How did you learn to cook? Did you stand on a chair to help your parent stir a pot of homemade pasta sauce? Did your grandmother entice you into the kitchen with the promise of fresh sugar cookies? Did you pore over the Kraft Macaroni and Cheese box in your tiny college apartment? (Or maybe your preferred method of food delivery has always been the microwave–no judgment here!)
To cook is to step into history, to borrow recipes and ingredients and preparation techniques discovered and honed by generations before you. As you chop onions, imagine the first person who decided to throw an onion in a pan with some oil and let it caramelize into crispy sweetness. Imagine the first person who ever fried an egg or smoked a salmon. Lean on the parents, Home Ec teachers, and YouTube videos that taught you how to defrost a chicken breast or make a gooey pan of brownies.
Even if you’re the only one in the kitchen, you’re not cooking alone.