Monday, April 30, 2012

FMM: Cooking Habits

If you’ve taken part in FMM then you know the rules. If you’re new, please take a moment to answer this week’s question on your own blog then add your link in the comments section at: so we can all see your FMM questions and answers. Please invite your blog readers to add their links there too so everyone has to opportunity to be seen. The idea is to connect with other awesome bloggers so take a moment to post your own FMM post and comment on a couple of other posts. Now it’s time for this week’s topic!

FMM: Cooking Habits

1. What is your favorite meal to prepare at home? That's hard to say because I find preparing new meals to be the most fun.  Eating, well, there are certainly plenty of old favorites, but I guess I'd say my favorite thing to make at home is something new that I'm preparing for friends.  I usually put a lot of thought into my New Year's resolutions every year, and for the last several years, I've pressed myself to host dinner parties at home with home-cooked food.  So when it's a dinner party day, it usually means hubby is helping me prep things, I'm frequently following a new recipe, I'm excited about a fun night to follow, even if the food is a flop.  I'm usually more stressed than I'd like, but it's all part of the process. 

2. Do you like to experiment in the kitchen, or do you prefer to stick to the basics? I think my answer is right in between -- I like to experiment if I have a recipe.  I'm not very good at improvising (maybe that will improve as I cook more), but I love reading and following (or attempting to follow) a new recipe. 

3. What is your favorite cookbook?  Currently I'm primarily using 1,001 Low Fat Vegetarian Recipes and Fresh from the Vegetarian Slow Cooker.  My all-time favorite cookbook is probably my own.  I'm working on the index but over the last couple years, I've been working on compiling, annotating, and indexing my favorite recipes, most of which I've received from family or friends, but a few have come off the internet too. 

4. Do you have any tricks to share that help you reach your fruits and veggies goal for the day?  It's usually not hard for me.  Most days I have a smoothie in the morning with spinach and frozen fruit.  On weekdays, for snacks at work I always take at least 1 fruit (usually 2) and at least one spinach-cheese wrap or pita (usually 2).  If I eat a frozen meal for lunch (usually the case since I usually eat at my desk and work through lunch), unless it's a frozen pizza, I always supplement it with a single serving bag of peas (single serving my @ss; peas are one of my favorite foods so I think a serving is much bigger than they do).  Most nights we have some veggies for dinner, usually followed by either Greek yogurt with fruit or just plain fruit for dessert. 

5. What’s the most interesting thing you made last week?  I tried cooking seitan for the first time.  I still need to post the recipe, but it was Greek-influenced and made in the crockpot, which meant it was nice to come home to effortless dinner. 

6. How often do you watch cooking shows on TV?  I'd say never, unless you count an occasional cooking segment on the Today Show that I see.  Most cooking shows aren't vegetarian, and looking at or thinking much about raw meat completely grosses me out. 

7. When you’re hungry, where are you most likely to look first?  Just out of habit, I usually open the fridge.  But if it's not meal time, I usually end up getting something from the pantry, most frequently a single-serve bag of microwave popcorn.  But if it's meal time, I forage first in the fridge. 

8. List a few healthy staples that can always be found in your kitchen.  It's funny because we call our staples our bananas.  Since my husband does the shopping, there was a big learning curve to get us on the same page.  If he ran out of one of his staples, he'd make a quick trip to the store to pick it up mid-week.  His staples are basically bananas, cereal, milk, canned tuna, greek yogurt, tomatoes, honey, granola and blueberries.  It seems that he's most likely to run out of bananas.  Well, it drives me crazy if we run out of one of my staples and it doesn't get replaced, so now if I'm out of one of my staples, I ask him to buy my "bananas" (though I hate bananas).  My "bananas" are English muffins, soy milk, spinach, frozen fruit of some kind, pita bread or wraps, and cheese crumbles (not picky, usually feta, blue or goat). 

9. Are you motivated to cook at home even when you’re eating alone?  Yes for lunch, but not for dinner, though when I lived alone, it wasn't hard.  Now on nights when I'm alone, I tend either to get carry out or to heat up something frozen or instant (like those microwave-able Indian food packets), rather than cooking anything.  I guess the one exception is mac and cheese, which I make myself for lunch sometimes on Fridays when I work from home and occasionally for a solo dinner.

10. How often do you try new recipes? Usually about once a week.

Now it’s your turn to share. Don’t forget to go back to Kenlie’s blog to link up in the comments!


  1. I wish my bf would let me cook vegetarian once a week to save us some money. There are so many good foods, but he has to have meat with his meals, and if I'm making it for him, I want it too. I did pick up a cookbook called Almost Meatless, so maybe that can help find a compromise and cut down the grocery bill.

  2. Somehow I didn't know you were a vegetarian. How weird, after reading your blog all this time. Well, you learn something new everyday. I would LOVE to read your post about the Seitan recipe - I've never had it in my life, but the recipe you made sounds like it was really good and really easy. I'd love to try it.

  3. Hey - found you on FMM!

    I'll have to check out your link on vegetarian recipes, although Im not a vegetarian, one of my best friends is and Im always clueless when it comes to what I should make if I have her over for an event or dinner!