Food! We love it, we hate it, we can be addicted to it. Food can be simple or it can be extravagant.
Roasting a fine cut of beef to perfection or creating a salad that tastes every bit as good as it looks is an art. And the creative cook, like any artist or craftsman, can be no better than the basic techniques she has mastered.
The abc's of cooking can be very simple. It is not always the cook or the equipment used, but the basic food ingredients in the final product. Fresh food is always better, not only nutritionally, but it just seems to taste better. But, again, there is nothing wrong with using canned or frozen foods in a recipe when fresh is not available.
Good buying habits are just as important as good cooking - in fact, they go hand in hand because ingredients are an important part of the success of every recipe. You should always have staples, such as flour, sugar, shortening, salt and pepper, coffee, tea, cocoa powder, cereals, macaroni, spaghetti and salad dressings on hand. Also, you should have on hand seasonings such as cinnamon, nutmeg, garlic, chili powder, bouillon cubes, Worcestershire sauce and several flavors of cheese. Keeping these foods on hand in your kitchen will ensure that you can cook up most any recipe in minutes.
You should also keep an emergency shelf of food items in your kitchen. Things such as canned meats, tuna, soups, tomatoes, vegetables, fruits, and canned milk should always be in your cabinet. Also keep minced onions, biscuit mix, pancake mix, instant beverages, and non-fat dry milk ready to grab at a moments notice.
Food and cooking should not be a chore or a burden, it should be fun. Food should make you happy and with a few simple steps to ensure that you have all the right foods available, your kitchen will be a joy to be in.
If you are in need of some ideas for what vegetable will go nicely with what meat, here is a list that I find very helpful:
Beef - broccoli, cabbaage, cauliflower, celery, green beans, tomatoes, beets, mushrooms, eggplant, white turnips, parsnips, and kohlrabi.
Chicken - corn, lima beans, peas, and sweet potatoes.
Fish - tomatoes, peas, green beans, asparagu, cucumbers, and celery.
Ham - asparagu, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, celery, green beans, cabbage, cauliflower, spinach and other greens.
You get the idea. Just use your imagination, and your own food tastes to find what combinations you like. Just remember that food is to be enjoyed and there is no right or wrong when choosing delicious foods to eat.