My other hobby. Outside of writing. One I also struggle to find time for.
As a kid I loved cooking and baking. It started out with chocolate chip cookies and spaghetti and eventually worked its way into bagels and feta stuffed chicken. Over the years though, my approach to food, as well as my level of enjoyment towards cooking and baking has varied. I think this is primarily due to the fact that as much as I liked preparing food… what I really loved was preparing food that other people enjoyed. When the grocery bill was being paid for by someone else I was all about exotic or challenging dishes. When I went to college this changed… honestly. I was broke. I was more worried about how I was going to cover rent than I was about my next meal. I was never starving… I just didn’t have extra money and I was on a very tight budget. Spaghetti and take out were my primary food sources. There was not a lot of creativity involved.
Fast forward a few years and I was a young professional living alone. I expected to cook more. After all I love to cook and here I was with a kitchen all to myself (a luxury during college) and money to spend… and well cooking just kind of sucked. I never thought about it until I lived alone but every recipe is written to feed a family, not a single person. I would make a meal… and then have leftovers for days. seriously days… I hate leftovers. So eventually I just reverted back to my college days of easy single serve food.
Fast forward and I am now a youngish professional with a family. This issue is no longer money, or making more food that we can eat, but it is now time. I can never find enough time. I really don’t know how people do it. By the time I get up, get myself and the kid(s) ready, get out the door, go to work, come home from work… its already late, and I just want food… seriously any food. And lets not even start talking about dishes… and clean up. This meant I needed to substantially shift how I approached cooking food. Gourmet meals are great, but not after working 8 (or 10-15 hours). Now it is more about just feeding everyone. If it is healthy and tastes great than I consider that to be the icing on the cake (not an actual cake… that would involve far too much effort).