Oh yeah. Meal prep relaxes me.
I was thinking of this thread as I prepped some marinade for “kolbi”. I tried out some serious knife skills for a marinade destined for a stick blender.
Isn’t it a great feeling doing things like that yourself? I will frequently just use a knife instead of dragging the food processor out. Unless I’m making large batches of something. I love to julienne things as well. I’m actually better at prep & making things in advance than I am at cooking items that require cooking shortly before serving, especially at dinner parties. Agree with Naf and shrinkwrap on that one!
It can be hard if there’s a lot. I make preserves - usually chutney - which need very fine chopping and these days I’d always get the processor out. However, the last couple of years, I’ve made a batch of marmalade using Seville oranges. The recipe I use calls for a kilo of oranges (about 10 oranges) and the peel has to be shredded. The processor grating disc gives too small a result so there’s nothing for it but to use a knife. It’s hard on these arthritic fingers!
Is it hard for anyone else if there’s a little? Why can’t I just throw it away???
Too much and too little problems.
A post was split to a new topic: Jams, jellies, syrups and chutneys, your beloved recipes
As we have aged and I have had health problems, my husband has taken over a lot of the cooking. We’ve learned to dance together in the kitchen. When we decide what we’re going to cook our process is to choose the vessels, line up the ingredients, negotiate oven/cooktop territory as well as who gets which knife…then the mis en place begins. I taught him the concept, he’s a retired engineer and hopped on board very quickly. We do this casually over the course of sometimes an hour before cooking commences. It’s working well.
Sounds like great harmony!..Then what is for desert?
I am definitely in the minority–I find it tedious(*). But then is it really surprising that most people who are reading/posting in the cooking section of a foodie board enjoy all aspects of cooking?
(*) One of my favorite baked fish recipes involves throwing a bunch of ingredients into a blender and then pouring it over the fish. The only really prep other than measuring is peeling the onion and chunking it. Even so, assembling the dozen ingredients (from 4 cupboards and the refrigerator) is annoying to me. I love the result, though.
Now I think more of it. These days when we buy the meat or fish, they are “prepared”, I wonder how many of us like to debone a bird or part of a pork…or to fillet a fish.
I vaguely remembered my mom once got a live chicken as present, she needed to kill and get rid of the feathers…etc.
Even vegetables, they are kind of clean these days. I still remember when I was a kid, mom asked me to help to wash leaves vegetables, I hated that. There were full of soil and sand, so many worms, and it took a long time to get rid of them.
My husband had always been my helper when I cook. He does not cook although he is very good with steaks. They come out perfect, well done crisp on the outside, rare on the inside. Whenever I am cooking, he sits in the kitchen and cleans as I cook. He does a lot of the chopping esp when I am making spring rolls as I make batches and batches, then freeze. He is the Cuisinart champ. I also have to make gluten free pizza or him, and he chops all the onions and sausages as that is how he likes it. Lots and lots of onions, he does all the chopping!
Prior to his retiring and being diagnosed in 1972 for gluten enteropathy, we used to bake together. We used to make flaming desserts , cherry jubilee, banana foster etc.
I miss him so much even after 7 years o absence
Enjoy each other. So happy for you
In summer, when we get vegetables directly from a local farm that is exactly the experience. Though I do have to spend much more time prepping, those veggies and greens are super fresh and much tastier than anything we can buy at a supermarket.
I’m willing to do this work as an adult. As a kid I am sure I would have been unhappy too.
I guess you are right. Actually I don’t like using blender or extractor of juice that much (except the hand held blender), I find cleaning the machines quite tedious. But that’s cleaning, I never like that.
Yeah, the insects really freaked me out, but those were the days. Now I eat from my garden, there are more washing to do, but it’s fine.
We tend not to eat dessert. He keeps a stash of ice cream to eat when the mood hits him.
I decided a year or two ago that I wasn’t going to buy any chicken except skinless boneless breasts, the one exception being that I will get a roasting chicken for Seder. Part of the problem is that kosher chicken parts usually still have a fair number of feathers attached that have to be plucked–my Passover schedule had to allow a half hour just to wash and pluck the chicken before I could roast it.
Apparently now you can get skinless boneless thighs as well, so I might get those occasionally.
I also buy only fish fillets (including sardines). Skin is okay, though, particularly if I am broiling.
Definitely depends on the activity. I like chopping, peeling, marinating, and even some washing (easy stuff). Soaking is easy as long as I remember to do it, but whether or not I remember is a whole other topic. Usually I do enjoy prepping as part of the cooking process, and agree it’s relaxing.
There are some vegetables that are a giant pain to wash, like a few variety of Chinese vegetables. Sometimes they are grittier than others and require a few water changes and rinsing, especially when dirt they are stuck in the ribs of the veggies. Sometimes I’ve noticed I get a batches that are buggier than others () so careful rinsing and agitation is a must. A lot the dried, salted or preserved veggies used in Chinese cooking are a big annoyance (looking at you, mei cai!!) and I hate it but you have to do it thoroughly.
Just a personal thing - I’m terrible at chopping matchsticks sized veggies. I don’t know why, so usually I don’t enjoy it.
ccj - my heart goes out to you. I’ve become dependent on my husband and count my blessings everyday the he is by my side.
Interesting how many people say they like prep work. Unless I’m teaching my son something new, like different ways of cutting up an onion, I’m averse. But I do it. And all my extended family seems amazed at the time I put into shopping, preparation, and cooking. So?