Cooking can be a lot of fun and is really rewarding when you finally finish preparing a meal. Sitting down and finding out that it tastes amazing is such a good feeling. However, it can also be super frustrating, stressful and confusing when you are just learning how to cook.
This summer, I have been trying my hardest to learn how to cook, because this upcoming fall I will no longer be relying on the questionable dining hall food and will be cooking my own meals… A blessing and a curse. It can be hard. What do I cook? What do I have with that? How long do I keep that in the oven? How much should I put in?
I have found that a lot of times, simple directions come on the label for whatever you want to cook. If that doesn’t work, there is probably a recipe and directions online. For Christmas last year, I got a cookbook from Santa that I kind of brushed off to the side. But having a simple cookbook has been extremely helpful and informative to me during these past couple of months that I’ve been learning how to cook.
Here are a few simple things I’ve learned how to cook this summer that I can easily make in my apartment without any help.
The only thing you really have to actually cook for tacos is the meat, and it’s pretty easy to put meat on a frying pan, add taco seasoning, and figure out when it’s ready to eat. Everything else that you need to make tacos, you just have to cut up. Also, tacos are the kind of meal where you don’t need to add a bunch of sides, just eat more tacos. Who doesn’t like tacos?
Everything is put on the tortilla shell before you have to turn the burner on. After that, it’s honestly just a matter of how well-cooked you like your quesadillas! You can basically put whatever you want on it, too! These are also great with nachos and salsa.
Pasta and Garlic Bread
For most pastas, all you have to do is boil water and throw in the shells/noodles or whatever type of pasta you are cooking. The pasta box will also tell you exactly how long you should keep it in the boiling water before straining it. At the same time as the pasta, you can cut up a baguette, search a simple garlic bread recipe, and put it in the oven. If you time it just right, you can have the garlic bread and the pasta done at the same time (which can be a bit stressful at first, but it’s worth it).
A Simple Cobb Salad
Salads are always a good meal choice. Not only are they healthy, but they can also be very filling. In my cobb salads, I add lettuce, some kind of cheese, tomatoes, avocado, bacon and grilled chicken (yes, I skip the hard boiled egg… I’m not a fan). Basically, you need to cook the bacon and the grilled chicken, but it won’t take long. Bacon can be cooked in the microwave for three to four minutes depending on how much bacon you would like. The grilled chicken can either be grilled on a grill (duh) or you can cook it on a frying pan until it is cooked enough for your liking. Everything else just needs to be chopped, and then you throw it all together and have yourself a tasty salad!
These are just a few of the meals I’ve made this past summer, in hopes of becoming a better cook for the fall in my apartment! I am aiming for simple but healthy (ish) meals, and hopefully if you’re reading this because you need some cooking inspiration, you’ll try a few of these as well!