How Did You Learn to Cook?

By Lady B

In my house my mother did all of the cooking. Dinners were never anything elaborate. She came home from work, threw a few things in the oven, microwaved some vegetables and called it good. I never helped her much and other than her homemade lasagna, nothing she made seemed particularly challenging.
When I left home it was to go to college. There I almost always ate at the dining hall where everything was cooked for me. It took until I moved into a house off campus during my third year of college for me to realize I didn’t know how to cook.
How had I made it to the age of 21 without knowing anything about cooking? When I asked my mother why she never taught me how to cook she said I was never that interested in it. Interested or not, it’s an important life skill! Thankfully I had some roommates show me the basics.
Over the years I have slowly picked up cooking skills, though I’m by no means a great cook. Just the other night I made chicken and it was chewy. I can follow a recipe and add my own twist after I’ve made something a few times. I’m not afraid to try new things and I’m not afraid to fail. There is always a pizza waiting in my freezer just in case!
I’ve often wondered how people learn to cook. My ex-boyfriend’s uncle had a cooking show but was never officially trained. He didn’t go to cooking school or study under a master chef. When he was in his twenties, single and broke, he started teaching himself to cook. His friends joined him and together they perfected recipes and honed their skills. Eventually he became a chef, opened a restaurant, and later had a small cooking show on TV that took him all over the world. Pretty impressive!
I’ve thought about taking a cooking class a few times. I’ve even gone as far as researching classes, picking one out, and writing it on my calendar, only to not register for it after all.
How did you learn to cook? Have you ever taken a cooking class?

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I love this! I learned to cook all on my own, trying out different recipes and dishes! I used to be horrible when my husband and I were first married but I have gotten better over time! 🙂

My parents taught me to cook as I was growing up. It was never anything elaborate, they were elderly and simple tends to be the standard for Depression-era folk but they gave me a solid foundation. It was a combination of simple whole foods and standard American convenience food (I can’t even begin to count the number of times we had meals comprised of Tuna Helper). I always liked cooking so I sought out cooking shows and books. When I had kids we found out they had food sensitivities, so I had to learn how to cook almost everything from… Read more »


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