These days, I spend alot of time scouring for recipes and thinking of what to cook for dinner. I just bought a recipe book called "One Pot" from the bookstore this morning. I wasn't that adventurous when we were staying with my parents. The food we ate then was more traditional and predictable. Not to mention, bland and digestible.
Now that we're on our own, I am getting more adventurous in the kitchen. YK would sometimes exclaim "Mummy, why must you be so extra?" when he sees me experimenting again. We had our first Japanese cuisine night. I served teriyaki salmon and cod, grilled unagi (eel), seasoned baby octopus, miso soup complete with short-grained rice from Kyushu sprinkled with dried fish roe, sesame seeds and flavoured seaweed.
We've had kimchi hotpot recently. I'm thinking of making fish curry tonight. Tomorrow we're having popiah lunch when my brothers come visiting.
Well, I've always enjoyed cooking. Besides, I want them to try the whole smorgasbord instead of eating the same things day in, day out. I can't bring them to the restaurants every other day but I can try to give them a similar (or close enough) culinary experience at home.
Whenever I eat something nice at a restaurant, I always think of my loved ones. The first thing that comes to my mind is, "If only my kids or parents can try this!" Then I try to recreate the dish at home. Of course it will never taste the same but at least I've tried.
That said, some things are just not worth the trouble making at home. Baking cakes is not really my strongest suit. Without a proper oven and baking equipment at home, chances of failure is quite high. Besides, the amount of butter or oil and sugar that goes into a cake is simply too appalling, we need many people to share the calories. So I would rather buy a nice slice of cake from the store than slave in the kitchen all day to end up with a lump that nobody wants to eat.
The kids often reminisce about the days when we baked cookies so long ago. They loved playing with dough and seeing their deformed cookies emerge from the oven. I must agree the smell of freshly baked cookies wafting through the house is indeed quite unforgettable. That's a good reason to start baking again. But first, let me get a new oven.