My heart will go on and so will the cooking

As I write this final post for my ECMP 355 course I am becoming quite sad. I truly enjoyed this class for a few reasons: there was a great teacher, the subject area was of great interest and use to me, and finally that I got to take time to learn something I have learned to love.800px-Food_with_love.jpg

Before this class I was a classic student; I ate a lot of ramen and kraft dinner and as a server I also ate a lot of food from work. When I would cook it was extremely simple and I followed a recipe quite strictly. I have enjoyed baking for a long time; when baking you must follow the recipe diligently to receive a perfect product.

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Over the course of this semester, on top of learning more about technology and education, I learned how to cook proper meals. This was quite the undertaking as I tend to be broke most of the time and don’t have a lot of spare time. I believed that cooking well meant you needed the best ingredients and that it would involve slaving away in a kitchen all day. I was so pleased when my first cooking endeavor took less than two hours. My first post was lemon honey chicken and asparagus and hassle back potatoes. This was a delicious meal that was not overly expensive and tasted very good. I then followed it with my barbeque challenge. Later on, I tried pan-frying a marinated steak with a broccoli cheddar twice baked potato. My next endeavor involved collaborating with a fellow classmate, Tanya. She and I made a peach and basil pizza vegan style; her learnnig project was to learn how to cook vegan. Each of these required less than 50 dollars, gave me two servings and was delicious.

I loved using Pinterest to find new exciting things to cook. At this point I began to feel more comfortable in the kitchen, I started stocking up on groceries and cooking more often for myself. I even made my own homemade hamburger helper, it was quite good to be honest, but needed more cheese. My last two posts were focused on creating casserole-like meals which I could portion and use for lunches for more time. Part of my reasoning for choosing cooking was so I would feel more comfortable, but also so I would start eating better food and taking better care of myself. Learning to make the cottage pie and the lasagna were two of my biggest cooking accomplishments thus far. I learned how to make bulk meals that tasted good, were broke student friendly and would last a long time. I am so glad I was able to take this time to learn the art of cooking so I might continue on my own. I will continue to use Pinterest and hopefully keep updating my blog so you can continue to follow my journey as I attempt to further my love and skills in the art of cooking.

 

 

Perfecting the skills I have learned thus far

So far, I have done two posts about what I have cooked. The first one went over very well, especially the potatoes. However, I wanted to incorporate more vegetables. The BBQ challenge also went over very well but I did receive one comment asking me if i had done a marinade. At that exact moment, I had no idea what that meant so I went on a small hunt. Instead of trying something completely new I wanted to take this opportunity to improve on what I have done up to now. I started with incorporating more vegetables. While I was scrolling through Pinterest looking for potato recipes I came across this great one for a twice baked potato with cheese and broccoli. Right from the title I saw a vegetable so of course I had to click on the delicious looking picture to see what it would require. I was pleasantly surprised when it asked for not only broccoli, but also for cauliflower. I got a little confused as I didn’t see the cauliflower in the picture, until I read the directions for the recipe. I was amazed that it told me to mash the cooked cauliflower in with the potatoes scooped out of the shell. I loved this idea so I ran to superstore and got all the ingredient it required, except for the buttermilk because, well I forgot. I also grabbed I nice big steak so I could make the world best marinade, which I also found on Pinterest. 2A78AE51-1C0F-46AC-B1C9-B058FB2A8E38When I got home the first step was to follow the marinade recipe, which I altered by adding honey garlic sauce and eliminating the soy sauce. I also added some cayenne. I let the steak sit in the sauce for about three hours, and then I began the potatoes. I had to pierce them with a fork and cook them so when I cut them in half I could scoop out the insides. 20170530_194155I then mashed the potato “flesh” as said in the recipe with the cooked cauliflower. After that I was supposed to add the buttermilk, but since that wasn’t possible I used regular 2% milk with some lemon juice which I found online as a replacement for the missing ingredient. I also added some cheese in the mixture before scooping it back into the shells.20170530_194932 After they were all full and tantalizing I added the cooked broccoli (I stood it up so the stem was inside like a tree) and of course more cheese.20170530_195145

I then baked it in the oven for about 8 minutes. While the potatoes cooked I took the time to pan fry my steak to a perfect medium and voila, Bon Appetit!