Why you should learn how to cook

If you’ve been following me on IG, you would know that I’ve been cooking like crazy recently. Not just on IG, but even my coworkers have noticed this as I am often bringing lunch into office and talking about going to the grocery store after work. I really enjoy cooking. It’s been something that I’ve been doing more and more of since moving into my own place (no disrespect to my roommate Johnny – he exists too). Cooking at home is great for a few reasons, the main one being money, others being that you get to control what you eat, but it also provides one with an activity or hobby – although I know plenty of people who don’t like to cook. But today, I just wanted to write about why cooking is the best.

Before I get into that, here’s me going against the grain and arguing against every argument for why cooking sucks.

  1. Cooking takes so much time, must as well eat out
    Cap, by the time you get dressed, go to the restaurant look at the menu, wait for the food to be cooked, eat, and go home – you can easily cook and clean dishes before any of that – without having to pay for it out of pocket too. Also meal prep is like super easy. You invest like 2 hours a week on a Sunday and you get all your food made, it’s pretty effective and efficient.
  2. Restaurant food tastes so much better
    First off, get good. Secondly – restaurants use crazy amounts of fats, oils, salt, butter, and other things that if eaten regularly in excess could negatively affect your weight. Of course it’s going to taste better. They’ve also invested in the equipment to make their food taste better, you could do that too – you would just have to buy more stuff.
  3. I don’t like to cook
    Yeah this is fair, it’s not for everyone but it could be a fun activity, rather than a chore. It doesn’t have to be in line with doing the laundry or vacuuming. Maybe there’s something in particular that you really liking doing in the kitchen that you don’t know about yet either
  4. I never know what to cook
    The internet is your oyster, the grocery is your art supply store, and the kitchen is your canvas – make due with what you got. There have to be recipes that you can go back too.
  5. I’m too tired to cook
    I promise you that meal prep is not too hard and that taking two hours of your Sunday to prep meals for the entire week will save you more time AND money than you would even account for.

OK now that we’ve gotten that out the way, let’s get into it a little more. I personally feel like, life is really busy all the time, and I can never get enough done. So when I can make something that I need to do an activity, that’s a W. I go to the grocery store at least twice a week and I gamify it by looking for the best prices on produce and meat. If I’m between a few brands for the same ingredient, I will literally calculate the cost per every 100 grams. I get my meat from a butcher, and I see regulars at the grocery store, it’s kind of fun. Have a romanticized an everyday aspect of life? Of course I have and I’ve been enjoying it.

Do you understand how rewarding it is to recreate something that you enjoyed eating at a restaurant? I will never have to spend money on Chinese bbq again – I make that stuff at home. I will never need to order nachos that are inconsistent with their toppings, or order expensive brunch at a fancy white person place, or worry about cilantro ever again because I know how to cook at the crib. THE WORLD IS IN THE PALM OF MY HANDS. But that being said, I understand that I don’t have all the kitchen equipment, I understand that I am not an amazing chef, and I understand that I don’t have all the resources. Obviously there are things that I cannot do in the kitchen. So being able to cook most of my meals at home, then treat myself to eating out every now and then, makes the dining out experience so much better.

Every time that I don’t buy a meal from a restaurant I think to myself “that’s a beer for when I go on vacation.” Granted, I don’t know when I’m going on vacation next but still, the policy still applies. Every time I don’t spend $2.50 on a patty, that goes towards the $1000 espresso maker I want to get. Eventually I will even stop buying coffee. Maybe one day, when I move out of this concrete jungle, I will have a backyard and grow a garden, which would then save me more costs. Look out for that article in the future.

My last point about knowing how to cook is that it’s just a flex. I bring my meals from home to the office, people are astonished that I whipped up some culinary explosion, while they’ve spent $20 on their salad because they wanted chicken with it. I could buy an entire chicken for less than half the price of the salad. I actually buy whole raw chickens for under $9 and take them apart myself. Knowing how to butcher your meat at home, now that’s a serious flex. Cooking is a skill that a lot of people in busy cities like Toronto don’t have. It’s an investment in effort that will pay dividends on dollars, time, and clout (lol) that you’ll earn.

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