Homemaking for dummies

cooking with gas

I spent some time in the kitchen today, performing an alchemic miracle that resulted in this modest dish (I’ll pause so you can ooh and ah and gasp at the sheer brilliance that is supper bake in a box), which contains chicken, which means that I have roughly eight to forty-eight hours before the gnarly teeth of salmonella poisoning consume me. I mean, I cooked it ’til it was nice and white but still, I’m paranoid that every bite I took is going to bring me closer to toilet-clenching death. The clock is ticking. Go, guts, go!

That’s the thing with me and cooking, really. I don’t trust myself. To this day, when I make macaroni from the box, I have to have that box on the counter within sight so that I can obsessively re-read the instructions to make sure I’ve not left a crucial step out. And I know how to fucking make box macaroni. But without those instructions nearby? I’m liable to take the boiling pot of pasta water and drain it by pouring it over my face. I am that cookingtarded.

It’s an issue of comfort, most likely. I just haven’t put in the time required to be familiar with the most basic cooking functions — the time/heat it takes to properly cook certain meats, the amount of water needed for any number of dishes, what this plus this equals and how to construct an honest-to-god meal using any number of available ingredients. I’m a picky eater and the foods I do like tend to be real crappy, so I’ve just not been all that curious about how meals are made. Most people overcome this little life speedbump when they’re, oh, TWELVE but somehow I’ve avoided the confrontation with my own ignorance by cracking wise and convincing myself that I will always live in a place where I can have food delivered to my house practically around the clock.

But here I am, leftovers in the fridge, appetite mostly sated, and it’s nice. (No shit! sings the chorus led by Sister Obvious.) I’ll keep cooking things out of a box until I get my kitchenlegs and then maybe I’ll move on to real cooking. Like boxless macaroni.

One thought on “Homemaking for dummies

  1. One of my favorite side dishes is homemade macaroni, and it’s really not that hard to make (once you perfect the cheese nirvana needed to blend it with the noodles).

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