A Question For You All, And An Observation. - Learning To Cook Blog at Allrecipes.com - 288083

Learning To Cook

A Question For You All, And An Observation. 
Nov. 7, 2012 5:40 am 
Updated: Dec. 5, 2012 1:44 pm
First, thanks to those people who have been commenting on my blog. It makes writing a bit more fun when you know that people are reading, and thinking about what you write. In the words of Luna Lovegood, "It's like having friends."

What I would like to know is, what direction in learning to cook should I take now that I have learned to deal with the perfect food, eggs? What is a basic skill that every cook needs to master? I was thinking about doing a series on stocks, but maybe a series on mother sauces would be more instructive. Do any of you have suggestions for me?

Finally, as an observation, it seems to me that the comment system that the blog uses leaves a bit to be desired. It would be nice to be able to reply to comments as well as be informed when people leave comments. A method of sending a message might be nice too, then again it might be bothersome as well. What do you think about these suggestions, and to whom do I write in order to make these desires known?
Nov. 7, 2012 6:19 am
> "What is a basic skill that every cook needs to master?" Not Everything Gets Cooked On "HIGH". About The "comment system" Most people use the "Recipe Buzz" to have some sort of conversations. It is not perfect but it is another tool.
Nov. 7, 2012 8:21 am
Yes, I have violated that recommendation in the past! Rushing things doesn't work well often. Having good cookware helps in this regard as well, as does a decent cook-top.
Nov. 7, 2012 8:30 am
Stocks and sauces was just what I was going to suggest. And KingSparta is quite right!
Nov. 7, 2012 8:33 am
challenging desserts?
Nov. 7, 2012 9:53 am
Alrighty then! It sounds like the next journey will be mother sauces and derivatives. Unless someone else pipes in?
Nov. 7, 2012 9:54 am
Challenging desserts? I just finished learning to cook eggs! What's a challenging dessert? :)
Nov. 7, 2012 10:03 am
been following along with your blongs-had a few chuckles, thanks. What every cook needs to master? How to read a recipe and interpret what it means. Days gone by had cook books or real recipe boxes stuffed full of hand me down recipes over the generations. Community cook books were made up of tried and true recipes submitted from elsewhere. New technology and cyber world has brought us to sites like this. Many people wanting to be published, old recipes with new names, submitted recipes from the backs of packages and cans. And why not? The recipe is good. Trying to invent recipes is the tricky part, too much baking powder and the taste is off, not enough and it does not rise. Making bread and do not allow it to rest, rise and and punch it down properly, no problem, add more yeast, gluten or other fake ingredients. It all works. Not. Get back to the basics of cooking, and 15-100 variations of a recipe can come from 1 simple recipe, they used to be called foot notes, now they are NEW and improved recipes:) Enjoy whatever you decide to do, we will enjoy reading them
Nov. 7, 2012 10:06 am
Right on, RNG!
Nov. 7, 2012 11:29 am
I agree with Mamaw1! Right on RNG! Thanks for following, and especially the comment, both of you. I have my grandma's old recipe book. It is tatter and torn, but I love it!
Nov. 7, 2012 9:03 pm
You can respond to comments here, just like you are doing. As King Sparta suggested, you can "chat" with us on the recipe buzz. Any site suggestions, you may want to click on the "contact us" link down below - though the usefulness of making suggestions to the site powers that be has been questioned . . . (=
Nov. 7, 2012 9:41 pm
Knife Skills. A properly developed set of knife skills can save you hundreds of dollars on gadgets. I give you my extensive collection of dustblown gadgets to bear testament to my thinking. For the record, I have 'good' knife skills, not great. I'm working on it though and the good thing about developing your knife skills is that you can work on something else at the same time!
Nov. 8, 2012 4:44 am
Thanks gammaray, I am in agreement with you regarding the powers that be. Benevolent they are, but not seemingly responsive! Still, I am glad we have this place.
Nov. 8, 2012 4:47 am
Raedwulf, knife skills are something I sorely need, though I hadn't thought about blogging about learning those skills. I'll have to give it a think. The scene in Julie and Julia pops into my mind where Julia Childs is standing in her kitchen, furiously chopping away at the contents of a 50 pound sack of onions, the mound on the table quickly growing!
Nov. 8, 2012 6:05 am
I think attempting stocks, soups and stews would be a great choice. Since you're a hunter, I imagine you have some good meat in your freezer. Good stock makes good soup. You can use RNG advice and make up your own venison stew or chili recipe.
Nov. 8, 2012 7:51 am
LOL, I predicted Raedwulf's comment....For the record, I have 'good' knife skills, not great. I'm working on it though and the good thing about developing your knife skills is that------it is your fingers, not mine, in front of the knife blade and being counted after a good chopping session :P Sorry guys, could not resist.
Nov. 8, 2012 8:33 am
I have made a killer Edel Hirsch Gulash when I lived in Germany. It is a venison gulash that is cooked slow for a long time. It's absolutely delicious.
Nov. 9, 2012 3:56 am
How about how to properly grill a steak ? As for blog comments, there is a box to check in the buzz that tells you when someone responds there, why can't they also have that feature here ? And as for knife skills, I think I proved with my knife skills on Mother's Day that I am more than willing & able to put a little bit of myself into every meal.
Nov. 9, 2012 7:20 pm
Response to redneck gramma--Love your answer.New daughter-in-law did not know what 1/4 t. versus 1T.meant. My daughter had to teach her new sister-in-law.I constantly have at least 8-10 cookbooks by my chair.Love reading County cookbooks,church cookbooks. Oh! the good ole days.
Nov. 10, 2012 1:31 am
A must have basic skill is to know what pot or pan to use.
Nov. 11, 2012 8:24 am
Need recipies for one to be made by older lady who does not like leftovers to clutter the freezer or refrigerator.
Nov. 11, 2012 1:21 pm
Doc, I agree with Raedwulf, work on your knife skills. I was fortunate enough to take a 6-weeks basics culinary course earlier this year. First class was dedicated to knife skills and safety in the kitchen. I learned that I wasn't even holding the knife correctly. Learn, practice what you've learned, and keep your knives SHARP...that last one is sooooo important. Admittedly, I'm a kitchen gadget fanatic, but since my knife skills have improved, I've rid myself of many gadgets because I now can do that task more quickly (for example, a garlic chopper). I learned about emulsions, pasta, dough, braising, stocks, sauces (yes, a mother sauce), and so much more. The reason I took the course was to become less dependent on recipes and be a little more creative and spontaneous in the kitchen. After the course, I did a blog on AR, and one of the commenters recommended a book, The Flavor Bible, which I bought on Amazon...it has proved invaluable. It is not a recipe book, rather a guide on flavors that complement and work well together. I doubt that I’ll ever evolve beyond the intermediate cook level, but I’m learning new things every day. Best of luck to you in your cooking journey.
Nov. 11, 2012 5:01 pm
How about BAKING!?!
Nov. 12, 2012 8:39 pm
It's amazing how many great comments I got here! I may be starting in the middle instead of the beginning, but I've decided to go with stocks, and sauces first. I do need to work on knife skills. I am a terrible baker, so there's that. Finally, I am intrigued by the flavor bible, and will look that up. Thanks all for the ideas I mentioned and any that I overlooked in this comment. I will eventually address them all.
Nov. 13, 2012 11:20 am
I gave a recipe with a peanut butter batter which saying to refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours.After that I a tablespoon of batter & flatten it, add a mini sneaker bar and roll the dough around it.after baking it snake confectioners suger then drizzle choclate on top.Question,can I do the peanut butter batter & leave in in the refrigerater over nite before rolling it on sneakers bar? Thank you anyone who replys.
Nov. 14, 2012 4:51 pm
how about recipes for game meat?
Nov. 14, 2012 6:08 pm
i think that Ur right u should be able to reply back to us every time we comment on Ur blog
Nov. 14, 2012 6:10 pm
and i am bob for your info k
Nov. 14, 2012 6:11 pm
i have a question for u do all cooks have to be perfect all the time
Nov. 14, 2012 6:13 pm
to u all out there who like this site he thanks u
Dec. 1, 2012 7:45 am
Doc, maybe a good blog in the future- good substitutions. Like, if you don't have shortening, what can you use that everyone usually has? I mean, I'm the child of a bacon-greasing mother so I always have shortening. But you get the idea.
Dec. 5, 2012 1:44 pm
Sure, hyunoklee82. Like if you don't have butter milk, add a bit of lemon juice or vinegar to regular milk.
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Doc Simonson

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St. Peter, Minnesota, USA

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About Me
I'm old and smelly, kinda like a really good salami with that really nice white mould all over it.
My favorite things to cook
Meat, carbs, meat, carbs, meat, carbs and did I mention meat?
My favorite family cooking traditions
Drop a plate of Pierogis and sausages in front of me and watch my eyes glaze over in pure joy.
My cooking triumphs
Schweinebraten mit Knoedel und Krautsalat. Also Edel Hirsch Gulasch was very nice. I make killer Spaetzle and Knockerl also.
My cooking tragedies
There aren't enough electrons in cyberspace! :) Actually, the tragedies usually involve well intentioned creativity out of control.
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