… (and I’m not talking about the knives). Do you play it safe in the kitchen? Are you a must-follow-the-rules kind of person? I always thought I was pretty much like that, but I’ve come to realise that I’m actually a bit of a risk-taker when it comes to cooking and baking. Shhh, don’t tell anyone …
At high school and later at Uni I studied science – physics, chemistry, biology, botany, zoology, geology … I’m probably missing a few, but the point is that I studied a whole range. Out of all of them it was probably chemistry which taught me the importance of precision in both following instructions and the measurement of liquid chemicals. A lot of that knowledge found its way into my cooking habits … well, to a certain extent anyway.
I still measure liquid ingredients properly and even invested in some scales a few years back so I could weigh the solid stuff! But apart from that I seem to apply a much more relaxed attitude towards my cooking … Here’s a little taste of what I get up to:
- Once I’ve made something by carefully following the recipe, every time after that I tend to just ‘play it by ear’.
- I don’t always sift flour.
- Near enough is
sometimesoften good enough for me. For example, if something has a teaspoon of salt, I probably won’t measure it and just guess at the amount.
- When a recipe calls for melted butter I never use a stove-top saucepan, instead I melt my butter in a glass bowl which I place in a sink filled with boiling water (it involves less cleaning and requires less effort).
- I always replace dairy milk with soy milk (there’s no cow milk in my house).
Goodness, my high school ‘Home Economics’ teacher would be so proud (not). I never really liked her much, but I’m sure she’d be happy to know that I still follow two of her kitchen rules of thumb – ‘always gradually add liquid to dry’, and ‘be mean with the dry and kind with the liquid ingredients’ … what a strange subject that now seems to have ‘studied’ at school.
Perhaps my dangerous approach to cooking can mostly be put down to laziness or convenience, but I like to think that some of it’s due to the rush of adrenaline that comes from not playing by the rules and still achieving a great end result. Care to join me in a little culinary risk-taking?? (I’ll even let you share in the finished product).