Is there anything that you practice? My sons used to have football practice to get ready for Friday nights. My daughter had tennis lessons and practice for meets, but “practice” seems to be an activity mostly for kids and teens. I don’t hear many adults saying, “I’ve got practice tonight.”
When I think of practice I think of music lessons, and if you were to visit my home, you’d immediately see a piano. That’s because I grew up playing piano, my dad played “by ear” and I wanted my children to play,too. After all, I took lessons from first grade through my senior year in high school. To my dismay, none of the kids stayed with their lessons.
You would think that I’d be an amazing piano player after all of those years of lessons, but I’m not. I mean, back in the day I was pretty good, but I always had to read the music and even that had its limits. I never really caught onto how to read the bass clef, but I could generally work it out.
These days I’m pretty rusty and that’s because I don’t play very often. My piano needs tuning and I’m so out of practice that it is kind of difficult and my playing doesn’t flow like I want it to. As a result, it’s a little frustrating, and a bit like “work”, so I just don’t do it.
What does this have to do with cooking? New skills take practice, including cooking. To become a better cook, be willing to make mistakes and try again. I know you were told not to play with your food; do it anyway, because cooking improves with practice. Practicing the art of cooking.
Sometimes cooking feels like work and can be a little bit frustrating, too, especially when we are tired, hungry, and others are expecting something to eat. But the phrase “practice makes perfect” applies to cooking, too, or to anything really.
As a teacher, I’ve noticed that students want to be good at a lesson or skill the first time they try something, and frequently feel discouraged if they are not successful. Some want to throw up their hands and give up because it didn’t work the first time, believing that they’ll never be able to do it. Others are more willing to try again and push through not being the best, to see if they can get better.
No recipe is going to be perfect for every cook because we each have our own skill-set in the kitchen. Practice with recipes that sound good to you- they may turn out exactly right. Many times recipes are written without much seasoning, so experimenting with different spices is another way to play around with food.
Everyone starts as a beginner. Some of us have been cooking and practicing for longer, that’s all! We all need time in the kitchen to practice the craft of cooking. That’s how to become a better cook. And if you need some help, I’d love to have you join a cooking class or two, so you can become everybody’s favorite cook!