Adventures in Cooking

I knew along the way of my quest to get healthy and change my lifestyle I would have to become more adventurous with my food.  Limiting processed foods meant I had to start learning to cook.  Increasing my intake of fruits and vegetables meant I needed to try new things.

I can only use the excuse of “I just moved” and “I’m settling into my job” for so long.  It’s been two months.  Am I completely settled in my job?  No.  Do I still have no idea where some things are and unorganized closets?  Yes.  Are these good excuses to not continue on my healthy eating journey?  No.

It’s easy to come up with excuses and I’m very good at it but this week I wasn’t going to let myself off the hook.  I was going to try a new recipe.  I was originally going to do pasta with a creamy red pepper sauce but found a recipe for a creamy cauliflower sauce in my Thug Kitchen cookbook that caught my eye plus I already had a head of cauliflower on hand so less ingredients to buy.

The one ingredient that gave me a struggle was miso paste.

Struggle #1  I don’t know what it is…
Struggle #2  I don’t know where to find it…
Struggle #3  None of the grocery stores around here carry it…WalMart, Trader Joes,

In my little sheltered cocoon of small-town thinking I had not even thought about a specialty store.  Early Saturday morning I decided I would first check Winco because I know they have a good variety plus I needed to go there anyways.  Having no luck at Winco I googled and found a large Asian market right down the street from where I work.  I walked right to the miso paste and picked up a tub.  I’m open to recipes with miso paste because my recipe called for one teaspoon and I got this…….

IMG_0112The smallest container I could find but I think it lasts a long time and at the least I know I can make soup with it.

After picking up my miso paste I decided to roam around for a little bit just to see what was available.  I was resisting the urge to impulse by because I was so drawn in by all the fun packaging.  I should warn my family members not to be surprised when they get weird candies for Christmas.

IMG_0108

Yes, sometimes I have a 12 year old’s sense of humor…Don’t judge me too harshly

IMG_0106

Not a clue what these are but they made me smile

IMG_0110

These are liquid and squishy not solid like I originally thought before I touched the package


IMG_0125Once I pulled myself away from the fun brightly colored packages I headed home to prep my dinner.

I got my ingredients together and cut up the cauliflower so later that night I could just cook everything.  It was supposed to be blended and I was going to buy a cheap blender but forgot so I had to improvise, basically smashing with a spoon and whisking.  The sauce was not as blended as it should have been but still good and it’s definitely a recipe I’ll try again.

Even though I proclaim I hate cooking I love finding new uses for familiar ingredients.  A year ago I never would’ve thought about making a sauce from cauliflower and I definitely wouldn’t have thought it would taste good.

My goal continues to be trying one new recipe a week.  I still wouldn’t say I love cooking but I’m kind of enjoying it.

I have horrible knife skills and a professional chef would laugh watching me try to cut up even the simplest things.  This morning it was mincing garlic.  I finally broke down, googling “how to mince garlic” but I’m glad I did because I learned a new technique and was proud of myself.

Who knows?  Maybe one day I’ll be dazzling people with my knife skills and proclaiming how much I love cooking 😀

Image from Thug Kitchen Cookbook

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