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Help! I've lost my cooking mojo and I want it back!


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I'm comfortable shopping now, so long as my N95 mask is on. Having to depend on Instacart shoppers was maddening, maybe worse than staying mostly home, (White potatoes are not Yukon Golds etc etc).

 

Been to outdoor restaurants a couple times, it wasn't a fear-filled experience, but it wasn't as great as I had expected.  If I learned anything from Covid it is that I cook tasty food that is pretty cheap.  In that sense covid is saving us money.

 

Cooking fatigue usually results in frozen pizza one night a week, or better yet, take out pizza.

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As was mentioned by @ambrain an earlier post here I like to browse for interesting recipes and will often stumble onto something that piques my interest and makes me want to whip up a good looking dish or two.

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I am in the same place. It is mainly the pandemic. I am so sick of trying to think of what to cook, where and how to get what I need to cook it and then cooking it, that I don't want to sit down and eat. I've lost weight. I seldom even drink wine. I had my annual doctor visit last week. He said that they've coined a new term COW Syndrome--COVID-something-Weariness. 

 

I do have to say that my worsening hand and arm pain (OA and tendinitis) have made cooking much less pleasurable, too.

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Deb

Liberty, MO

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I should have added carpal tunnel syndrome in both wrists. :(

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~Martin :)

I just don't want to look back and think "I could have eaten that."

Unsupervised, rebellious, radical agrarian experimenter, minimalist penny-pincher, self-reliant homesteader, and adventurous cook. Crotchety, cantankerous, terse curmudgeon, non-conformist, and contrarian who questions everything!

The best thing about a vegetable garden is all the meat you can hunt and trap out of it!

 

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I think so many are feeling this to some degree. My little set of reasons (many already mentioned):

 
1. Many forced to stock up per covid.  A lot of the same ingredients.  Since we don't waste food we feel forced to use them in 50 ways before stocking up yet again w more then we typically need. Depressing.  

 

2. Folks had a nice mix of cooking and eating out w allowed a mental and physical break (esp for those w ailments).  Also eating out inspired home cooking.  

 

3. The shit storm of horrible world events, politics, being locked up and a big one for me, not being able to travel! 
 

4.  (TBD)

 

Edited by Eatmywords (log)
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That wasn't chicken

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@Eatmywords "being locked up and a big one for me, not being able to travel!"

 

Last November I decided to cut way back on travel. I'd been 100K on American for decades. It exhausted me for the past few years.

 

So covid played right into that. Its a joy to look at my calendar and not see flights I have to catch. No travel stress now.

 

Thanks, covid! 

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6 minutes ago, gfweb said:

@Eatmywords "being locked up and a big one for me, not being able to travel!"

 

Last November I decided to cut way back on travel. I'd been 100K on American for decades. It exhausted me for the past few years.

 

So covid played right into that. Its a joy to look at my calendar and not see flights I have to catch. No travel stress now.

 

Thanks, covid! 

 

I meant just a couple times a year! haha.  Just having something planned, to look frwd to, does wonders for the psyche esp for us non-jet setters.  😁

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That wasn't chicken

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3 hours ago, weinoo said:

You could all always try something new - like cooking naked?  Well, wear shoes.

 

Nah - forget I even said that.

 

Here are a few ideas that I really think helped me. I've basically cooked or prepared 3 meals a day, every day, since when, March 16th? 

It's truly not the cooking that causes the ennui, it's really the cleaning up part - which I do religiously, because well - I was once a professional, and that's what you do. And god knows, I don't want to walk into a dirty kitchen in the morning. In an 800 square foot apartment. With a cat.

 

But - try digging into a new-to-your cooking routine cuisine.  Like I've done with Thai/sushi/dumplings - most everything is available via Amazon or some other source. You know, something you only eat when you go out to eat - like @Shelby has done with sushi, for example. 

 

Believe me, I'm just as miserable as the rest of you (okay, moreso probably), but this is just an ugly chapter in our history, and it too shall pass.

 

I want Significant Eater's life, or at least her book list. I'm chewing through two or three novels a week. If it weren't for the Sunday Times and the daily Two Not Touch puzzle I could make that four. Thank god for eG: my husband really doesn't need to hear me whining, so I have company here. No one can throw a cast iron frying pan in space. 

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I am so desperate for my kitchen I set the alarm for 3am so I can get in the kitchen, clean up, air it out and pretend I was never there. Kroger brand pork & shrimp potstickers work as dumplings with frozen spinach= soup. I am a "souper" - Huy Fong chili garlic - I am good.  My hands do not work well  so my chopping is clunky but just for me so I let it be.  (simple words of wisdom...) 

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It's the cooking glut...I was there a couple months ago, still sometimes trip and fall back in...

 

What I found helped was;

 

- Documenting what we really like to eat, dishes we have made, and starting to schedule what I wanted to cook the following week.

- At first, really bringing everything back to the basics; old standby's that everyone enjoyed and that were somewhat easy to prep.

- From there, starting to branch out and looking into ethnic cuisines I enjoy cooking but wanted to evolve (my Indian, Thai and Chinese game are on point!)

- Re-creating dishes we would have enjoyed eating out at restaurants and being OK if they do not turn out exactly as we might have remembered (gives a challenge to build from the next go-round).

 

Looking on this site helped a lot, as did watching some interesting cooking and foraging Youtube videos.

 

We tried ordering in (take-out) a few times during the pandemic, most food does not travel well and not to toot my own horn, but I can prepare better food than most of those places, so I would rather reduce the stress and anxiety (oh, anxiety, how you have reared your ugly head this last while!) and just spend the money on high quality ingredients and do it myself.

 

Now the fun really begins, 'virtual school' for a 7 and 5 year old while my 3 year old darling angel plays 'quietly' in the background.

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1 hour ago, Katie Meadow said:

I want Significant Eater's life, or at least her book list. I'm chewing through two or three novels a week. If it weren't for the Sunday Times and the daily Two Not Touch puzzle I could make that four. Thank god for eG: my husband really doesn't need to hear me whining, so I have company here. No one can throw a cast iron frying pan in space. 

Good Heavens.  Just looked up the Two Not Touch puzzles and am wondering if this old brain could do them.  I still find most Sudoku above my happilly-functioning brain level these days.   Never was any good at maths of any kind except for Algebra. 

 

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Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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I think I'm tired of cooking just for myself.  That's generally the case but I still had friends over or brought dishes to gatherings, cookies to the library, stuff like that added a little variety.

I should seek out more sharing opportunities, aside from the popsicles I've been deluging people with!

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There is a certain freedom I relish in just cooking for me.  And speaking of relish I have a craving for cheap nuked/steamed hot dogs in toasted generic buns with sweet pickle relish, onions and ballpark mustard. As soon as the food police depart - it is on! One or two will do - freezer is a friend at times.

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@heidih 

 

I understand this completely :

 

consider torching the Dogs after the Micro w a ' torch '

 

dont use your GrandMa's chine for this 

 

keep the torch not as close as you thing

 

if you like toasted generic buns , fine

 

I like mired ( steam'd ) buns , and the micro does this fine

 

the rest you put on this deliciousness  

 

is up to you

 

but simple stuff  ' Before '  is so much more tasty now.

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4 minutes ago, rotuts said:

@heidih 

 

I understand this completely :

 

consider torching the Dogs after the Micro w a ' torch '

 

I like mired ( steam'd ) buns , and the micro does this fine

 

No I never liked dogs on the grill. We'd get the veal ones and they kinda "pop" their skins when you steam or lightly simmer. Bread always toasty. Once in a while King;s Hawaiian (locasl homies) but even those prefer toasted to squish. Again the beauty and freedom of cooking for yourself ;)

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6 minutes ago, rotuts said:

@heidih 

 

a 'dog' is such a personal item 

 

enjoy!

This is so true.  I'm mostly with Heidih.  Cheap buns, cheap yellow mustard, sweet relish...but the hot dogs must be charred.  And, of course, potato chips.  Miss VIcki's please.  Oh hot dogs, preferably Red Hots. 

Edited by Darienne (log)
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Darienne

 

learn, learn, learn...

 

Life in the Meadows and Rivers

Cheers & Chocolates

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35 minutes ago, heidih said:

There is a certain freedom I relish in just cooking for me.  And speaking of relish I have a craving for cheap nuked/steamed hot dogs in toasted generic buns with sweet pickle relish, onions and ballpark mustard. As soon as the food police depart - it is on! One or two will do - freezer is a friend at times.

 

I want to visit when you start cooking again! LOL :wink:

~Martin :)

I just don't want to look back and think "I could have eaten that."

Unsupervised, rebellious, radical agrarian experimenter, minimalist penny-pincher, self-reliant homesteader, and adventurous cook. Crotchety, cantankerous, terse curmudgeon, non-conformist, and contrarian who questions everything!

The best thing about a vegetable garden is all the meat you can hunt and trap out of it!

 

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@DiggingDogFarm 4 acres and 4,000 s.f. - there is room for ya  :)  Tremors not an issue - maple kitchen floor, granite counters, linoleum at computer station. marble hallways mostly. I hate carpet so avoid those areas - allergy nests. You Are Golden! 

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of course 

 

if you choose to put cheese

 

on your Dog

 

I cant help you

 

this happened once in my Culinary Carrer

 

I was  6 y.o.   grilled

 

I was sick for two days

 

[ed.:  probably not the Dog  nor the Cheese . Kraft Slices ?]

 

just Times Gone By 

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