Getting used to cooking

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Posts

  • DjeetDjeet Registered User regular
    edited November 2016
    If you plan to do long unattended cooks with a slow cooker I'd recommend doing long cooks while you're there to check up on it to see how your cooker operates. I've had cookers where the "warm" setting is hot enough to simmer off moisture, and if the moisture starts to cook off and you're not there to reduce the heat or turn it off, then your food will dry up, then burn, and could become a fire hazard.

    The only 6-8 hour cooks unattended cooks I've been happy with are beans (both from dry and also soaked), chili, and large fatty cuts of meat with lots of connective tissue (pork butt/shoulder, beef short rib, fatty chuck roast). Vegetables cooked that long will become pretty much mush (though in a stew that would thicken the gravy). If you want to make some kind of stew with vegetables that have some tooth to them still you'll want to put them in mid-cook. Fresh herbs you'll also want to put in towards the end (20-30 minutes before it's done) or you'll cook out their flavor.

    For lean cuts of meat (pork tenderloin or poultry breast) a 6-8 hour cook will make them into cardboard, but they can still be cooked in a slow cooker at a shorter cook or if you monitor them a bit.

    The slow cookers I've used have all been of the off/low/hi or off/warm/low/high variety, so you don't have a great deal of temperature control. If you get one that has finer temp control and has good temp accuracy then you can probably mind it less and have more predictable results. Still a good idea to check in on the first several slow cooks you do so you get an idea of how how it gets on each temp setting.

    I wouldn't worry too much about knife skills for slow cooking. Typically you're not going to want to chop any vegetables finer than a rough chop or they will overcook. Really hearty root vegetables like yams/sweet potatoes can stand up to pretty long cooks though.

    Djeet on
  • KyouguKyougu Registered User regular
    Man, annoying enough the week I decided to start on this grand experiment I been working nothing but 12 hour shifts. Hopefully this weekend I can pick out some easiesh recipes for the start of next week.

  • BotznoyBotznoy Registered User regular
    My partner and I have had some success of 'skillet' recipes. Despite the name they are recipes that are essentially all done in one frying pan. They're usually pretty easy to do if you're coming home from work.

    IZF2byN.jpg

    Want to play co-op games? Feel free to hit me up!
  • CelestialBadgerCelestialBadger Registered User regular
    Kyougu wrote: »
    Man, annoying enough the week I decided to start on this grand experiment I been working nothing but 12 hour shifts. Hopefully this weekend I can pick out some easiesh recipes for the start of next week.

    What food do you like?

  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    Kyougu wrote: »
    Man, annoying enough the week I decided to start on this grand experiment I been working nothing but 12 hour shifts. Hopefully this weekend I can pick out some easiesh recipes for the start of next week.

    Cooking is just like exercising or any other life behavior. You will never get there if you wait for a convenient time when it feels great to do it and it doesn't negatively impact you. You're going to be sacrificing free time in exchange for better health. So, just start cooking now. Stop ordering out and start cooking. You will be grumpy about sacrificing free time. But just keep cooking until cooking your own food is the routine, and then it's just normal life.

    What is this I don't even.
  • V1mV1m Registered User regular

    Another thing of importance if it hasn't been mentioned is that prep work, or at least the time required for it, is substantially reduced if you have good tools.

    Cannot over-agree with this. After months of prevarication, I finally got off my ass and bought a new knife sharpener recently, and holy shit the difference.

    Incidentally, it's perfectly acceptable to get one of those ceramic wheel knife sharpeners if your knives are cheapo ones anyway. The main difference between a cheap knife and an expensive one is that the expensive one will hold an edge for longer, but when sharpening literally takes 15 seconds, who really cares?

  • SimpsoniaSimpsonia Registered User regular
    V1m wrote: »

    Another thing of importance if it hasn't been mentioned is that prep work, or at least the time required for it, is substantially reduced if you have good tools.

    Cannot over-agree with this. After months of prevarication, I finally got off my ass and bought a new knife sharpener recently, and holy shit the difference.

    Incidentally, it's perfectly acceptable to get one of those ceramic wheel knife sharpeners if your knives are cheapo ones anyway. The main difference between a cheap knife and an expensive one is that the expensive one will hold an edge for longer, but when sharpening literally takes 15 seconds, who really cares?

    Actually one of the other big differences is in how much metal the cheapo ones take off with each pass. If you use them a lot, and sharpen them a lot, they can significantly affect the lifespan of knives, which is why you don't want to use them on expensive knives.

  • CelestialBadgerCelestialBadger Registered User regular
    I chop vegetables with old steak knives. *stands back waiting for the screams of despair*

    Thinking of asking for a proper knife this Christmas.

    Seriously, don't obsess over getting the best tools until you have got the skills to use them. The best implements in the world generally hang on the kitchen walls of rich people who never cook. I only buy kitchen stuff when there are recipes I literally cannot do without them, because my kitchen is tiny.

  • IrukaIruka Registered User, Moderator mod
    Cutting things with a bad knife is a bit of a safety issue. A blunt/unstable knife is harder to control, you will struggle to position it correctly and it creates more dangerous scenarios. You dont have to spend a ton on knives, I have a hand me down set, and an electric sharpener. I would recommend focusing on one knife and not going crazy. A chefs knife and a paring knife can do most jobs.

    NightDragonbowenForbe!SatanIsMyMotorBloodySlothSoggybiscuitan_altMichaelLC
  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    edited December 2016
    I chop vegetables with old steak knives. *stands back waiting for the screams of despair*

    Thinking of asking for a proper knife this Christmas.

    Seriously, don't obsess over getting the best tools until you have got the skills to use them. The best implements in the world generally hang on the kitchen walls of rich people who never cook. I only buy kitchen stuff when there are recipes I literally cannot do without them, because my kitchen is tiny.

    Eh... a good chef's knife is so insanely much better for chopping vegetables. I know it seems silly, but god it's so much better. Even I can see the difference, and I incompetent in the kitchen. Just get ONE chef's knife.

    Darkewolfe on
    What is this I don't even.
  • CelestialBadgerCelestialBadger Registered User regular
    edited December 2016
    Iruka wrote: »
    Cutting things with a bad knife is a bit of a safety issue. A blunt/unstable knife is harder to control, you will struggle to position it correctly and it creates more dangerous scenarios. You dont have to spend a ton on knives, I have a hand me down set, and an electric sharpener. I would recommend focusing on one knife and not going crazy. A chefs knife and a paring knife can do most jobs.

    Oddly enough, clumsy old me has cut my hands on my sharp knives many times but never with my blunt old cheap steak knives I use for chopping vegetables. That's one reason why I use them! Meat can't be cut with blunt knives however. But clumsy old me uses scissors :)

    I guess what I'm saying, is, just throw yourself into cooking. Most good home cooks technically suck at cooking. I get a lot of praise for my cooking and I assume it is sincere, but I do everything "wrong" and realizing that is OK frees you up to be a good home cook. The "proper cook" things to worry about are things like raw meat storage (don't let it drip onto foods that will be eaten raw) rather than exactly how to julienne.

    CelestialBadger on
  • VishNubVishNub Registered User regular
    If you fuck up chopping veg, just call it rustic.

    ElvenshaedarkmayoDarkewolfetinwhiskersimdointhisMichaelLC
  • SimpsoniaSimpsonia Registered User regular
    edited December 2016
    Iruka wrote: »
    Cutting things with a bad knife is a bit of a safety issue. A blunt/unstable knife is harder to control, you will struggle to position it correctly and it creates more dangerous scenarios. You dont have to spend a ton on knives, I have a hand me down set, and an electric sharpener. I would recommend focusing on one knife and not going crazy. A chefs knife and a paring knife can do most jobs.

    Oddly enough, clumsy old me has cut my hands on my sharp knives many times but never with my blunt old cheap steak knives I use for chopping vegetables. That's one reason why I use them! Meat can't be cut with blunt knives however. But clumsy old me uses scissors :)

    I guess what I'm saying, is, just throw yourself into cooking. Most good home cooks technically suck at cooking. I get a lot of praise for my cooking and I assume it is sincere, but I do everything "wrong" and realizing that is OK frees you up to be a good home cook. The "proper cook" things to worry about are things like raw meat storage (don't let it drip onto foods that will be eaten raw) rather than exactly how to julienne.

    This is why most novices fear sharp knives. They are only used to muscling around with dull knives, and handle a sharp knife the same way. Once you get used to how little pressure you actually need to use with a proper sharp knife, they actually become much safer.

    Simpsonia on
    NightDragonDaenrisElvenshae
  • Beef AvengerBeef Avenger Registered User regular
    Yeah if you're practicing proper knife safety than you should only be at risk if the knife slips, which it's far less likely to do when sharp

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  • NightDragonNightDragon 6th Grade Username Registered User regular
    Going to just throw in my recommendation for Victorinox knives. I've been working with a set of four that I bought off of Amazon a few years back, and they're excellent. They're really good quality for the price. I also got a set of steak knives from them and they're also sooo much better than the cheap set I had before from IKEA (go figure). Even if you just get yourself a really good chef's knife and paring knife, that will only set you back $30-50 and should last you a long while.

  • BotznoyBotznoy Registered User regular
    I got my partner a good ceramic bladed chefs knife and it is horrifyingly sharp

    IZF2byN.jpg

    Want to play co-op games? Feel free to hit me up!
    Elvenshae
  • PaladinPaladin Registered User regular
    My mom is a pro dgaf cook and uses a food processor; don't think she's used a knife for anything but peeling apples and cutting off stalks

    If you get one get a short one with a huge removable blade. No point saving time cutting if you have to spend more cleaning

    Really the dgaf attitude to cooking is what'll keep you from giving up if you don't have chef DNA. Make stuff, don't care, tastes good

    Marty: The future, it's where you're going?
    Doc: That's right, twenty five years into the future. I've always dreamed on seeing the future, looking beyond my years, seeing the progress of mankind. I'll also be able to see who wins the next twenty-five world series.
    CelestialBadger
  • DjeetDjeet Registered User regular
    edited December 2016
    Food processors are great. I use them to break down vegetables that would take longer to cook down in a sauce if you did not reduce them to shreds or pulp first. They don't replace a chef's knife though.

    If you want to cut up vegetables into pieces (not a julienne, chiffonade, brunoise, or whatever fancypants cut) larger than shreds or pulp, well you can't do that with a food processor and you'll need a knife.

    If you don't want to order online or go to a restaurant supply store (where you can get very usable tools at a reasonable price), then a $10-15 chefs knife you get at the grocery store will do you fine until you decide want something better.

    Djeet on
    CelestialBadgerNightDragonElvenshae
  • azith28azith28 Registered User regular
    Kyougu wrote: »
    I recently realized that I gained some of the weight I was able to take off last year and gone back to the weight I been for the past few couple of years.

    After a bit of introspection I realized its all because of my diet. Working out is no problem, and even making reasonable choices when eating I can be okay at, but I eat so much processed food/fast food out of laziness and convenience.

    It also doesn't help that I had a financial rough patch a year or two ago where I was just buying the cheapest food possible. Now I'm fine, but I think I just got in the habit of buying stuff like frozen chicken strips and fries, or canned tuna that I'll add mayo and some rice to.

    So yeah, any tips?

    Something that is good for losing weight, and can be adjusted in the amount of flavor/calories is a simple Cabbage / vegtable / beef soup.

    http://www.cabbagesoupdiet.recipes/cabbage-soup-recipe/

    At its most basic, its actually a negative calorie food because it takes your body more calories to digest than then calories you get from it.
    It's basically a weak soup made with cabbage, onions, tomatoes, celery, carrots, garlic, and peppers... the peppers and a good amount of black pepper give it a spicy taste but its mostly suggested to people who need to lose weight very quickly for like heart surgery. at this level its a mayo clinic diet that you can eat as much of the soup as you want to (cause of the negative calories), and if you do it for a week you can lose 10 lbs. i

    However, your not in dire straits. So you can take the same recipe, and add a few things to make it more fufilling and flavorful while still being low cal.
    Use a beef stock / boullion cubes, add in a can of green peas, a can of corn, a few chopped up potatoes.

    You can even go further without going high cal by brasing some stew beef and putting them in the soup while its cooking to give yourself a nice veggie/beef soup but you cant eat as much of it as you want at this stage.


    Stercus, Stercus, Stercus, Morituri Sum
  • SoggybiscuitSoggybiscuit At the edge of spacetime lies a path with no end.Registered User regular
    As for knives, as most people have mentioned here, the Victorinox 8 Inch Fibrox Pro Chef’s Knife is a great first chef's knife. The paring knife is good as well! This looks like a good cheap first time wood cutting board, and this looks like a nice plastic one.

    I personally do not recommend an electric sharpener - learn to hone the blade with a honing steel to keep the edge. I've got Shun Heavy Chef's Knife that is still as sharp today as when I bought it because I hone it religiously every 2-3 meals and don't use it where it's not supposed to be used. The great part about honing is it doesn't require a lot force to do, and you are really only interested in maintaining the edge you have. This is a Victorinox honing steel. Leave the sharpening to the professionals, though with these knives it's probably cheaper just to buy new ones.

    The other pieces of the puzzle:

    Cooking Utensils

    Get something like this set and extra spatulas to start with. Go for one piece utensils when possible since the are significantly more hygienic. Don't use metal utensils on the dutch oven or any non-stick pan, though they are fine in stainless pans.

    Cookware:

    I'm separating this into two sections, "You need this now" and "Purchase as you get better"

    You need this now:

    Electric Skillets - incredibly versatile, you can easily do one pan dishes in these. They are great for eggs and bacon though not so good for omelets. They are usually non-stick, so use wood, silicone, or plastic cooking utensils. They are usually dishwasher safe as well. Get one of these guys, don't spend more than $30. Something like this Proctor Silex is good to start with.

    Dutch Oven - Right now, this time of year especially, you can get ~6 quart dutch ovens for about $40 in many places. DO THIS. These are extremely versatile cooking implements, and you can do a whole host of dishes in them like stews, soups, roasts, braising, etc. They work well for low and slow cooking like a crock pot, with the added advantage that you can do browning of meat/veggies in them to build a fond ('foundation') for your meal. This Lodge 6 quart dutch oven goes on sale all the time, though it is more expensive right now. You can get a tramonita version at Sam's Club for about $40 right now though.

    Sauce pan - Get a 3 quart sauce pan or two. Non-stick is okay. Great for reducing sauces and making side vegetables (like corn or green beans, for example).

    Purchase as you get better (in this order)

    Saute pan - Get a 3 quart and ~6 quart when you can, though if you had to pick, get the 6 quart first. Make sure the lid is oven safe, as many times when I'm cooking I pop the whole thing in the oven to finish a meal. Cuisinart makes a 3.5 and 5.5 quart pan, and they are reasonably priced (~$50). Not critical when you first start, but definitely something you want down the line. Avoid non-stick pans here, as they are a pox upon the earth.

    Stock pot - Get a 8 quart and 12 quart when you can, non-stick is okay, but for one pot dishes regular stainless is preferred. If you have to choose, get the 8 quart first since it will be more versatile of the two to start with. You can use a dutch oven as a pseudo stock pot, but it isn't preferred.

    Skillets - Get an 8 inch and 12 inch when you can, though if you had to pick, get the 12 inch first. Versatile pans that can be used for quite a few different meals, great for meals where food needs to be flipped constantly. Since a non-stick electric skillet is the first pan you should buy, get a stainless pan here, though if you want to avoid an electric skillet a non-stick pan here is OK (get a stainless one though, seriously).

    Cast-iron skillet - Get one after you have been cooking for a bit, and learn the proper techniques of care. Make the best damn cornbread you will ever have. Seriously.

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  • CelestialBadgerCelestialBadger Registered User regular
    My firm advice for buying utensils as a newbie cook is to buy no more than a piece a week as you discover you absolutely cannot live without it. Assuming you already have the basics like a saucepan, frying pan, baking tray, and knife. The OP sounds like a reluctant cook rather than a complete beginner so he probably already has those things.

    schussElvenshae
  • SimpsoniaSimpsonia Registered User regular
    edited December 2016
    As for knives, as most people have mentioned here, the Victorinox 8 Inch Fibrox Pro Chef’s Knife is a great first chef's knife. The paring knife is good as well! This looks like a good cheap first time wood cutting board, and this looks like a nice plastic one.

    I personally do not recommend an electric sharpener - learn to hone the blade with a honing steel to keep the edge. I've got Shun Heavy Chef's Knife that is still as sharp today as when I bought it because I hone it religiously every 2-3 meals and don't use it where it's not supposed to be used. The great part about honing is it doesn't require a lot force to do, and you are really only interested in maintaining the edge you have. This is a Victorinox honing steel. Leave the sharpening to the professionals, though with these knives it's probably cheaper just to buy new ones.

    The other pieces of the puzzle:

    Cooking Utensils

    Get something like this set and extra spatulas to start with. Go for one piece utensils when possible since the are significantly more hygienic. Don't use metal utensils on the dutch oven or any non-stick pan, though they are fine in stainless pans.

    Cookware:

    I'm separating this into two sections, "You need this now" and "Purchase as you get better"

    You need this now:

    Electric Skillets - incredibly versatile, you can easily do one pan dishes in these. They are great for eggs and bacon though not so good for omelets. They are usually non-stick, so use wood, silicone, or plastic cooking utensils. They are usually dishwasher safe as well. Get one of these guys, don't spend more than $30. Something like this Proctor Silex is good to start with.

    Dutch Oven - Right now, this time of year especially, you can get ~6 quart dutch ovens for about $40 in many places. DO THIS. These are extremely versatile cooking implements, and you can do a whole host of dishes in them like stews, soups, roasts, braising, etc. They work well for low and slow cooking like a crock pot, with the added advantage that you can do browning of meat/veggies in them to build a fond ('foundation') for your meal. This Lodge 6 quart dutch oven goes on sale all the time, though it is more expensive right now. You can get a tramonita version at Sam's Club for about $40 right now though.

    Sauce pan - Get a 3 quart sauce pan or two. Non-stick is okay. Great for reducing sauces and making side vegetables (like corn or green beans, for example).

    Purchase as you get better (in this order)

    Saute pan - Get a 3 quart and ~6 quart when you can, though if you had to pick, get the 6 quart first. Make sure the lid is oven safe, as many times when I'm cooking I pop the whole thing in the oven to finish a meal. Cuisinart makes a 3.5 and 5.5 quart pan, and they are reasonably priced (~$50). Not critical when you first start, but definitely something you want down the line. Avoid non-stick pans here, as they are a pox upon the earth.

    Stock pot - Get a 8 quart and 12 quart when you can, non-stick is okay, but for one pot dishes regular stainless is preferred. If you have to choose, get the 8 quart first since it will be more versatile of the two to start with. You can use a dutch oven as a pseudo stock pot, but it isn't preferred.

    Skillets - Get an 8 inch and 12 inch when you can, though if you had to pick, get the 12 inch first. Versatile pans that can be used for quite a few different meals, great for meals where food needs to be flipped constantly. Since a non-stick electric skillet is the first pan you should buy, get a stainless pan here, though if you want to avoid an electric skillet a non-stick pan here is OK (get a stainless one though, seriously).

    Cast-iron skillet - Get one after you have been cooking for a bit, and learn the proper techniques of care. Make the best damn cornbread you will ever have. Seriously.

    I'll be honest, I disagree with a fair bit of the advice in here. First, I've never been a fan of pairing knives, you can use a basic 8" chef's knife for every kitchen task. Further, learning to use the chef's knife for more delicate work such as tomatoes will increase your knife skills at a much greater pace.

    Second, electric skillets are an abomination. They are for dorm rooms and backwoods cabins, or anywhere else that does not have a functioning stovetop. They compromise in every aspect and do nothing well. If you have a functioning stove, just buy one 10-12" TFal Pro non-stick skillet for eggs and other sticky things, and either a 12" stainless steel or cast iron skillet (or even better a good french carbon steel skillet). These will be the only skillets you would need for a long time. An electric skillet would only serve to become a waste of counter/storage space.

    You can also forgo the dutch oven if you just get a good 6-8QT stainless steel stock pot (with a good thick bottom). Anything you can do in the dutch oven, you can do 95% as well in a good steel stock pot. I have a Le Creuset Dutch oven, I love it, and use it all the time, but for a beginner, get something that will be much more useful in all aspects of cooking. You will quickly get tired of lugging out a 20lb dutch oven every time you want to cook a tomato sauce or cook a lot of rice.

    Simpsonia on
    DarkewolfeTychoCelchuuuschussan_altBlameless Cleric
  • MegaMan001MegaMan001 CRNA Rochester, MNRegistered User regular
    Wanted to second 'Thug Kitchen' book series. I don't really get the angle of the writing, but it's simple and doesn't require you to take a specialty food hunting trip to Whole Foods or something for their recipes like a lot of books.

    I am in the business of saving lives.
    imdointhis
  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    Simpsonia wrote: »
    As for knives, as most people have mentioned here, the Victorinox 8 Inch Fibrox Pro Chef’s Knife is a great first chef's knife. The paring knife is good as well! This looks like a good cheap first time wood cutting board, and this looks like a nice plastic one.

    I personally do not recommend an electric sharpener - learn to hone the blade with a honing steel to keep the edge. I've got Shun Heavy Chef's Knife that is still as sharp today as when I bought it because I hone it religiously every 2-3 meals and don't use it where it's not supposed to be used. The great part about honing is it doesn't require a lot force to do, and you are really only interested in maintaining the edge you have. This is a Victorinox honing steel. Leave the sharpening to the professionals, though with these knives it's probably cheaper just to buy new ones.

    The other pieces of the puzzle:

    Cooking Utensils

    Get something like this set and extra spatulas to start with. Go for one piece utensils when possible since the are significantly more hygienic. Don't use metal utensils on the dutch oven or any non-stick pan, though they are fine in stainless pans.

    Cookware:

    I'm separating this into two sections, "You need this now" and "Purchase as you get better"

    You need this now:

    Electric Skillets - incredibly versatile, you can easily do one pan dishes in these. They are great for eggs and bacon though not so good for omelets. They are usually non-stick, so use wood, silicone, or plastic cooking utensils. They are usually dishwasher safe as well. Get one of these guys, don't spend more than $30. Something like this Proctor Silex is good to start with.

    Dutch Oven - Right now, this time of year especially, you can get ~6 quart dutch ovens for about $40 in many places. DO THIS. These are extremely versatile cooking implements, and you can do a whole host of dishes in them like stews, soups, roasts, braising, etc. They work well for low and slow cooking like a crock pot, with the added advantage that you can do browning of meat/veggies in them to build a fond ('foundation') for your meal. This Lodge 6 quart dutch oven goes on sale all the time, though it is more expensive right now. You can get a tramonita version at Sam's Club for about $40 right now though.

    Sauce pan - Get a 3 quart sauce pan or two. Non-stick is okay. Great for reducing sauces and making side vegetables (like corn or green beans, for example).

    Purchase as you get better (in this order)

    Saute pan - Get a 3 quart and ~6 quart when you can, though if you had to pick, get the 6 quart first. Make sure the lid is oven safe, as many times when I'm cooking I pop the whole thing in the oven to finish a meal. Cuisinart makes a 3.5 and 5.5 quart pan, and they are reasonably priced (~$50). Not critical when you first start, but definitely something you want down the line. Avoid non-stick pans here, as they are a pox upon the earth.

    Stock pot - Get a 8 quart and 12 quart when you can, non-stick is okay, but for one pot dishes regular stainless is preferred. If you have to choose, get the 8 quart first since it will be more versatile of the two to start with. You can use a dutch oven as a pseudo stock pot, but it isn't preferred.

    Skillets - Get an 8 inch and 12 inch when you can, though if you had to pick, get the 12 inch first. Versatile pans that can be used for quite a few different meals, great for meals where food needs to be flipped constantly. Since a non-stick electric skillet is the first pan you should buy, get a stainless pan here, though if you want to avoid an electric skillet a non-stick pan here is OK (get a stainless one though, seriously).

    Cast-iron skillet - Get one after you have been cooking for a bit, and learn the proper techniques of care. Make the best damn cornbread you will ever have. Seriously.

    I'll be honest, I disagree with a fair bit of the advice in here. First, I've never been a fan of pairing knives, you can use a basic 8" chef's knife for every kitchen task. Further, learning to use the chef's knife for more delicate work such as tomatoes will increase your knife skills at a much greater pace.

    Second, electric skillets are an abomination. They are for dorm rooms and backwoods cabins, or anywhere else that does not have a functioning stovetop. They compromise in every aspect and do nothing well. If you have a functioning stove, just buy one 10-12" TFal Pro non-stick skillet for eggs and other sticky things, and either a 12" stainless steel or cast iron skillet (or even better a good french carbon steel skillet). These will be the only skillets you would need for a long time. An electric skillet would only serve to become a waste of counter/storage space.

    You can also forgo the dutch oven if you just get a good 6-8QT stainless steel stock pot (with a good thick bottom). Anything you can do in the dutch oven, you can do 95% as well in a good steel stock pot. I have a Le Creuset Dutch oven, I love it, and use it all the time, but for a beginner, get something that will be much more useful in all aspects of cooking. You will quickly get tired of lugging out a 20lb dutch oven every time you want to cook a tomato sauce or cook a lot of rice.

    "I don't know about using a crock pot yet" puts dutch oven several months off minimum.

    One chef's knife is enough. If you can chop an onion you can figure out how to cook most things.

    What is this I don't even.
  • Mai-KeroMai-Kero Registered User regular
    For a blender/food processor I like the Ninja set we picked up a while back. I'm not sure if it's 'good' compared to a Vitamix or whatever but those things are like $400 so I went with the Ninja. It came with a blender, a food processor, and two mini blenders (for one-serving smoothies) and I love it.

    NightDragon
  • imdointhisimdointhis I should actually stop doin' this. Registered User regular
    Madican wrote: »
    imdointhis wrote: »
    http://www.thugkitchen.com/

    Thug Kitchen assumes you have zero baseline kitchen knowledge and takes you from the ABSOLUTE basics, to stocking a working pantry that you can basically bust out any basic filling dish, and focuses on making you a functional cook that can make tasty stuff with just the bare essentials of a kitchen.

    Really can't recommenced it enough for a fledgling kitchen-mancer.

    Halfway tempted to put one of these on the Amazon wishlist that is surely going to be distributed to all the family.

    Thankfully good sense is winning out over comedic value I think. Still, this is pretty nifty and I'll be perusing it further.

    Yeah, the language use is... unfortunate.... but it is super effective at helping you create a functional kitchen with easily prepared healthy meals from not even knowing how to cook rice

  • imdointhisimdointhis I should actually stop doin' this. Registered User regular
    The pantry list I am talking about:

    bweviwy6snfg.png

    ElvenshaeCommander Zoom
  • imdointhisimdointhis I should actually stop doin' this. Registered User regular
    Also, may i add, this is the website I used before mastering my own cooking skills. (I have a -very restrictive- medical diet but with the right seasonings and other tricks and liberal use of phyto-proteins I can make tasty filling food for everyone) - the recipes couldn't be easier and you'll notice almost all of the ingredients except for fresh veggies can sit in your fridge/shelves for a while.

    http://theveganstoner.blogspot.com/

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  • imdointhisimdointhis I should actually stop doin' this. Registered User regular
    Here is Thug Kitchen's Tool Section, which you may also find helpful

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    ElvenshaeCommander Zoom
  • imdointhisimdointhis I should actually stop doin' this. Registered User regular
    An excerpt from thug kitchen's waffle recipe:

    "Warm up the waffle iron. Don’t have a waffle iron? Well just how in the fuck did you plan on making this recipe? Go borrow one and get back in the kitchen. Damn. "

    ElvenshaeCalicaCommander Zoom
  • imdointhisimdointhis I should actually stop doin' this. Registered User regular
    Also if anyone cares, I fcking love my stone frying pan.

  • IrukaIruka Registered User, Moderator mod
    @imdointhis Gonna have to veto the posting of scanned cookbook pages unless you can show me those are shared on their websites or something

  • imdointhisimdointhis I should actually stop doin' this. Registered User regular
    @iruka both pages are from the kindle free sample. Plz let me know if thats not ok, ill remove

  • ElvenshaeElvenshae Registered User regular
    Their advice for parchment paper is spot on.

    Never having done that myself, of course.

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    Steam: Elvenshae // PSN: Elvenshae // WotC: Elvenshae
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  • Blameless ClericBlameless Cleric An angel made of sapphires each more flawlessly cut than the last Registered User regular
    edited December 2016
    oo as someone who has just moved out of home, here's a fun easy recipe for something I eat all the time:

    chopped potatoes

    olive oil

    salt, pepper, rosemary

    swish it around in a baking pan so it's all thoroughly salty/herby/oily

    25 min in the over at 425 degrees

    then just slap a chicken breast on some butter w/ more rosemary and salt in a pan until done while the potatoes cook (usually takes a little less time than potatoes will be in oven)

    serve with a handful of spinach

    total meal/cook time is like 30min once you get the hang of it, and I'm working with shitty knives, one like.. brownie pan, one horrible cutting board (I don't even bother trimming chicken right now) and one regular pan

    Blameless Cleric on
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  • djmitchelladjmitchella Registered User regular
    America's Test Kitchen / Cooks Illustrated / Cooks Country are a good place to go for recipes that pretty much always taste good; sure, it's their schtick to claim that, and sure, sometimes their recipes aren't what I want (they have Incorrect Opinions on what goes into chili, for instance) - but once your skills are up to following pretty simple instructions, you can make a lot of good-tasting stuff from those books without much effort. (only gotcha is to read the recipe all the way through first, because they tend to say things like "step 3: meanwhile, cook the pasta", which is fine but if you didn't get that pot of water heated up already, it can throw the timing off)

    imdointhis
  • CalicaCalica Registered User regular
    That Oatmeal comic speaks to me.

    DAE do that thing where you go to find a recipe, and every single thing looks vaguely nauseating? Like, unless I have a specific craving, I'll waffle in undecided frustration until I get hangry enough to just give up and eat a peanut butter sandwich.

    I don't know if it's because I hate cooking, or I hate eating my own cooking, or what.

    Also, fuck onions. Being in the vicinity of a cut raw onion makes me feel like someone's trying to gouge my eyes out with a spoon. Also shallots. I go through onion powder by the jar. (Garlic is cool, though. Garlic can stay.)

    Jedoc wrote: »
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  • VoodooVVoodooV Registered User regular
    maybe not healthy per se, but he's got general advice about cooking in this too:

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