Wednesday, July 6, 2016

For the Love of Cooking

Cooking did not always come natural for me. I learned to cook from my Grandmother, Mother, and Great-Grandmother, but that didn't mean I loved doing it. Cooking dinner every night came out of necessity to feed our growing family. Simple, right? Well, it isn't so simple for an A-type personality who strives to achieve perfection. I begrudging made dinner every night and it was pretty much the same dinners in a constant rotation. For some reason, I thought that a love for cooking should come as natural as my unconditional love for my children. Well, let's just say that I came to instantly love my little babies, but cooking was an on-going love/hate struggle for many years, until I decided to make a change...

My true love is baking. My sweet tooth always gets the better of me. There's something magical and comforting about delicately drizzled chocolate over a piece of homemade cheesecake, or a moist cupcake with buttercream frosting so smooth that it melts in your mouth. For some reason it was hard for me to appreciate the art of cooking as much as I loved baking.

Something changed after baby #2, after so many years of assuming that cooking was just not my forte. I realized that it was my own fault that I was not enjoying this art. I had never learned to love the act of cooking. Instead of understanding why I was cooking, I was making it a sterile habit. My change of heart happened one night after I tried a few new recipes from a magazine I had saved months before, but didn't want to try and fail (a bad trait of my choleric temperament). The entire process of making the dinner was actually relaxing, something I would've never imagine. My husband truly enjoyed the meal and continued to compliment me throughout the night and my low self-esteem in regards to cooking was began to disappear.

I enjoy being a stay at home my with my little ones. I even enjoy doing the daily chores around the house - it's an act of devotion that helps our family unit remain organized, so there was no reason for me not to enjoy making breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Just as I nursed all my babies, and did it as an act of love for them, so I should view cooking. It was my own fault if I lived the rest of my life being only a mediocre cook.

By no means have I become an award winning chef, but I love the challenge of trying new recipes, even if they don't always turn out perfect, at least my husband is a good sport. And I do have plenty of days when I am just not in the mood to cook, so I choose something easier and remind myself that I am doing this for the love of my family and that I am very blessed to have such a beautiful family.

"Find something you're passionate about and keep tremendously interested in it." ~ Julia Child

My favorite 30 minute roll recipe

Here is the original recipe, I just tweaked it a bit. 

1 egg
1/3 cup of olive oil
1 c 4 tbsp of warm water

2 tbsp of active dry yeast
3 1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar

Heat oven 400 degrees and move rack to the middle of oven

Combine water, oil, and yeast in mixer bowl. Let sit until the yeast bubbles (about 15 minutes).

Use a bread hook for the mixer and slowly add the egg, flour, sugar, and salt. Mix for about 2 minutes until smooth. 

Roll into balls and place in pan, but leave several inches between each roll so they can rise before being placed into the oven. Let them rest for 12 minutes. Depending on the size of the balls, bake for 10-15 minutes until golden brown. Enjoy! 

30 Minute Rolls

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