Basic Cooking 101 and Mom Needs a Life

For the past couple of hours I’ve been researching basic cooking classes for my very grown up son. ( I Know what you are thinking.) Anyway, Junior is moving out of town, away from his mom and aunt and will be living the big city life. Restaurants and coffee shops will be everywhere but I’m hoping he can save some money and be healthy by cooking for himself more than he does.

He has grown up on homemade simple food and plenty of it. I should have taught him to cook from the very beginning but due to a busy work schedule I was the sole cook and bottle washer in our household while he concentrated on school, sports, clubs, watching television, friends and playing. By the time he was in high school he was making hot dogs, macaroni  and cheese, French toast and cookies on his own as well as making a very big mess in the process . Like the sainted mother that I am I merely tried to overlook the burned on crud on the stove, pots and pans, oven and almost every dish in the house dirtied in the process. Our tiny kitchen isn’t built for a teenage whirling dervish type of cook. It is more designed for a conscientious, if overworked but reasonably tidy parent. Cleaning up as you cook is the only way to function in the space. As you can imagine, groceries came and went and the bulk of the cooking and kitchen management remained in my hands.

When he went off to university I had copied out his favourite recipes and I had also included tips about shopping for the ingredients. Included in these  were his favourite home made soups, spaghetti sauce, ribs, scrambled eggs, eggs benedict, homemade chocolate cookies, peanut butter cookies and apple muffins. Cooking vegetables didn’t seem to be his thing at all but I encouraged him to eat ready to use veggies and salads as well as eat fruit with his cereal or as a snack. How much do you want bet he took that advice to heart?

He became a submarine sandwich/burger and fries/pizza and takeout kind of guy for the most part despite my efforts to remind him to cook for himself. Also, horrors of horrors, he drinks too much pop. Seriously, it is enough to make a now retired mother lay awake at night worrying.

He has been home for a few weekends as he gets organized for his big move to the big city. This isn’t the first time he has moved away from the home. In fact, he has done it many times and lived across Canada, quite happily on his own, far away from his mother. However, when he was here this weekend and last, I made an effort to have the right ingredients in the house for several nourishing meals. The kitchen is somewhat more workable as we now have a dishwasher but it is still tiny and built for one cook, and that continues to be me. As I called him for dinner ( let’s face it, I took his meals to him on a dinner tray because the kitchen is too small for eating in) he smiled angelically at me, enjoyed every bite and never complained. I enjoyed every minute of it too.

When he is finally settled in his new place, close to restaurants, coffee shops and no doubt many markets and grocery stores he will manage his own meals completely on his own.  Even so, I’m researching cooking classes for beginners as a birthday gift for him and who knows, he may just figure it all out for himself.

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