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What's the first thing or recipe you learned to cook?
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harpospeaking



Joined: 13 Sep 2005
Posts: 194
Location: San Diego, CA

PostPosted: Wed Sep 21, 2005 7:33 am    Post subject: What's the first thing or recipe you learned to cook? Reply with quote

I think I started cooking with eggs first. I made soft boiled eggs, hard boiled eggs, scrambled eggs, eggs over easy, eggs sunny side up, cheese omelets, and poached eggs. For me, I think the thrill of cracking an egg open made me feel grown-up --- I was 6. Although I couldn't actually make the filling, I was also pretty good at folding my mother's Chinese dumplings. Around age 10, my first actual "recipe" was miso soup with soft tofu and wakame seaweed.
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Wed Sep 21, 2005 12:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My grandmother taught us to make oatmeal rasin cookies. Although I had "cooked" before then I wouldn't classify it as my first recipes. It was just some extra dough my mom would give me to play with for hours. I would play with it, add massive amounts of cinnamon then finally bake it poorly and when my dad would come home he would eat it and try not to gag. He is a good dad.
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Dawna



Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 125
Location: Vancouver

PostPosted: Wed Sep 21, 2005 4:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm pretty sure that the first thing I ever made on my own was Oatmeal Coconut cookies, but I was a helper in the kitchen from my earliest memories - greasing pans, fetching ingredients from the pantry or cold shed.

My mother made a wonderful whole-wheat bread, and would often give me a small amount to make a bun. I loved the feeling of the dough in my hands, and would abuse the stuff to the limits of its elasticity - thank goodness yeast breads can stand a lot of handling! My very favourite bun to make was shaped like a crab - little dough pincers and legs, cleverly coiled close to prevent burning in the oven. Sometimes, I got to use raisins for eyes, other times it was little balls of dough. I haven't done anything that cute in ages...
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harpospeaking



Joined: 13 Sep 2005
Posts: 194
Location: San Diego, CA

PostPosted: Wed Sep 21, 2005 6:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Your stories of early baking memories remind me of the time I dreamed about having a Mini Bake Oven (for non-Americans who didn't grow up in the 70s --- it's toy oven with a strong light bulb that lets you "bake" a mini cake) and a Snoopy Snowcone Machine. Never got either one. If I ever have children, I'll make sure they get a Mini Bake Oven and a Snoopy Snow Cone Machine.
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2005 2:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

My sister was so mad at me when I broke her Easy Bake Oven. I was like five, and she should have shared.
I gave my best friend a Snoopy Snow Cone Machine for her twentieth birthday. We were all excited about it for a minute or two until we realised it would be 30 minutes until the first one was made. Ahh, the college days.
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Madame M.



Joined: 17 Dec 2004
Posts: 34
Location: Memphis, Tennessee, USA

PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2005 10:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Interestingly, for someone whose living is based on food and cooking, I don't remember doing anything more than a tuna sandwich as I was growing up. My mother was and still is a great Southern cook and did it all. We kids just washed dishes.

I went to France to work during college. I had met several French students in Louisville on the exchange program, and the mother of one practically adopted me. I worked very near their home and she would have had me come for dinner every evening had I wanted (but HEY! It was Paris and I was young and there was SO much to do! Wink )

Eating in France was sort of an epiphany for me: artichokes, salad after the main course, cheese for dessert, fish that was still on the bone and (gasp) NOT FRIED!

I would get there early and she would set me to little chores. THe first thing I remember doing is stripping currants off their little stems with a dinner fork. But the first thing I remember actually cooking there is cream of watercress soup, a soup I still make now when watercress is fresh and lovely in the spring, and when it's not, I make it with arugula.

DOUBLE YUM.
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harpospeaking



Joined: 13 Sep 2005
Posts: 194
Location: San Diego, CA

PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2005 10:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's interesting that you stayed in Paris during college and now work with food, Madame M.

I also did a homestay in France when I was 18 (in a tiny rural village in Gers) and the thing about French culture that really struck a chord with me were the simple yet savory dishes. My host mother made this wonderful vegetable platter to start every lunch and dinner course --- tomatoes arranged on a plate, topped with shallots and herbs, and boiled, crips green beans in the center. She topped it all off with a little red wine vinegar and olive oil, plus salt and pepper. This was quite a relevation to an 18 year-old who only knew of salad as iceberg lettuce topped with unripe tomatoes and doused in syrupy sweet dressing.
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jenjen



Joined: 06 Nov 2004
Posts: 268
Location: Melbourne Australia

PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2005 12:01 pm    Post subject: mud pies Reply with quote

The first thing I "cooked" was a mud pie. I made it and gave it to a guest of my mother's. To this man's great credit, he took my pie and ate a bite of it! Laughing My mother has never let me forget this great kindness to a little girl.
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Sarape



Joined: 15 Dec 2004
Posts: 583
Location: Anniston Alabama USA

PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2005 2:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't know if this qualifies, but back in the 1960s when I was growing up, there was a toy which had moulds of various insects which we filled with colored paste. This was then plugged into an A/C outlet and cooked. When complete, you could remove these creatures and eat them. Maybe the toy was made by Mattel.

In another version, there was a toy which made creepy spiders and bugs which were more of a latex which were not eaten.

Probably the first real food I cooked was outside on a campfire, and was either bacon or scrambled eggs and toast.
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Deborah



Joined: 13 Jul 2005
Posts: 12
Location: San Diego, CA USA

PostPosted: Thu Sep 22, 2005 9:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sarape,
The toy that made the insects that you talked about was called "Creepy Crawlers" and it was by Mattel.
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rebecca



Joined: 01 Dec 2004
Posts: 77
Location: near a pan of spanakopita

PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2005 12:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I remember very well the first thing I learned to cook on my own, because I had to take a class! I was eight years old. It was waaaay back in the 1970s, when microwave ovens first became popular. My parents bought one at Sears. Because microwaves were so new and mysterious to the average American, Sears offered "Cooking with Your Microwave" classes on the weekends. So on a rainy Saturday and Sunday morning, my mom and I went into a back room of the store with about fifteen to twenty other mothers and daughters--and a scattering of men. The first thing the "teacher" (really a salesperson from the appliance department) showed us was how to scramble eggs in the microwave. Two eggs, a bit of water and a pinch of salt in a glass measuring cup, a minute in the microwave, and voila! breakfast. After that, I would make scrambled eggs for myself just about every morning before school until the novelty of the microwave wore off, and I went back to Count Chocula.
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brighidsdaughter



Joined: 02 Oct 2004
Posts: 233
Location: Canton, TX USA

PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2005 4:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The first thing I learned to cook was scrambled eggs, when I was 5. Our house had a single gas ring in addition to the electric range. I remember standing on a low wooden chair in front of the gas ring to be at a good height for looking into the little iron skillet & stirring the eggs. This was my idea: I told my mother I didn't like her 'crispy' eggs. She always managed to overcook them until they had a golden crust on the bottom. I still don't like overcooked eggs.
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Erin



Joined: 18 Oct 2004
Posts: 1654
Location: Within view of Elliot Bay, The Olympics and every ship in the Sound

PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2005 12:40 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

After reading Sarape's post I realize that my first cooking experience was with my sister's Easy Bake Oven. I begged and begged her for weeks to let me play with it. When she finally gave in it was the best day of my life, (being four or five you don't have much). Nothing up to that point had ever tasted so good as those lightbulb warmed partially baked brownies.

Oh Easy Bake, I love you.
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"It's watery....and yet there's a smack of ham."

"It's hot ham water."
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happenstance



Joined: 30 Sep 2005
Posts: 32
Location: Oakland, CA

PostPosted: Thu Oct 06, 2005 9:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Oh this posting is bringing back so many good memories. My first distinct cooking experience was learning to make chocolate chip cookies with my mom and her avocado green 70s kitchen aid blender. my job was to "help" put the cookies on the sheet. i am sure half ended up on me, in me and everywhere but the sheet. I owe my mother a lot of credit, for she gave me bravery in the kitchen and an innate sense for baking breads and desserts. I thank her for that.

So glad to share and here everyone else'e stories. I just love blog. I have been lurking for a while, but have decided to start posting too. How could I not?

Salut,
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Sharing her home with Rimsky the cat, Cody the partner, and 9 happy hens.

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FoodSciGeek



Joined: 19 Aug 2005
Posts: 143
Location: Vancouver

PostPosted: Thu Oct 06, 2005 5:49 pm    Post subject: Baking with Dad Reply with quote

I know I must have learned some kid's basics before this (frying an egg, mac & cheese from a box), but my first memory of cooking is Dad helping me bake a cherry pie for a Girl Guide badge. Although at the time, Mom stayed at home and did most of the cooking, Dad cooked often on weekends, and he was much better than Mom with pastry and bread (she tended to overwork one and underwork the other). The pie turned out very well, I got my baker's badge, and started a long tradition of cooking with my Dad.
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