Years ago after divorce, I began cooking much more. Since that time, everyone in my house is much happier. Here’s what cooking got me:
1. Happy children. We cook what we like. I, of course, control the diet which is always healthy or at least “balanced”. They look forward to home cooked meals – and considering that’s all we eat, that’s pretty good! They’re learning to cook – another great benefit. They take responsibility for their own food – they don’t depend on me for food. And they don’t ask to eat crappy food so much, because they’ve discovered some really good food they can make on their own.
2. Happy me. I enjoy eating out at a good restaurant, but I don’t like to depend on a good restaurant for good food. So, when I shop, I shop to cook. And when I cook, I cook to eat. Usually, if I cook, I cook for multiple meals. For example, when the main objective is dinner, I might make some fish for dinner tonight and enough lunch tomorrow as well.
Speaking of fish, if you bake bread often (we do), save the dried left over bread for bread crumbs. Even if they’re old, put them in the blender to grind them, toast and salt them and they’ll freshen up pretty well. Usually, whatever it is that you want to bread will taste awesome. We’ve been breading tilapia with home made bread crumbs and it is usually quite awesome.
I eat a lot. I also eat frequently. That’s probably because I use a lot of energy. And no matter who you are or what you do – if your work, workout, study time, etc. requires a lot of effort, you will be DEPRESSED if you don’t feed yourself the nutrition that the activity requires. So, I’ve found that for me to be happy, I need to eat a lot of really good food. And often. So I cook.
3. A happy woman. She’s always happy when I cook. And that’s cool. She probably would have been less likely to stick around if I didn’t cook.
I think a lot of people justify not cooking for various reasons. Whatever those reasons are, consider rejecting them so you can take control of the food you eat. Make good eating a ritual. It requires planning. For me its more than a ritual even, its more like my religion. I live because of food. Literally.