Cooking for Two
Cooking for two people can be a very intimate experience. Those who love food will sometimes love sharing the joy of cooking with their significant other. However, as I’ve found, sometimes two cooks is one too many. My boyfriend usually likes to cook alone and surprise me with his delicious dishes of fresh-off-the-stove goodness. There is no snitching or pre-tasting allowed.
However, a while back, my boyfriend got injured and wasn’t able to do many of the things he normally does like cook all the meals. This meant that I took over being “The Chef”. These two weeks of handling the meals ended up to be very “interesting” culinary-wise. I learned a lot, and my ever gracious boyfriend would very kindly let me know when it would be good idea to taste the soup before adding more salt (so that we wouldn’t die early of hardened arteries).
However, one of the toughest things I came up against was portion control. I grew up in a big family, and by big, I mean BIG. Cooking meals was a family affair that would last at least a few hours and require cauldrons for soup and industrial fryers for chicken. Well…that’s kind of an exaggeration, but you get the point. When we cooked, we cooked a LOT!
Since moving out to go to college, I hadn’t really done that much cooking. The two options were: Take Out and Eat Out. And when I got together with my boyfriend HE would do the cooking, so… yeah, a little rusty there.
Anyway, I would end up cooking at least enough for six people, and my leftovers usually weren’t appetizing enough to keep around and reheat another two to three times. This was wasting a lot of food, until I learned how to properly estimate how much we would eat. Here are a few tips for cooking for two people:
Cooking for Two - Plan Ahead
Planning your meals ahead of time will give you a better idea of what you are cooking so you can add in a little variety. Chicken for instance, is great – chicken everyday – not so great.
Cooking for Two - Plan for Leftovers
As I said before, my leftover were not too appetizing. However, some things you can’t really scale down, like cooking a roast chicken for example. You are probably gonna have leftovers. Use these to make roast chicken sandwiches, or add a little striped roast chicken to your salads. Some dishes, like stew and chili beans, taste great as leftovers, so making a little extra doesn’t hurt.
Cooking for Two - Cook Staples in “Bulk”
We love rice! We eat it at basically every meal. But, our counter is too small for a rice-cooker so we cook our rice on the stove. This takes a bit of time, so we cook rice for the whole day at one time, and then heat it up later when lunch and dinner role around. You could do the same thing with pasta, or any other “every meal” type of food.
Cooking for Two - Make Things Special
One good thing about cooking for so few people is that you don’t have to add much to make it taste amazing. You could add just a tiny bit of an expensive ingredient and it would probably season the whole dish. This can’t be said when you are cooking for 12. Fresh herbs from our window box revolutionized our meals and made things so much more exciting. Just a sprig here and there did the trick. Take advantage of these smaller meal portions to make things really special!
This guest post is contributed by Stacey Cavalari. She holds a B.A. in Literature and currently writes for AccessRx.com, an online facilitator for Cialis online and other safe FDA-approved medications such as Viagra. Stacey uses her research scientist skills to cover and uncover big pharma news she shares on the AccessRx Blog.
With these tips in mind, cooking for two can be fun and easy.