I’ve always enjoyed cooking. Growing up in Barbados I have so many memories for as long as I can remember.
These are all things you too will enjoy doing also, so I will share with you some basics, I hope you learn something.
This may seem like a lot to take in all at once so please come back often and read this article again, this is what my readers do and it works.
I enjoy good old time Bajan cooking because the recipes are very rich in flavour, I think it’s a Caribbean thing.
So with that being said let’s dive in.
It’s About Quality Control
Being a good cook and having experimented with many different types of food means that I know how I like my food cooked, and often I enjoy meals that I cook more than I will enjoy a meal at a restaurant.
Barbados I must admit has some really good chefs; I know because I like to eat out often just to get ideas for new recipes.
It’s pretty disappointing to spend good money on a meal only to get it and think how much better I could have done making it.
Also, when you’re shopping for ingredients you can control the quality and cut corners where the effect will be minimal, but buy quality ingredients where it matters; fresh vegetables, quality meat, etc.
For fresh vegetables and fruits head on down to the Vendors Market located just off the Mighty Grynner Highway. Don’t forget to grab those fresh herbs and spices.
It is unquestionably cheaper to cook at home than it is to go out to eat. As long as you plan out your meals so that you don’t have a lot of ingredients to go to waste, you can stretch your budget much further by cooking at home, especially when tipping comes into play.
I know I said I eat out regularly but this for me is to get ideas for new recipes as I mentioned before but we can all agree eating out will add up.
Making people happy
Two weeks ago, I invited my brother, his wife, and their 3 children over for dinner at my new place. I went a little overboard – I cooked rice and peas, stew pork, gourmet Shepherd’s Pie, and by that I mean it was filled with all the goodies.
I had some sweet potatoes so I did one of my favorite dishes – yes I did Sweet Potato Pie with fresh pineapple from my friend’s house she gave me that same day. She has a lovely garden and often enjoys bringing her produce over.
At the end of the meal, everybody loved it. Seeing them all happily eating and exclaiming that this was the best meal they’ve probably ever eaten was a huge payoff.
I would have spent significantly more if I was to treat them to dinner in a restaurant. What made it even better was eating in the comfort of my own home, we could be as loud as we wanted, take as much time as we wanted, and go outside after dinner to talk and lounge around.
Cooking is an important skill
You don’t need to be a gourmet chef, actually, my cooking skills came from watching my mother, but I highly suggest that everyone at least learn how to make a couple of simple meals.
A big part of why I think some people never learn is because they are intimidated.
It does take practice to understand flavour combinations, timing, how to tell when something is done, etc., but if you start with simple recipes (the “dump everything in a crockpot” recipes are a great place to start) you can slowly build those skills while still realizing the benefits immediately.
Food brings people together, and I love that. I love taking raw ingredients and turning them into a night full of laughter, full bellies, and satisfaction.