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Anna N

Are you generally a “one of cook” or a “repeater”?

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11 minutes ago, chromedome said:

The only time I've been able to cook exactly what I wanted, whatever I wanted, at any meal was when I was single...and how much fun is cooking for one? (sigh)

I think you answered your own question. :D 

 

 While there are many downsides to cooking for one (and even more downsides to eating alone) there is also the opportunity to cook and eat exactly what you want and when you want it. Since I can’t easily (perhaps I should say willingly) change my singleton status I celebrate my freedom. :D

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Since Deb still works, I can live in both worlds, being free to innovate during the day, but cook to please her, on nights and weekends. It works for us.

HC 

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1 hour ago, MetsFan5 said:

 

  I think I really enjoy dining out after years of waiting on people dining out. 

 

Its funny, I used to enjoy dining out a lot, but I've gradually shifted to mostly eating in. Not many decent restaurants where we live and it makes me nuts to wait for worse food than I can make. So maybe we eat out once a week.

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I am a mix.  When I have the time, I enjoy exploring completely new dishes/recipes.   I probably do that maybe once a week, but I generally only cook dinner a few times a week at most.  I often make the same basic dish on a recurring basis, but I rarely end up with the exact same result - nor am I trying to.  Sometimes it is an experiment with a different recipe (or combination of recipes), sometimes it is just a matter of what I have on hand (or not).  I usually keep notes about what worked well and what didn't.

 

I suspect as is the case for many, part my reason for repeating is simply lack of imagination/recall when planning my meals and/or shopping.  Part of it is that I simply enjoy eating certain dishes though.  It is not unusual for me to seek out something from my recipe database that I haven't made in a while, but that is still a repeat.  Of course the seasonality of some ingredients also helps to change up the favorites throughout the year.

 

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I'm definitely a 'repeater' although I do spend a ridiculous amount of time searching for new recipes (my Living Cookbook software recipe collection is huge.)  I do like finding some new recipe that I can put into my rotation.  

Since I now live alone, I don't cook as often as I used to and the meals I do make have leftovers enough for at least a couple of days.

So I maybe cook an actual meal two or three times a week.  I seek opportunities to have lunch out, sometimes with friends and sometimes by myself when I'm out and about running errands or shopping.

 

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12 hours ago, JoNorvelleWalker said:

 

And you're still living together?

 

 

Yes

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I'm a mix.  I live alone and only cook for myself. 

 

Since I am trying to get healthier, I usually cook once a week for all of my meals (it makes it easier for my laziness).  Sunday is usually a cook a thon to prep for the week.

 

Breakfasts tend to be the same all the time with few changes.  Lunches and Dinners is where I will explore.  Dinner, I'll leave the more complicated items or things that I like fresh like asparagus, etc.  Lunch, I like to make things that I can mix without being too gross. 

 

I still like trying different recipes and I have a huge library of cookbooks, but cooking and eating all of that for one gets kind of tedious.

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It makes no sense to me to choose "one of" vs "repeat." My goal for trying new recipes is to find ones that are keepers and worth repeating. If something new turns out to be great I will def make it again. If it is just as good as I remembered (like a week ago!) it will be in frequent rotation until we get tired of it or improve on it or find something better that replaces it. Most keepers that pass the test of time do morph a bit over the years. The only dish that seems to get made the exact same way every time is Coq au Vin, but that's because my husband makes it and he simply follows the recipe with no changes. And I stay out of his way. 

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4 hours ago, gfweb said:

 

Its funny, I used to enjoy dining out a lot, but I've gradually shifted to mostly eating in. Not many decent restaurants where we live and it makes me nuts to wait for worse food than I can make. So maybe we eat out once a week.

We feel much the same.  I have the uncanny ability to order the worst thing on the menu.  I also hate it when the plate arrives and it screams "I don't care".  

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I guess the same question can be applied to dining out habits: do you go to the same restaurants again and again? Or do you prefer to try new restaurants? I think for home cooking and dining out both, the choices are not mutually exclusive by any means. 

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1 hour ago, cakewalk said:

I guess the same question can be applied to dining out habits: do you go to the same restaurants again and again? Or do you prefer to try new restaurants? I think for home cooking and dining out both, the choices are not mutually exclusive by any means. 

Around here, the range of restaurants being limited, I usually stick to my tried-and-true. If I'm in Memphis or Little Rock, where the selection is much better, I will go about 50-50 between hitting a new spot and sticking with an old favorite. If I'm completely out of town, I'll go for some local place I've looked up that looks interesting.

 

 

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Posted (edited)

During the week, I’m mostly a repeater.  On the weekends when I have more time, I try to cook something new.  I’m lucky in that I spend  the weekends with my boyfriend(although that seems like an odd term since we’re in our 60‘s) who will eat anything and declare it the best he’s ever eaten.   His nonna was born in Naples so I’m a little nervous when I cook Italian but everything I cook he thinks is as good as or better than hers.  It may just be positive reinforcement but he’s always willing to go out for dinner and we have lots of choices around here.  I certainly get lots of inspiration from folks here.


Edited by Jacksoup Bad grammar (log)
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I discovered I'm a one of by scrolling through my dinner pictures on facebook and noticed I don't have that many repeats. I turned to the Man and said you are damn lucky I hardly repeat a meal! Whats funny though is I'd be fine eating my favourite thing for a few days, the M likes diversity and is very open to experiments and is brutally honest when it comes to his belly!

I think I repeat by missing something and starting the cycle again or changing it up somewhat. 
For company I believe in tried and true and when I don't follow my basic rule I serve as an app baked avocado slices wrapped in bacon...terribly disappointing baby food sort of appetizer.

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Mostly a repeater, and my attempts to use more recipes from cookbooks are looking for new things to add the to list of what I repeat in the future. Mrs Porthos has mostly given the new dishes thumbs up.

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Well, of course, both.  Who hasn't roasted a chicken more than once, or pan-fried a pork chop for a quick dinner; I'd find it hard to believe if that wasn't done in your house more than once!

 

As for dinner parties, I definitely try to make the dish at least once ahead of time - (see dinner thread and the coda alla vaccinara). Theree have been some rather hysterical fails, both by myself and others, when attempting a dish for the first time in front of guests.

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32 minutes ago, weinoo said:

Well, of course, both.  Who hasn't roasted a chicken more than once, or pan-fried a pork chop for a quick dinner; I'd find it hard to believe if that wasn't done in your house more than once!

I did modify my question with the word “generally”.  I don’t think anyone falls into either camp completely. But it is interesting to notice a pattern. xD

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4 hours ago, weinoo said:

Well, of course, both.  Who hasn't roasted a chicken more than once, or pan-fried a pork chop for a quick dinner; I'd find it hard to believe if that wasn't done in your house more than once!

 

As for dinner parties, I definitely try to make the dish at least once ahead of time - (see dinner thread and the coda alla vaccinara). Theree have been some rather hysterical fails, both by myself and others, when attempting a dish for the first time in front of guests.

 

I was thinking about that when I answered the question as there are only so many proteins I prepare but what I noticed is  I don't have a stock meal ie every time I have pork chops I have to have baked spuds and roasted carrots with it. I tend to change up how I prepare the chops and the sides that go with it. Cooking is one of my creative outlets and a huge stress reliever and I don't have little ones that can suck the life out of creative cooking ;)

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Dopey fact, only relevant because pork chops have been mentioned twice: I have eaten a pork chop exactly once in 70 years, or more correctly been served one once. I don't believe I ate it. When I was young my mother made a memorably awful meal with pork chops and never repeated the recipe or the chops. I'm pretty sure her parents never ate pork, so her experience may have been limited, although in all fairness she was a lousy cook generally. And it's not that I don't eat pork; I've just never ordered a chop or cooked one myself.

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Pork is the biggest thing standing between me and being vegetarian. I could give up beef, game, and even chicken first. Just don't take my pig.

 

That said, I must have cooked pork chops thousands of times over the past 40 years, probably in at least 150 different ways.

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I would characterize myself as an obsessive student when it comes to cake/pastry/dessert.  I WILL make something 10 times to get it right and I will take notes about what worked/didn't work, tweaks, etc. But this is my job so I have to.  The flourless chocolate cake I made last week has to be the same as the one I made last year for the client who comes in once a year for his/her birthday treat. It helps that I have that kind of drive, though.   Actually I like calling it "passion" better ;)

 

As for real food, I do not have the same "passion" so I make what the family will eat and they go through stages: baked fish with crumbs, chicken/ziti/broccoli, various combinations  of pasta/sauce/meat, the meatloaf (minus the Accent stuff) from the Ann Landers' column, the Instant Pot pulled port recipe from a book I got a year ago, and now that I have an IP, pot roast. In the summer, if it can be grilled, it gets grilled and pasta salad with Wishbone Robusto Italian dressing is de riguer. It annoys me to no end that the husband will not eat leftovers.  There are only so many meatloaf sandwiches one can eat in a week.

 

I am an adventurous eater, though so I am happy to eat new foods as well as old favorites.

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Posted (edited)

So anyway, back to the topic (sorry)...  I recently perfected a dish that I wish I could have many years ago.  But I don't think I could have without all of the various mistakes I've made over the years while experimenting.  I don't know if one can become a good cook just by repeating.  Even if that will be the ultimate goal.

 

 

 

 

 


Edited by IndyRob (log)
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I'm all over the place on this one. Some days, I love trying new things but some days I just want to grab a package of spaghetti sauce from the freezer (the same spaghetti sauce that I've been making for 25 years) and have a quick dinner.  

When my husband was alive, he liked his tried-and-true favorites and wasn't really interested in trying new things. My housemate and his girlfriend, who is living with us temporarily, are game for just about anything. I do have limitations on what I can make because dinner hours are erratic due to their work schedules, they prefer to have light dinners, and I can't cook with any onions, garlic or green peppers. If I use a new recipe, I can only use it as a guideline and substitute as I go along. I don't think I've ever made a  dinner in my life that I could repeat exactly.

if I could just put my two cents worth in about the title of this topic, I do agree that it should probably be ‘one off’ but, it hasn't seemed to hurt it a bit that it isn't that way given the response that it has gotten. Our brains are hardwired to fill in the missing parts. As for all of our posts, it would be an absolute crime if we were policed to the point where we all had to sound alike. The idiosyncrasies of the different people give me a glimpse into the personalities of people that I will never meet face to face but I am still proud to call my friends. If we were to demand perfect English think of all the people that don't have English as their first language that we would lose. The diversity of our members is what makes this place so interesting. And, all the typos, bad grammar, abbreviations, arrogance, humility, and such define us as a community of free-thinkers instead of a pack of robots. I love it all, just the way it is.

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I tend to be half and half. I'll make something once, and then remember that it was good much later and do it again. I tend to "make it and then forget about it" until my husband reminds me that we ought to make it again. I do have certain go-to recipes, though, like my scone recipe.

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