Home Cooking and America's Romance with Restaurants

America seems to have this love affair with eating out. Be it greasy diners, or posh restaurants, there seems to be an endless, insatiable craving for fast-prepared food. Not that I blame them. I also have my share of eating out and I enjoy the food tremendously. But that makes me wonder… what ever happened to good ole’ home cooking?

I am a home cook. Luckily for me, my husband loves what I make. The bolder I get in experimenting in the kitchen, the more he likes it (OK – I admit – he didn’t like the dish with tripe. But to his credit – he ate it!). And luckily for him, I am fond of tinkering in the kitchen, making crazy concoctions and trying out dishes.

We are regular customers of the Oriental Stores in town. We sometimes buy ingredients that we can't even pronounce. If we think it’s authentic or interesting, we stock it in our pantry and hope that someday we will be able to use it in a dish.

I am quite pleased at the outcome of The Next Food Network Star, as the winner (Melissa) is a home cook and have had no culinary training. Much as I like the other candidates, I am happy for her, and I kinda’ see myself in her. Cooking for survival.

Of course, the clean-up is always frustrating, but nothing makes me feel better than hubby enjoying the meal I cooked for him (and of course the occasional “his turn to clean up” nights).

So the next time you plan on dining at your favorite restaurant, think twice. You might just enjoy whipping up your own meal. Now if only I can learn how to make sushi…


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