There is no question that the Food Network has advanced my abilities to cook. What started as a need to make some cookies for a team party for my daughter's softball team, graduated to different breads from a bread maker and then, thanks to the Food Network, I not only expanded my knowledge of food, but also expanded the techniques to cook food.
People now say I am a good cook, but I think I have an ability to follow a recipe. What I am good at is being able to look at a recipe and determining if my family and friends will like the result. I now review hundreds of recipes from all sources (Food Network, Epicurious, Google Search and magazines) and pick out a few that I think will please my family and mostly myself. 95% of the time, I get rave comments from the food consumer.
In my mind three things are required to produce a decent meal.
- Good Equipment - Having good pans, spoons and mixers makes all cooking easier and more fun.
- Good Ingredients - When a recipe has only a few ingredients, it is crucial to make sure that each of those ingredients are of top quality.
- Simple Recipes - If you have good ingredients, the more simple the recipe the better. Complicated recipes make things difficult and mistakes are easily made. Simple does not mean short, as many great recipes call for long cooking times. By simple I mean easy to do. Let the artistic chefs create those multi layer goose liver pates.