Why should you read my cooking blog?
I have never wanted to have my own cooking blog, for many reasons. First of all, there are a million of them already out there, written by people with more culinary experience than me. I feel like I am still in the “learning” phase, and am definitely not an expert on any one facet of cooking. I am generally a recipe-follower and not a recipe generator.
I don’t really like cooking blogs. I’ve never followed one. Actually I’ve never followed anyone’s blog, does this make me an awful hypocrite for writing one? I never understood the point. It seems too much like watching reality TV, which I hate. Who are these people? Are they qualified to give me advice? Why do they insist on including personal information when all I wanted was a recipe? I cook because I want to, and I cook what I want. Why would I want to mimic someone else’s daily diet? Also I’m a pretty huge fan of Alton Brown and I’m sure I can learn everything I need to know in a more trustworthy and entertaining fashion from him. For being a thespian, I have never really craved the limelight like one would expect. I have a hard time believing that people would want to read about my life.
Up until recently I didn’t think anyone was going to read any of this. I figured the blog was basically just well-crafted personal emails to the only people who cared, my parents. Fortunately I have a few more readers now and that means I am even more conscious of keeping things interesting. And to the point. I have a tendency to be long-winded when I do get around to sharing my opinions (another reason I avoid writing but I will be better with “Cooking in the Shower,” after this post. I swear). Writing a well crafted entry is time intensive for me and I’ve never had this much spare time before. Besides, none of this would be happening without Andrew. Andrew created our blog and was the one who forced me to write on it, begrudgingly at first but he encouraged me to find my voice. I have decided that if this “voice” can help, inform or amuse my fellow travelers it will be worthwhile. Otherwise it is just adding to the noise.
So yeah, why am I writing this again? Like I said, I’m not an expert, and since I don’t read blogs I’m not even sure this will be unique. But I find myself in a new situation with new challenges, trying to learn about Japanese food with only the internet for my guide. Cooking every day is a challenge and can be a strain without being in a foreign country to boot. If I can make some other ALTs’ lives a little easier my time won’t be in vain. Maybe my niche can be making weekly meal menus for all you ALTs who are busy teaching. Or to inspire you to cook in spite of the fact that cooking for one’s self is much harder than cooking for others. Believe me I know, most of the time the motivation for whipping up anything more than a can of soup is simply non-existent.
Cooking is best when as a communal activity. While recipes books and cooking shows can be helpful, they are sterile. They are not interactive. They do not ask you what you need, or what you want, and definitely are not sympathetic to your budget or your schedule.
I want you to be well-nourished and empowered, not complacent and reduced to Top Ramen every night. As I move forward, please tell me how I can help. My goals are to provide cooking tips tailored to the tiny Japanese apartment but will work in a gourmet kitchen, to help your cooking become a joy and not a burden, and to convince you that home cooking really is the best choice for your budget, your health, and your soul. If this sounds up your alley then please join me in the kitchen, or should I say the shower hallway? In my apartment they are one in the same!