what I did afterwards...
__________________
LiGruess cara ~~~ Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, chocolate in one hand, wine in the other, totally worn out and screaming "WOO HOO what a ride!"
cara is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-29-2007, 07:53 AM   #20
Executive Chef
 
YT2095's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Just left of Europe and down a bit.
Posts: 3,875
Send a message via MSN to YT2095
me, it`s Christmas dinner and there`s little room for change.
__________________

__________________
So long and Thanks for all the Fish ;)

YT2095 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



» Discuss Cooking on Facebook

Our Communities

Our communities encompass many different hobbies and interests, but each one is built on friendly, intelligent membership.

» More about our Communities

Automotive Communities

Our Automotive communities encompass many different makes and models. From U.S. domestics to European Saloons.

» More about our Automotive Communities

Marine Communities

Our Marine websites focus on Cruising and Sailing Vessels, including forums and the largest cruising Wiki project on the web today.

» More about our Marine Communities


Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:03 PM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 4
Copyright ©2000 - 2016, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.