I call this blog " a common sense cooking blog, for regular people." I started it when my kids moved out, so that they could get the family recipes, and then discovered that I was enjoying figuring out these recipes, so even after I'd managed to post pretty much all of them, I kept going.
Like my garden, I don't really know anything about cooking, despite being, I think, quite a good cook. My baking is a little hit-or-miss still, but I can learn that.
And that's the point.
How good do you have to be to make your own homemade meals for your family?
It's the same thing that struck me when I started participating in gardening communities on line. People seemed to know so much- which plants need acid and which need base (as opposed to my method, which was--that plant didn't do so well with the peat, maybe I'll try bone meal.) How much sun they got. The scientific name, the genus, the family. I'd been growing tomatoes, peppers and eggplants for 15 years before I ever heard the term "solanum." And yet, somehow, I managed to grow tomatoes, peppers and eggplants just fine. Still a little hazy on which ones are the "brassicas" but I figured out the "cucurbits" right away, once I'd learned the word.
I don't know how to make a roux. I can't chop vegetables super fast. I apparently committed a terrible sin by drying my herbs in the microwave (I guess the heat destroys the enzymes, but won't the heat from cooking do that too?) for which I was publicly admonished by some locavore guru (offers sheepish grin, goes right back to microwave drying herbs, because it's fast and space-saving).
I can make a mean veggie lasagna, and tomato sauce from scratch. My chicken soup is to die for and I roll my own dolmades. And yet, one of the favorite dishes that my kids absolutely love is just noodles with butter and cheese. And that's good enough.
Everybody's favorite noodles
Any kind of noodle--spaghetti, pasta, egg, rotini, etc.
3-4 tablespoons of butter
"sprinkle cheese" i.e. grated Parmesan or Romano
Cook the noodles according to package directions; drain, but leave them in the pot. Melt the butter, allowing it to brown very slightly. Add grated cheese to taste, plus salt and pepper. And that's it. You can add a green like broccoli or spinach, but mostly we ate it as is with some peas on the side.
If you want it to be a little more politically correct, do this with your own spaetzel.
15 hours ago