One of the best ways to start saving money on your food bill is to cook from scratch, or at the very least cook at home rather than eat out-even if you use some convenience foods to do so.
For me this isn’t much of a challenge-I grew up in a household with a mother who was (and still is) a wonderful cook (hey, we are French/Italian/German on that side-it’s mandatory), and all of us kiddos learned how to cook. In my early childhood I don’t remember my dad cooking much but he became interested in Asian cuisine when I was in middle school and took up a lot of Asian cooking. I have lots of happy memories of all of us in the kitchen chopping and cooking together. (Don’t even get me started on “kitchen dancing”)
I realize that this is not true for everyone, and that cooking can seem very intimidating for someone who has never done it. I have one girlfriend (and an Aunt) who will ONLY cook from a recipe. There is no “just throw a little bit of this and that in a pot” for them, and if you make something wonderful and they ask for the recipe and you give them that sort of direction, well-it’s fair to say it drives them insane. (on a side note, my Mother in Law is the same sort of cook as my Mom, which is just another of the many reasons to love her!).
Well, I was trolling the Internet the other day and found a website that seems very useful for a novice cook. It is called StartCooking.com. Of particular interest is the section of recipes (mouse over the recipe tab along the top) in the blog, to include Video recipes (boxed in orange) that clearly go through the steps of the recipes. It is like watching Food TV, but with the ability to pause and repeat!
For each video there are also on the left hand side a menu-specifically cross referenced to that particular recipe-of “related tips and techniques”. So if the recipe says you have to separate an egg, and you aren’t sure how to do that, there is a link provided to help you out.
Some of the video recipes that a novice might be particularly interested in:
Hope this helps inspire and demystify the cooking process for some of you who have been nervous about taking the plunge into anything more complicated than hot dogs or macaroni and cheese!