I need to learn how to cook!!

Erinn - posted on 04/24/2009 ( 22 moms have responded )

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I really need help to learn how to cook! I'm 30 years old and TERRIFIED of cooking, but I REALLY wanna learn how so I can cook for my family! I need some easy recipes that even I can't mess up!! Please help me!!

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Antoinette - posted on 04/25/2009

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The best advice I could give you is to purchase some Company's Coming cookbooks. They have the easiest and most common reciepes you could want. Very easy to follow and the simplest ingredients. Another thing you might want to try is ask family or a friend to teach you, or if not that maybe a local cooking class for beginners is always good too. Best wishes and good luck.



p.s. try to enjoy cooking when you start, the more you enjoy it the easier it will be.

Martha - posted on 04/25/2009

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Quoting Dawn:



Quoting Martha:

I recommend Secrets of Feeding a Healthy Family by Ellyn Satter

http://www.amazon.com/Secrets-Feeding-He...

Ellyn explains how to create a cycle menu, how to grocery shop efficiently, and how to include your children in meal preparation. There are explicit recipes and generic recipes so you can improvise with what you have on hand.





Ellyn Satter is also the author of a wonderful book my Aunt (a nutritionist) gave me called "Child of Mine, feeding with love and good sense."  Haven't read the one Martha is recommending, but she is a VERY good, down-to-earth author.





Funny!  My mom, a registered dietitian, game me "Child of Mine"  also.  I needed some help getting started with the whole meal preparation thing, so I bought "Secrets of Feeding a Healthy Family" on my own.

Nicola - posted on 04/25/2009

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I would start with some things you don't even need to cook. basic salad with tuna or chicken and a vinagrette dressing make it look preety practice your knife skills learn what herbs you like in your dressings. then start by cooking some simple stews where all you need to do is cut all your vegetables and meat to the same size and boil it up with a litre or so of stock and some of the herbs you liked. once you feel confident you can make this type of meal you can go on to harder things with more steps just start slow and work your way up and don't get dis heartened if you have a bad day i've been cooking since i was 12 (32 now eek) and managed to burn carrots the other day as i forgot to put water in the pan my 3 year old flooded the bathroom was a bit distracting. When you start i would reccomend making sure you are not going to be disturbed by your kids and once you get a bit of confidence include them so they can learn to cook with you. I also think trying all the ingredients you use when they are raw and learing what how the flavours change when cooked together or seperate can help you if you eventually want to be able to just go ok i've got this, this and this what can i make. rather than following recipes all the time it also helps if you want to modify a recipe because someone doesnt liek one of the ingredients you will know what you can use as an alernative or if the dish will be fine without that ingredient. but most of all dont worry start slow and enjoy it.

Sue - posted on 04/24/2009

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Someone recommended a childrens cookbook. That is a great idea. Not only does it have things your kids would love, but you can add things here and there for your husbands taste. Easy things like buying a can of spaghetti sauce and some spaghetti noodles...these are basics in our family. Lasagna is pretty simple. Cheese, lasagna noodles, spaghetti sauce and meat if you eat meat. Homemade burgers.....depending on how many are in your family and how much each eats, start with 1lb of ground beef, some salt and pepper. You can fry it or grill it. Add your favorite toppings and buns and tah dah. There are lots of little things you can pick up here and there. Try the different recipe sites...foodnetwork.com, recipezaar.com, allrecipes.com, bhg.com. Get past your fears and the rest will come to you. Good luck

Dawn - posted on 04/24/2009

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Quoting Martha:

I recommend Secrets of Feeding a Healthy Family by Ellyn Satter

http://www.amazon.com/Secrets-Feeding-He...

Ellyn explains how to create a cycle menu, how to grocery shop efficiently, and how to include your children in meal preparation. There are explicit recipes and generic recipes so you can improvise with what you have on hand.


Ellyn Satter is also the author of a wonderful book my Aunt (a nutritionist) gave me called "Child of Mine, feeding with love and good sense."  Haven't read the one Martha is recommending, but she is a VERY good, down-to-earth author.

Rachael - posted on 04/24/2009

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I use Foodnetwork.com all the time. Almost everything I have looked up has several different recipes to choose from with reviews and tips on how to make it better. I think for a beginner a Betty Crocker cookbook is the easiest. You can get one that has simple quick fixes kind of like Sandra Lee or the general Betty Crocker binder that is mostly from scratch. I have to replace all of my cookbooks and the first one I got was a Betty Crocker because I loved my old one so much. Good luck and don't give up. Practice and patience and you'll be a pro in no time.

Martha - posted on 04/24/2009

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I recommend Secrets of Feeding a Healthy Family by Ellyn Satter

http://www.amazon.com/Secrets-Feeding-He...

Ellyn explains how to create a cycle menu, how to grocery shop efficiently, and how to include your children in meal preparation. There are explicit recipes and generic recipes so you can improvise with what you have on hand.

Stacey - posted on 04/24/2009

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and oh yeah...don't be afraid of spices! They are your friend in the kitchen and just remember if it tanks the first time, you'll know what there is too much of, and what not to add the next time. For me, it was all about trial and error...to me, it's the best way to learn!

Stacey - posted on 04/24/2009

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I'm with Paige...allrecipes.com is a great place to start. My advice is to look for things you like as well as user reviews...personally I look for reviews with 4 to 5 stars and usually everything turns out great. I don't know if this is something you would like or not but it is very easy and my lil 4 yr. old neighbor loves it and ask for me to cook it all the time! http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Slow-Cooker...

It's so good and fills you up more than you would expect it to! I'm no chef but I would be happy to help you with ideas for specific things, chicken, hamburger meat things ect...just message me! Good luck and remember it's easier than you think it is...after a while you'll be great at it! Just start with simple things and work up from there! GOOD LUCK!

Jinglebones - posted on 04/24/2009

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Try going to www.recipezaar.com - all you have to do is put in what you are looking for i.e. chicken casserole and a gajillion ideas come up - if you want something quick with say can of mushroom soup, voila, or something more fancy as you get more experience. I am a more experienced cook who sometimes just wants different ideas - I love this site. Try it, youll like it!! Cheers, Lisa

Susan - posted on 04/24/2009

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You can't go wrong with foodnetwork.com. They have MANY recipes to chose from. I LOVE to cook and can cook many different things, but it took me many years to get to this point. You can invest in the steam bags from Glad or Ziplock to steam fresh veggies in the microwave. I clean the veggies then place them in the bag with fresh cracked pepper, kosher salt, and some Mrs. Dash (a lifesaver!!). I also add fresh squeezed lime juice for a different flavor. The bags tell you for how long to cook them for and it is pretty accurate. Feel free to contact me if you want some more ideas. I am busy, working single mom who loves great food with shortcuts whenever possible.

Anne - posted on 04/24/2009

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I Erinn, after you have followed Julie's advice there are many good cookbooks. If you life close enough to a library ask the librarian if she could suggest a few cookbooks with easy receipts. 2 of my favorites are The Betty Crocker Cookbook and the Joy of Cooking. Both have easy to read receipts. One of our family favorites when our daughters were younger is Hamburg Gravy. Cook(1 pound) hamburg using 2 forks to help scramble the hamburg, much the same way you would scramble eggs. Use 2 10 -12 ounce cans of cream or mushroom soup add one can of milk. (any type) Add onion powder and garlic powder salt and pepper to taste. About 1-2 teaspoons onion, garlic, and 1 teaspoon salt and pepper. Mix the soup mixture and hamburger. together. At this point you can decide to either serve the hamburg mixture over mashed potatoes,noodles or instant rice. Our family likes it over rice. I have taken so long with my post that I was able to read Paige's post. I 2nd not only her suggestions, and also her belief that you can and will be a good cook. Let us know how you do. Your desire to cook for your family is half the battle. Have fun!!

Anne - posted on 04/24/2009

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I Erinn, after you have followed Julie's advice there are many good cookbooks. If you life close enough to a library ask the librarian if she could suggest a few cookbooks with easy receipts. 2 of my favorites are The Betty Crocker Cookbook and the Joy of Cooking. Both have easy to read receipts. One of our family favorites when our daughters were younger is Hamburg Gravy. Cook(1 pound) hamburg using 2 forks to help scramble the hamburg, much the same way you would scramble eggs. Use 2 10 -12 ounce cans of cream or mushroom soup add one can of milk. (any type) Add onion powder and garlic powder salt and pepper to taste. About 1-2 teaspoons onion, garlic, and 1 teaspoon salt and pepper. Mix the soup mixture and hamburger. together. At this point you can decide to either serve the hamburg mixture over mashed potatoes,noodles or instant rice. Our family likes it over rice. I have taken so long with my post that I was able to read Paige's post. I 2nd not only her suggestions, and also her belief that you can and will be a good cook. Let us know how you do. Your desire to cook for your family is half the battle. Have fun!!

Monica - posted on 04/24/2009

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My grandmother and mother were freeze and can queens. At the end of summer our house used to get so hot from all of the canning that they would do in the kitchen! That was when all the fresh veggies and fruits would 'prepare' for their winter debuts. That's why my mother had time to care for us and the house - she would have half of her wintertime meals in the freezer or can! Ahhh the good ole days

Abbie - posted on 04/24/2009

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If I were you I would invest in a Kids cookbook. They are usually very tasty and simple to follow.

Angie - posted on 04/24/2009

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I call myself a "boxes and cans" cook--using the premade, pre-seasoned foods from major food companies. THEN I try to recreate the meal with fresrh products like pasta, rice or potatoes along with fresh vegetable salads. Over this past winter I also used some of the recipe put-togethers my grandmother might have cooked; I take a cooked meat like chicken or beef and throw it in a pot with vegetables and herbal seasoning for a stew or soup. My husband never knew I was such a good cook because I don't do a lot of it--I'm definitely not a 3-meals-a-day, 7 days a week cook. I often wonder if women prepared that many meals in previous generations, and grew the food as well, what else did they have time for?

Cora - posted on 04/24/2009

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Pick up a cookbook that takes you step by step. once you get good at that then add different things to change the tast. Not be affaed to try, Cooking is easy once you get the hug of it. That is the way I lreaned is with a cookbook and a graet cook my mom.

Paige - posted on 04/24/2009

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The best thing for me is to only cook things that sound tasty to me. Im not going to try my hardest cooking some brocoli casserole because it sounds nasty. But a cheesy potato casserole sounds delicious and it is so simple. GO to allrecipes.com Its such a great site with so many easy recipes. Just type what you want to cook with example:beef, chicken, pasta,. that kinda thing. You dont have to naturally be a good cook you just have to want to make something that tastes good! You'd be surprised how easy it is to find a recipe that sounds good,(with good reviews) and just follow it and i promise it will turn out great. Watch the rachael ray show, during the day, she has great tips and recipes for families. Good luck i have faith that you will be an amazing cook. try to get your husband to help and support you with this too.

Julie - posted on 04/24/2009

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First off, are there any food allergies or aversions(things they don't like.....onions, mushrooms)

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