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I would cook more if…

How would you complete this sentence? Personally, I’d cook more if I didn’t have to prep or clean up. So time-consuming! I often cook in bulk for canning and freezing and that means a lot of extra time for prep and clean-up.

Also I’d cook more if there weren’t lingering odors for certain dishes. Been wanting to make French onion soup but hate the thought that the house will reek for days. In warmer weather I can open doors and windows but that won’t work in the winter.

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  1. I'd cook more if I had more time. My work and commute time cuts into the cooking time, sadly.

    2 Replies
    1. re: pinehurst

      2nd more time, and also if I had more money. Being on a tight budget means making large batches of cost-effective foods that I know I can make and know will be eaten. If I could afford some more splurgy products and could afford to throw something away if I botched a new, complicated recipe, I'd definitely cook more.

    2. I would cook more if I didn't have a job. I love the weekends - I devote much of my time to cooking and it's a lovely break from the hectic work week for me. I love the entire process. It usually starts off with a cup of coffee as I stroll the store, get home with the new goodies, then I am known to research not only ingredients but cooking methods and cooking science quite extensively. I even love the prep, I could do without the clean up though. It's such a big passion of mine and a pretty time-consuming hobby when I devote the energy that I would like to it. I find that the energy invested usually turns out a great product and is great to improve dishes I've already made. Even the blunders that don't turn out as hoped are fun in retrospect. That being said, I also have times when I'm not interested in a log prep session but during the week I cook nearly every meal as I just find the food more satisfying although cooking can include throwing a salad together or some sauteed grown beef and veggies but I love the process and the results. So, I guess I would cork more how I like to cook on the weekends during the weekdays if I didn't have a lovely 14-16 hour job.

      1. I would cook more if I didn't have a deep freezer. When it gets full we start eating it down. I don't know how I ever used to work 50 hours a week, commute an hour/hour and 1/2 each way, then cook every night- back when we only had a fridge with the little freezer on top.

        I proudly say that I do not do dishes. Even though I no longer work.

        1. I would cook more if it wasn't so easy to eat out. We tend to eat out when we have tired ourselves out with yard work, or have been so busy we simply want to sit and be served.

          And then there are times when the pantry seems awfully bare.

          But, I am trying to cook more and better meals because I think my home cooking is healthier than what I find "out."

          1. More time for me as well. Also hate kitchen odors especially anything burnt and fried fish.

            1. ... if I worked in a restaurant kitchen.

              1. I would cook more if I didn't gain weight at the drop of a hat (or pot roast...haha). I really have to calorie restrict and work out to keep my weight in check. Even that is difficult (must be the wine).

                I do spend lots of time in the kitchen with my CSA veg bag and preparing salads that I store to take to work. I/we grill a ton and I make soups in the winter. I would just like to work on making dishes that aren't "diet" friendly. Maybe in my next life! For now, I will enjoy being in my kitchen every spare moment preparing healthier fare.

                3 Replies
                1. re: pagesinthesun

                  This. Although it might be more accurate to say that I would cook more interesting dishes if we didn't have to follow a fairly low-carb diet to maintain our weight. I cook every day, but it's pretty much meat and vegetables at least five days a week.

                  1. re: biondanonima

                    Well said. I spend tons of time in the kitchen finding new ways to prepare veggies. And, lots of time on the grill with proteins.

                    It's just all the wonderful dishes discussed here that I would rather be cooking. Despite this my time in the kitchen is always relaxing.

                    1. re: pagesinthesun

                      In my world, I have found that I get my moments of Zen either in my kitchen or in the ocean.

                2. I cook a lot already, but I too would cook more if I didn't have a job... or at least one with less commute... I work 9-6 and it's an hourish each way. We already eat dinner pretty late, but I'd like to be able to do more complicated dishes more than just on weekends.

                  1. Had more time and didn't have to clean up. I love cooking...even love prep work, but I just don't have an hour or more every evening to put into it. On the weekends when I can, I do cooking marathons....heaven.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: jlhinwa

                      I live for the weekend cooking marathons, what a delight.

                    2. I would cook more if _______ (name your favorite mythical magical creature) came along and cleaned up the kitchen afterwards.

                      1. I would cook more if my wife was not such a fussy eater. Her repertoire of entrees is mainly confined to Italian because of her heritage and upbringing. I'm more omnivorous and eat more diverse entrees from different ethnic origins.

                        For example, today's lunch which I prepared for myself consisted of 2 quesadillas filled with cheese, sliced ham and 1/2 of a 2-egg omelet in each quesadilla. My wife would not even taste one.

                        I also like Asian food. Forgetaboutit!

                        10 Replies
                        1. re: ChiliDude

                          Though I would eat everything you described in paragraph 2, your wife would really have liked to marry me. I could really eat Italian every day, and I love to cook it.

                          Be careful a member of the food police doesn't grab you by the balls and twist for saying "Asian food." I got read the riot act last week for not being specific about which of the 1300 different Asian cuisines I was talking about.

                            1. re: Jay F

                              Hahaha, I witnessed the aforementioned ball twisting and felt your pain. I get why "Asian food" is just too broad a statement though. Like saying you like American food or don't like European food. :-D

                              I'd cook more labor intensive dishes if I had a sous chef, a housekeeper and a husband who wasn't just as happy with a cheeseburger as homemade tamales. No, I'll keep DH. He'll eat anything and loves my cooking. I appreciate that. But a sous chef would be fun sometimes.

                              1. re: ItalianNana

                                I miei antenati non erano italiani. Ho visto la pasta abbastanza per tre vite!

                                1. re: ItalianNana

                                  My ancestors were not italian either. My childhood community was heavily Italian though and I married an Italian. I too have eaten enough pasta for 3 lives and never tired of it. Ciou!

                              2. re: ChiliDude

                                Me too...in my case it's the BF; I made jasmine rice for the first time since the two years we've been together and he just didn't like it. When my kids lived at home, at one time, it was the only type of rice we ate it was so good. Now, they're gone and it's just the two of us; there is so much he won't touch that I love that I find myself making two separate meals sometimes.

                                I grew up in NYC and my palate is used to multi-cultural fare, the bf, on the other hand is from the south and for the most part, won't venture too much outside of his region... I'd cook more if I had someone who could appreciate my style of food to cook for on a regular. Which is why I welcome cooking for likeminded others

                                1. re: Cherylptw

                                  I belong to the "What if...?" school of cooking specializing in "Cuisine impromptu." That means I'm not afraid to combine ingredients that I've never before combined.

                                  When I do that with leftovers for myself, my wife just looks and shakes her head. The combination is not anything she would touch.

                                  1. re: ChiliDude

                                    Sometimes he'll ask what it is that I'm eating and decide he wants to try it but I love it when he says, I don't eat this or that...and I think, oh yes you do, you just dont know it!

                                    1. re: Cherylptw

                                      Yes!! A good friend is like this. I'm like oh really, well you ate x or y or z and loved it and didn't know.

                                2. re: ChiliDude

                                  My condolences. Not to insert myself in your life, but if Mr Mr wasn't an open culinary mind with a tendency to clean up, not usre if it would have worked out.

                                3. My sister didn't live hundreds of miles away and my best friend from grad school didn't live thousands of miles away. They are the only two people I enjoy cooking with and we have a blast when we get together in the kitchen!

                                  Or if I had a generous trust fund or megabucks lottery winnings that would allow me to pay off the mortgage and buy all the foods I love to cook and give me the time to host regular dinner parties without having to worry about money.

                                  1. If I didn't have little kids in the house. I have a three year old and two year old twins. Even though they will eat pretty much anything, they just do not let me have the time I need to enjoy cooking. Right now cooking dinner is simply about the healthiest meal I can make that doesn't take too much time or prep. Hopefully the next few years will bring me more time in the kitchen.

                                    1. I'd cook more if I weren't chronically ill or in chronic pain. Ah well.

                                      2 Replies
                                        1. re: ChiliDude

                                          Thanks. It's just how the cookie crumbles. :)

                                      1. I would change this sentence a smidge because I cook almost every night.

                                        I would *enjoy* cooking more if my kids had more adventurous palettes. They're teenagers and while they will eat practically any animal protein (duck and quail are high on their lists), they eschew any composed dish. Curries, casseroles, sauces...anything where one foodstuff is combined with another. I have gotten them to eat stew and even gumbo, but they use a fork to pick out the chunks of meat and veggies (when pressed), not spoons to enjoy the whole mouthful at once.

                                        1 Reply
                                        1. re: Christina D

                                          I feel your pain. My kids are grown now, but the "no sauce" years still haunt me. It was so frustrating to have to cook and have anything other than plain food be rejected.

                                          I would cook more now if there were more hours in the day.

                                        2. . . . I ate four or five meals a day.

                                          1. ... I was at home more often. 150+ nights annually in a hotel room makes it hard to be a cook. Oh, I would also cook more if I lived where it was always warm. I am a outdoor, "cooks with fire" kid of guy, though that does not keep me away from the stove and oven. Now you have me wanting to get out of this hotel in snow-covered central Indiana and get home and cook something. Alas, not for at least another 5 days...

                                            1. ...somebody else always cleaned up and did the dishes.

                                              1 Reply
                                              1. cook more if......our maid quit

                                                3 Replies
                                                  1. re: beevod

                                                    you cook she cleans up, what could be better than that? LOL

                                                  2. ...someone other than me bought all the groceries. Uhf'da that gets expensive, fast.

                                                    2 Replies
                                                    1. re: Aramek

                                                      I'm confused. If you have to eat (or maybe you just don't eat) it is hard to see how it would be cheaper than having your cook it yourself. Going out, even with fast food "dollar meals" adds up fast.

                                                      1. re: KaimukiMan

                                                        Not everywhere. In Singapore, many people find it significantly cheaper to eat all meals out. Granted, there are places where you can get a filling-for-the-husband meals for S$4... Nearly all food here is imported and expensive.

                                                    2. I would cook more if I didn't have a job that provided me with a dining plan to eat prepared food for three meals a day (or more).

                                                      2 Replies
                                                        1. re: EWSflash

                                                          Ha, it's convenient (and obviously a money-saver -- also part of my compensation) but it can be tiring as well. The food is ok but pretty pedestrian; it's on a college campus but most items are better than other college campuses I've lived/worked at, IMO. We have a much better on-campus market, including imported items, a decent amount of ethnic ingredients, and fresh produce.

                                                      1. I'd cook more if my work schedule and volunteer obligations weren't so irregular.
                                                        Fortunately, DH does the cleanup in exchange for having tasty meals. He insists!

                                                        1. If I planned ahead better, if my husband would eat at home, if we had people over more often, if the grandkids would actually eat real food, and if I had help with prep & cleanup, I would probably cook a lot more. As it is, I cook mainly just for myself or the kinds of things you can bring to pot lucks - and it just takes so long to do all the prep & cleanup that it gets a bit daunting at times.

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: eepi


                                                            I do feel for you. One of the top 3 joys of my life is feeding the people I love with food they love. My 3 Grandkids are little but good eaters. DH is an "enthusiastic" eater and the least fussy man on the planet. One could even say almost indiscriminate. He doesn't get why I spend hours pouring over recipes or cooking new things. Nor does he have any interest in cooking. :-( But he enjoys my food, loves leftovers and does dishes! :-)

                                                          2. I pretty much cook as much as I want right now, including monthly "feed the freezer" get togethers with a friend. We eat pretty much all meals at home as family and bring our lunches to work. I am able to get more creative on the weekends which I love!

                                                            However I would do more experimental cooking and/or more involved cooking if there was more hours in the day or more (non work) days in the week.

                                                            1. I fell in love, quit running, quit smoking, and started cooking all in one fell swoop. I gained about 75 pounds doing it, too.

                                                              I'd cook more if I got off work earlier. Maybe. Getting off work and going home to cook a spectacular home-cooked meal that won't be done until eight pm is a recipe for fatness. Because after eating, all you want to do is go to bed because you have to get up at 6 or earlier. Bad juju, but pretty easy to get used to, I'm sayin'.

                                                              1. I would cook more if I still had someone to cook for.

                                                                1 Reply
                                                                1. re: Querencia

                                                                  Yes, I would, too. I appreciate it when I cook, but it's not the same.

                                                                2. I would cook more if I didn't have to clean. But also if I had more people eating my cooking. My family doesn't really eat much American foods (we are Vietnamese). So it is really hard to cook just for me and can't really freeze since there never seems to be any space.

                                                                  1. I would cook more if I could cook less. Specifically, I would cook more often if I could finally recalibrate my resistant brain to make smaller amounts for a household now consisting of only Mr. Cay and me. We've been able to adapt to everything else about empty-nesting but this little detail. Years of growing kids and their lunches and the friends coming for dinner, and so on has left a well-worn rut that I just don't seem to be able to get out of when assessing the amount of food I need to prepare. Oof. Gotta work on that.

                                                                    1. Many shared sentiments. I appreciate your replies.

                                                                      1. I would cook more if I have more time and energy.

                                                                        1. If my hands would cooperate. The other day just beating eggs briefly for an omelet was enough to cause cramping.

                                                                          Slowly retraining myself and finding alternative ways to do things. Convenience items like TJ's frozen chopped leeks help too since a dish with a lot of chopping has become difficult. I was eying their mirepoix but just couldn't do it. Looked to dried out and expensive for what it is. On good days I chop extra and freeze!

                                                                          1. i didn't work outside the home.