Bored by your same old cooking routine? Stressed by the thought of making din-din yet again?
I hear ya!
For years my stove served only as an extra heating source in the winter. I was so overwhelmed by the thought of using it for cooking: What should I cook? How do I cook it? How much will it cost? ... Most times I got so overwhelmed by the questions that I turned to my takeout menu drawer for comfort.
In the end, however, I learned to overcome my fear of cooking. My solution? I started with super-simple recipes and invited friends over for a small dinner party.
Check out these 13 ways to make cooking more fun.
1. Cook a theme dinner. Pick a fun cuisine like Spanish tapas or Asian and run with it.
2. Put on festive music to make cooking more fun. Tunes that match the cuisine are perfect -- Spanish or Italian, or any songs that get you moving. (My favorite is Billie Holiday.)
3. Cook with a cocktail. Everything is better with a cocktail in hand.
4. Don't wing it: Follow a recipe so your dish is fail-safe.
5. Keep it simple. Pick a super-easy recipe with few ingredients. Simply Recipes is a great place to start searching.
6. Cook a one-pot wonder -- like stew, stir fry, or a roast. Minimize cleanup and stress by tossing everything in one pot or pan.
7. Invite friends or family to cook with you. Your friends can each bring a few ingredients to split the cost of the dinner. Plus, it's great bonding time for you and your spouse and kids.
8. Enlist a friend or spouse to do the cleanup. I cook and my boyfriend cleans -- that's the rule in my house.
9. Claim a signature dish for yourself -- something that is super-easy and you can make in a pinch. Mine is homemade pizza.
10. Cook seasonally. Make grocery shopping fun by hitting up the farmers' market. You can sample the goods, meet the farmers, and bargain down the price.
11. Ask your mom for a recipe from when you were little. It'll bring back great memories; plus, your mom will love that you're asking her for advice.
12. Need professional help? Invite some friends over and hire a personal chef to teach you all the ways.
13. Get motivated. Psych yourself up all day by planning a menu in advance. Pick up some goods over lunchtime so you don't have to fight the after-work rush.
How do you make cooking fun?
Images via Super Junk/Flickr