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-   -   Struggling newbie (http://www.discusscooking.com/forums/f6/struggling-newbie-91118.html)

abu3issa 10-05-2014 04:45 AM

Struggling newbie
 
Hi all, My name is Ahmed and I'm from Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
I've decided to really make a change in my life, and be actually healthy instead of my silly theoretical knowledge. Truth is, I don't know where to begin.

So, I will list some facts about myself, and hopefully you guys would point me where to start. I would appreciate ANY help whatsoever.
* I don't know how to cook anything at all.
* I'm always outside of home, I wake up around 5 am and leave, and don't come back home until 10 pm.
* There's no kitchen at work, the only cooking tool available for me for lunch and breakfast is a microwave.
* Sometimes, I'm only free one morning a week (usually no free days, but i'm aiming to fix that -_-")

So... ^_^" any ideas??

Addie 10-05-2014 08:45 AM

First off, welcome to DC. You will be getting a lot of advice here. Tell us what foods you can eat and like for a starter. :angel:

abu3issa 10-05-2014 10:37 AM

Thanks Addie. To be honest I never thought about it much. I'm a Muslim so anything alcoholic or contains ham or pork is out of the equation entirely. I'm not a big fan of beans but I know I should be an adult about it :confused: oh and I never liked beetroot.
I've honestly neve gave it much thought ever.

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Andy M. 10-05-2014 10:40 AM

How do you get your meals with the schedule you described? If you're never home, how do you expect to cook or even learn to cook?

abu3issa 10-05-2014 10:51 AM

Well, normally I just eat from the company's cafeteria. I want to change that. Like for example, prepare some salad on the weekend and take some everyday? Or prepare meals I can cook with the microwave later?

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abu3issa 10-05-2014 12:57 PM

Oh, let's just pretend, for learning sake, I have an empty kitchen, as if I have zero tools. I have an oven, and many other stuff but I think I really need to start shopping. So let's just pretend I'm shopping for my first kitchen equipment

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Stock Pot 10-05-2014 01:10 PM

Master basic skills
 
Particularly, master basic knife skills. Once you can easily and quickly peel and slice or mince an onion, mince garlic, dice a potato, etc. everything becomes easier. Learn how to hold the food properly so you won't accidentally cut your hand, too (bear claw grip with all your fingers and thumb curled inwards). Start with recipes that use a minimal number of ingredients. And practice "mise en place"- do all your prep work first so everything is ready to add at the proper time. Use a good, sharp knife and always keep it sharp.

Josie1945 10-05-2014 01:40 PM

Hi Ahmed
Welcome to DC.

Josie

Addie 10-05-2014 01:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Stock Pot (Post 1391576)
Particularly, master basic knife skills. Once you can easily and quickly peel and slice or mince an onion, mince garlic, dice a potato, etc. everything becomes easier. Learn how to hold the food properly so you won't accidentally cut your hand, too (bear claw grip with all your fingers and thumb curled inwards). Start with recipes that use a minimal number of ingredients. And practice "mise en place"- do all your prep work first so everything is ready to add at the proper time. Use a good, sharp knife and always keep it sharp.

Excellent advice. And if you need visual, then there are plenty of Youtube video demos for all of the above. :angel:

mmyap 10-05-2014 02:01 PM

Hi Ahmed, welcome. I would suggest you invest in a good quality dutch oven (big, sturdy pot) that can be used on the stove or in your oven. It will lend itself to many different types of recipes. You can make big pots of food and freeze portions for quick meals later.

You could make a large pot of lamb (or whatever you like) stew with veg and eat off that for days. Freeze some.

Grain salads (couscous or quinoa) with roasted vegetables would be a healthy and nutritious meal.

Zagut 10-05-2014 06:22 PM

Start with a good head cheese for the base of a sandwich and add what you like for condiments. Heated in a microwave they can be tasty.

menumaker 10-06-2014 05:32 AM

Welcome Armed,
Could you possibly buy an electric slow cooking pot? Look online.You should find this excellent for cooking all kinds of meals while you are out and usually comes with a basic cook book to get you started. You could prepare all kinds of vegetable dishes that once cooked could be stored for later in the week that include ingredients such as chickpeas, lentils, soups (for hot or cold ) and chicken or lamb dishes. They are easy to use as well

GotGarlic 10-06-2014 09:44 AM

Hi and welcome to Discuss Cooking :smile:

Here's a good, basic list of items needed to outfit a new kitchen: http://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-set-...-kitchn-208432

This is a pretty handy method for making salads for the week: Put them in jars: http://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-pack...-kitchn-192174

And here are several recipes that show you the variety of salads you can make. Just choose the ingredient combinations that appeal to you: http://villagegreennetwork.com/17-ma...r-salad-ideas/

If you can't get canning jars there, any pint container with a lid will work; taller ones work better because they will keep the more delicate ingredients out of the dressing so they won't get soggy. You can combine a salad with soup or stew, as others have suggested, and have some bread to soak up the last of the dressing :smile: Hope this helps.

Alix 10-06-2014 10:32 AM

Ahmed, it sounds like time is a precious commodity for you right now. Perhaps instead of exhausting yourself in the kitchen you can go buy some lovely dried fruit and nuts and make yourself small containers of trail mix. You'll get the nutrition you need without spending so much in the cafeteria. Adding in some nice cheese and some fresh bread is easy and quick.

Don't bother with the cooking until you have some more time on your hands. Its lovely to learn, and to prepare meals for yourself, but you REALLY don't have the time right now.


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