How it Began
I started out like most folks, eating takeout, with the occasional canned soups, microwave dinners and frequent instant noodles.
That all changed for me when I read an article that described how it was actually much fresher, healthier and cheaper per portion to purchase ingredients for a premix separately and make your own. Being curious I went to the local supermarket after school, picked up my beloved dried pasta premix and read the ingredients label for the first time.
The ingredients label read like a chemistry textbook – half of the ingredients I couldn’t recognise, so I ignored. The rest of the ingredients, however, were things far more familiar – Pasta (dried of course), sour cream powder, chives, onion powder, salt, sugar, spices. I took that packet, walked over to the pasta section that was just beside, got a box of fusilli pasta, dairy section, got sour cream, vegetable section, got chives, got black pepper, paid and headed home. (I did buy that brand name packet, as insurance in case my ‘experiment’ didn’t go well).
How did it turn out? Well it was half a disaster – My pasta wasn’t soggy (thank you packet cooking directions), it was far too under-seasoned, and my chives looked like a bunch of soggy seaweed. BUT! It still tasted 10x better than the dried pasta packet. I finished all my food and didn’t use the insurance. Over the next week I made the same dish a few more times, and each time, it got better.
I was addicted.
It was an epiphany to me, that I could actually eat cheaper, healthier, tastier and better by reverse engineering my favorite packaged foods! What was next? Minestrone soup, Frozen meals, Mushroom soup (turned out bad, but that’s another story for another time) – the possibilities were endless!
As I progressed, I got addicted to the process, the smells, the excitement, and the thrill of creating these dishes. It was empowering for me! Rather than be at the mercy of companies that dictate how much chicken I get to eat in their “Chicken Alfredo with Broccoli” Frozen dinners, I could buy a larger portion of chicken for myself! If I was really careful to shop during sales, I could even make the same food; in four portions worth, all for the price of 1 frozen dinner!
Since then I’ve done my time in military service, graduated from university, got a job and started working… But through it all, I kept cooking. And the more I cooked, the better I got at it. Along the way, I had the privilege of cooking for friends, loved ones and family, which gave me a new satisfaction from cooking. The satisfaction that I could share not just wonderful food, but also the memories, the laughs, and the special moments.
Which brings me to this blog. Up until this point, I had learned to feed myself, and then to feed others. A collective experience of 17 years cooking, 32 years of eating, and much more to come.
This blog is dedicated to you. If you have a desire to eat better, to cook better, to know more about food, or to simply take control of your meals – this is the place for you!
As a home cook, I want to share the recipes I use, the skills that I have learned, and the other bits and pieces that bring it all together.
Be inspired to cook, and eat.