Leaving home to go to university comes with a lot of pressure. Suddenly, you’re loaded with financial independence, deadlines, new relationships and, perhaps the most terrifying responsibility of all, you have to cook for yourself!
If you can’t cook, and the possibility of doing so strikes fear into your heart, don’t panic. Below, we’ve listed just a few of our suggestions as to why you might have struggled with cooking in the past and what you can do to go from fumbling fresher to fantastic foodie.
You’re too ambitious
Many of us have made the same mistake. You’re looking online for a fun, new recipe to try and stumble upon something that sounds easy enough. However, in practice, it proves a disaster. For someone who is new to cooking, ambition is a sure-fire way to flambé your confidence. Dodge this common error by staying wary of your ability, and master the basics first. Student staples such as pasta make for the perfect entry-level dish.
You haven’t found your speciality
Any competent cook worth their weight in salt has a specialty dish. Finding a tasty recipe that you’re confident with is the perfect starting point to experiment with flavours, and test new methods of cooking. Having a specialty will also help to build your confidence, and stop a defeatist mentality in its tracks. Find a recipe that you know you’ll love, perhaps using a recipe generator, and spend some time perfecting it. This will build your cooking confidence and help you get to grips with the basics.
You don’t have the right equipment
Ever got half way through a recipe before realising you don’t have the right equipment to do the job properly? You’re not alone. Invest in some staple kitchen equipment, such as a pan, saucepan and a high quality-chopping knife. Shed any preconceptions about needing a whole host of expensive cooking gear, as just a few essentials will do the job. If you’re on a tight budget, invest in a paella pan. This will cook your food as well as any other saucepan, but is large enough to prepare meals in bulk.
You’re restricted by your appliances
It’s not the case for everyone, but many university residences will have low quality cooking appliances. Poor quality ovens and hobs can leave even seasoned chefs seeing red, so don’t feel disheartened if you think your appliances are spoiling your food. Fortunately, there are some quick fixes you can try. Tips such as adjusting the recipe cooking times and regularly rotating and stirring food to distribute the heat more evenly will make a huge difference. Or you can get some affordable kitchen appliances at velovision.co.uk.
You’re a defeatist
Cooking takes time, patience and practice. Our final tip is don’t let failed attempts deter you from trying again. Even the best chefs in the world have burnt a dish at some time in their lives, so take every bad meal as a learning curve. There are no bad cooks, just good cooks in the making!