BY CARRIE MAH
When it comes to doing something, you have two choices: shell out a good chunk of money to let someone else do it, or spend a large amount of time to do it yourself. It’s always a balance of whether your time (and sanity) is worth doing something, or if it will be worth paying someone else to do it. This kind of thinking helps me determine whether or not I should eat out (amongst other decisions).
One of the most obvious savings – money! Buying in bulk definitely saves on grabbing a snack on the go, or buying those tiny little boxed snacks at the grocery store. Meat and seafood are reasonably priced compared to restaurants, and refrigerating leftovers can save you quite a bit. If you find yourself throwing out goods due to expiration dates or spoilage, consider freezing your meals, herbs or vegetables. I even got a bluapple to prolong the life of my produce.
I also find purchasing produce for the week, and stocking up on meats and other staple items help me keep track of what I should use first. If I’m ever too lazy to spend 30-60 minutes on cooking, I can just pop something into the oven and add some vegetables to the dish.
Time and Sanity
Sometimes when I’m overwhelmed or stressed, I cook. Although I feel like I have no time, once I start cutting up vegetables and hear it sizzle, a strange serenity comes over me. Sometimes, trying out new recipes (like a 3-hour lasagna dish) can make me feel pressured, as my stomach is growling and guests are waiting for their meal. Nevertheless, cooking is a great hobby that doubles up as fueling your body.
If you’re a busy person, you can try planning your meals for the week. Spend a day on the weekend to cut up vegetables (one of the most time-consuming things) and freeze them. Or make a large dish by slow cooking it.
Plus, you get more family time! Nothing beats knowing what’s up with your family than sitting down at a meal and talking through bites. Or you can make food together – pizza is always a fun activity.
Your Public Image
Being able to cook will increase your odds of being impressive to strangers or your friends. Got a hot date? Cook them a delicious meal! Women will appreciate a skilled chef, and men’s heart is through the stomach. Plus you can hold awesome, fancy dinner parties and get your guests to bring the fancy alcohol.
If you don’t know where to start with cooking, Calgary offers several cooking courses. Check out Best Calgary Homes’ list of best cooking classes and Avenue Calgary’s list of cooking classes. Alberta Health Services also has a Wellness Kitchen were classes are held too.
Good luck budding chefs! I hope you all find it in yourselves to stay at home and make food! 🙂