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Cooking & Baking Tips for a New Bride

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Hi everyone,

My niece is getting married and I thought I would give her some kitchen tips. Her mother doesn't cook and I'm the one the girls turn to for anything food related. If it was your niece what would you say?

Thanks!

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  1. don't but cheap cookware... pay a bit extra and you'll have pans/trays/dutch ovens for life.

    and

    Don;t be scared to try something new... if you bugger it up, there's always take out...

    1. Start by buyng her a cuople of basic cook books...Joy of Cooking. King Arthur makes some excellent books on baking. Maybe another book by either Julia Child or James Beard

      2 Replies
      1. re: nyfoodjoe

        I think Joy of Cooking is a bit of an advanced book simply because it has no pictures and assumes the reader understands what the techniques are.

        There's a cookbook I like called Cooking Class..can't recall the author...but it's great. Has big photos of each step you take to make all sorts of food. I think it's great for a beginner.

        I also agree with the no cheap cookware. And the importance of fresh ingredients. If she's young and begins cooking out of a box, she'll never learn the real way to make things.

        1. re: OrganicLife

          Jamie Oliver's books are also really simple (a handful of this and a pinch of that) which is great for "first time" cooks. His recipes are often quick and simple. My "can't cook / won't cook" husband has mad a few fantastic dishes from these books.

      2. Agreed about the cheap cookware. Also, any meal that only requires one dish or pan is a winner- Julia, who makes you use every bowl, pot, and pan in your kitchen, notwithstanding.

        1. One of the best gifts you could give her is to gather recipes from all the relatives who cook and put them together in a cookbook. My mom did that for a cousin of mine who got married last fall, and it was much appreciated.

          3 Replies
          1. re: revsharkie

            great idea!!! very personal, could be added to generation by generation, handed down

            1. re: nyfoodjoe

              That I agree also is a great idea.In the old cookbook i have,A Thousand Ways to Please a Husband by Helen Cowles LeCron from the 1900s,Bettina our heroine is making up a box or recipe cards for a friend who is getting married,with recipes and menu suggestions,etc.
              It's a quaint little book,and each chapter has some story in regards to Bettina and her husband and their friends and relatives,which is then followind by a suggested menu and the recipes for that menu.There is also a follow up one called A Thousand Ways to Please a Family by the same author and also is in the same style of the first one.

              1. re: nyfoodjoe

                I am in complete agreement with revsharkie. I have begun to put my recipes together my sons girlfriends that they've been together with for a few years and probably will marry if I'm lucky! But one of my sons, the youngest wants it now.
                All the recipes he grew up and loves. And was very clear about which ones to leave out. NO peanut sauce!!
                So I love that you could share your own recipes with her, start a tradition!

            2. I would advise her to involve her new hubby in the kitchen from day one. If she can get him involved and enthusiastic now, she'll have a great asset in the kitchen for life. It's always so great when couples prepare food together, a real bonding experience. However, if she establishes the kitchen as her domain right now, it will probably remain this way for now and ever whether she likes it or not.
              This is assuming of course he is not already est'd in the kitchen, in which case, she's a super lucky gal

              1. Alton Brown's "I'm Just Here For The Food" gives a lot of technical instruction and Bittman's "How To Cook Everything" is also sort of a good instruction manual for a beginning cook.

                As for advice, "A recipe is just a guideline." Don't be afraid to experiment, modify, combine ingredients from other recipes...

                1. In addition to the family/friends cookbook, I'd stock her spice cabinet, with a note for each spice suggesting what kinds of dishes use it as well the types of ingredients it tends to pair and combine with best.