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Ontario, Canada
I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
--Bobby Flay

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  • [January 15, 2016] - It's National Soup Month so this month's posts will focus on soups. Yum!
  • [February 1, 2016] - An interesting report on why you should always choose organic tea verses non-organic: Toxic Tea (pdf format)
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Monday, September 19, 2011

Frugal Kitchens 101 - Cooking Memories

Frugal Kitchens 101

The resources for recipes are practically endless but I have an admission to make.  I don't think I have ever followed a recipe as written.  Believe me I do have some wonderful, handwritten, handed dow through the generations recipes yet I still don't follow them exactly.  My foster Mom was 59 when I was born and shortly after I came to live with her, she lost her husband.  Our household consisted of my Mom, my foster sister, myself and the copious turnover of children taken in on an emergency basis for the Children's Aid.  My Mom was an amazing cook being raise as one of thirteen on a farm.  She knew how to can and cook, and she did it very well without the use of recipes.  All her recipes were in her head!  When she was diagnosed with diabetes her cooking suddenly stopped and then a few years later Alzheimer's took all the recipes in her head..

I have fond memories of watching her toss this and that into a pot or mixing bowl then waiting with anticipation for the finished dish or fresh batch of cookies.  One year, I helped her fill the freezers with homemade cookies to be donated to the needy as part of the Christmas care packs.  Oh my gosh, the cookies she could make just from her head!  I honestly don't recall her having any cookbooks other that a very old Betty Crocker's cookbook.  She bought one for me when I got married.  I am very much like her when it comes to cooking.  Oh sure there are all kinds of great recipes out there but as Michael Smith says the best recipe is cooking without a recipe.

Our grandchildren are very much at home in the kitchen.  The kids are teaching them how to read recipes, an excellent way to teach the little ones fractions and addition.  At the same time I have to chuckle a little when I see them teach the grandkids it's ok to put your own spin on a recipe to make it uniquely yours.  The words of culinary wisdom from my Mom are now teaching another generation.  It is priceless to watch!  I think she would be very proud to see these little ones cooking without a recipe, experimenting and really getting to know the ingredients.  That's what cooking is all about - not recipes, but rather knowing your ingredients and what you can and can't do with them.  It is amazing what you can cook with simple, inexpensive ingredients without using a recipe.  This is a fundamental skill of any frugal kitchen!

1 food lovers commented:

LindaG said...

My husband can cook like that, but I can't. I am clueless about everything.
My mom was not a cook.
My dad cooked a few things, but it has taken me years to not like everything well done, haha.

You're very lucky, I think, to be able to cook like you do. :)