As if I came up with the idea myself, I had a lightbulb moment last week during one of my routeless YouTube bingeing when a Bon Appétit video of a man preparing chicken puttanesca came on. Looking at how effortless he made the whole process appear made me realize in no uncertain terms – wth, I can do that! Even though I haven’t cooked anything in years and rarely spent any serious amount of time in our kitchen, not only did it give me something to do, it would also free us from the banality of eating our usual microwave pizzas, take-out KFC, or many indescribable ready-to-eat meals that, in retrospect, all sound very sad when I think about it now. My new-found mission though was deflated by one glaring fact – I didn’t have all the equipment to do the job, which is understandable since neither of us ever ventured into cooking.
After ordering what I needed online and while waiting for them to arrive, delayed unfortunately by the rush of people doing the same as I did, I decided to start my culinary renaissance with a dish that we’d occasionally prepared when the inclination called for, only this time with more dedication – spaghetti al ragù, or more popularly spaghetti bolognese. Rather than buy the pre-prepared sauce, something which rarely made both of us happy, and with help from BBC good food, it was time to roll up the sleeves and come up with a decent sauce that would pass muster. A tall order for a seemingly simple dish.
Nearly two hours later and sans any bodily damage – for better or for worse we don’t have a decent kitchen knife – the final product was ready. Presentation could do some work but the end-result turned out rather well.
Once an Italian colleague found out about my attempt at cooking, he was quick to ask how it went and very soon pointed out – there’s no such thing as Spaghetti Bolognese! Noted and noted. At the end of the day cooking at home does come out more expensive and more time-consuming than what we’re usually used to, but the satisfaction and feeling of accomplishment as a result is encouraging. I’m already looking forward to some other tools arriving soon as well as getting started on some other small tasks here and there.
Now if I only had a blender.