I hear the same thing time and time again – “I hate cooking.” Why do we have a negative relationship with preparing food? Practicing gratitude for the beautiful flavours we have available to us is a wonderful place to start. Having said that, this may not be enough for a shift in mindset to happen.
Here are some tips to change our perspective and enjoy the art of cooking.
Cook In A Space You Enjoy:
Is our kitchen messy, crowded or cluttered? Having a cooking space where we feel unease or angst is likely to set us up for failure. Takeout and frozen meals will seem more desirable as they take less time to prepare. Who would want to spend an hour cooking in a kitchen that feels awkward? It’s crucial to set up for success when trying new habits.
Optimize Space In The Kitchen By:
- Putting away things that are barely used
- Donating/selling items you have not used in the last year (to free up extra space)
- Cleaning the counters (cleanliness = stillness)
- Brightening up the space with plants, pictures or fun decorations
The more we enjoy a space, the more likely we will want to spend time there.
Become Curious About New Flavours:
How many spices do we use when we’re cooking? Do we avoid certain recipes that appear complicated (due to calling for many spices)? Do we omit certain spices if we don’t have them because it “will not make a difference”?
We are very fortunate to have access to a vast array of herbs and spices. While you’re cooking with any spice, pay attention to what you are smelling. Are the flavours earthy, spicy, bitter or sharp? Get descriptive and begin to notice the flavours that come with different spices. Curiosity is the key ingredient to creating passion in our lives.
Cook With Fresh Foods:
When at all possible, always opt for fresh foods over packaged ones. The punch of flavours in fresh vegetables and herbs may astound you! I know when I use fresh herbs, my whole house smells heavenly for hours afterwards. Concerned about having fresh herbs leftover? No worries! Add them to a salad or a beverage of your choice. Click here (https://www.treehugger.com/things-do-leftover-herbs-4858050) for an entire blog post dedicated to leftover herbs.
Opt To Cook With Locally Produced Items:
When we try fresh, local products instead of packaged ones, we will taste (and feel) the difference. Local foods are generally made by smaller companies whose owners are a part of the entire process. There is love in local eats that we cannot find in ones created in a factory. Consuming anything made with love will fill our bodies with the same energy.
Create A Cooking “Experience”:
Instead of wishing, we were somewhere else, get immersed in cooking. When we remain present and give all of our attention to the task at hand, our enjoyment of the job will skyrocket. Hate slicing vegetables? Practice these techniques the next time you’re chopping:
- Observe the colours of the foods (make comparisons, get creative!)
- Make note of the textures felt (smooth, coarse, rough, etc)
- Listen to the beautiful sounds (slicing an onion will never sound the same again)
- Smell and appreciate the freshness, pick out notes of flavour
- Practice gratitude for the opportunity to cook fresh, beautiful foods
These tips can be applied to any part of the cooking process. Notice when we are mindful of cooking, we will start to enjoy the process much more. True enjoyment comes from life when we are present and grateful for the seemingly “simple” things.
Try out these techniques and let me know how they work for you!