Because you can’t live off instant noodles and takeout forever.

Up until 2016, I didn’t know how to boil an egg. I wish I was using that sentence as an exaggeration to get your attention, but no – my cooking skills were honestly so limited that it bypassed comical and entered the realm of mildly concerning. I mean, there was a Disney rat that was better at feeding itself than I.

So here’s a question: how do people actually learn how to cook – and how did I miss this life milestone to become so culinary incapable? Should I blame it on my parents, who so selfishly sent me off to boarding school at age 14? I got a well rounded secondary education, Jenny and John, but at what cost? I’m now an adult who can do algebra but gets intimidated by recipes that have a difficulty rating above ‘super easy’.

But, regardless of how I got to my skill-less state, I realised last year that I wanted to learn how to cook. So I went out, borrowed Jamie Oliver books from relatives, bought measuring cups, added Hell’s Kitchen to my Netflix watch-list and started shopping in the sections of the supermarket outside of the frozen aisle. But that still didn’t solve my biggest problem of all time. Or, to be more accurate, lack of time. I tried to fit in 2 new recipes each week, soon failed, and consequently retreated to the safety of Uber eats.

This Summer, I’m trying again – but I’m doing it slower. They say it takes 28 days to form a habit and we have 365 in a year, so instead of making every meal an extravaganza I’m going to try a new, slightly challenging recipe each month until I’m more comfortable wielding a spatula.

Fellow fake adults, I propose a challenge: let’s try a semi-tricky recipe every month until we get better at cooking.


How to get better at cooking

December

Cherry and Chocolate Cheesecake

An indulgently festive start to our culinary adventure. The recipe says it feeds 10 people, but I’m going to go ahead and disregard the serving-size recommendations here.

Time: 1H 20M

Recipe: Jamie Oliver

 

 


How to get better at cooking

January

Mango Chutney

Because, deep down, we all want to be one of those people who visits farmers markets every Saturday and whips together homemade preserves to use as gifts.

Time: 1H 15M

Recipe: Jamie Oliver


How to get better at cooking

February

Smoked Salmon Arancini

Turns out these little balls of bliss exist outside of function canape plates.

Time: 1H 30M

Recipe: Woolworths


How to get better at cooking

March

Gluten-Free Hot Cross Buns

Time to try our hand at the gluten-free fad (and what better way that with everyone’s favourite Easter treats?)

Time: 1H 30M

Recipe: Woolworths


How to get better at cooking

April

Chicken, Leek and Mushroom Casserole

All my life I’ve been waiting for a friendly neighbour to pop by with a casserole.

Time: 1H 40M

Recipe: Woolworths


How to get better at cooking

May

Moroccan Style Roast Chicken

I can assure everyone right now that mine wont look as  good as the picture.

Time: 1H 30M

Recipe: Jamie Oliver


How to get better at cooking

June

Vietnamese Pho

Warning: may or may not cause you to enter hibernation.

Time: 2H 20M

Recipe: I Quit Sugar


How to get better at cooking

July

Apple and Blueberry Pie

I timed this one for winter so you can bring out on your best bed socks, snuggle into the couch and devour whilst watching Netflix.

Time: 2H 15M

Recipe: Woolworths 


How to get better at cooking

August

Crusted Lamb Rack with Rhubarb

I chose to incorporate this recipe because I didn’t know you could actually use rhubarb outside of desserts. Intrigued.

Time: 50 minutes

Recipe: Jamie Oliver


How to get better at cooking

September

Gnocchi with Chorizo

What did I do on the weekend? Oh, I just made my own gnocchi and politely declined a request from Le Cordon Bleu to join their team.

Time: 1H 10M

Recipe: Woolworths


How to get better at cooking

October

Spring Chicken Pie

For an authentic dining experience eat in a rustic farmhouse. In 1832. BYO bonnet.

Time: 1H 35M

Recipe: Jamie Oliver


How to get better at cookingNovember

Lenticchia

A traditional Sicilian lentil soup (that I can’t pronounce) to round out the year.

Time: 1H 10M

Recipe: I Quit Sugar 

 


Continue your quest to get better at cooking.

Check out this easy congee recipe, Jamie Oliver’s delcious turkey burgers or this article on how Perth’s wellness guru’s stay healthy.