Cooking Lessons

Like many people in my generation, I did not grow up in a household with a mom who cooked. On the occasion that my mom did cook, it was always her specialty: Spaghetti. She would make a huge bowl of it and we would spend the rest of the week eating the leftovers. Spaghetti and I now have a complicated relationship.

Since cooking was a rare event in my childhood, in adulthood I have had to find alternative means to a culinary education. As my fast food generation discovers the slow food movement and the current state of the economy tightens everyone’s budgets, it seems that more and more young adults are expressing interest in learning the art of a quality home cooked meal.

A group of 20 somethings in Phoenix, Arizona created a solution to their desire for a home-cooked-meal education. They found a couple of mentors who were happy to share their gained knowledge with them. Once a month they gather in the kitchen of Terry Peterman, and with the help of her long time friend Mary Laskin, the 20 somethings are instructed on the tricks of the trade.

The menu changes each month, building on the lessons from the previous dinner. This months menus consisted of Vegetable Ragu with grilled Polenta squares, a fresh spinach salad with homemade vinaigrette dressing, and homemade pumpkin ice-cream with ginger snap cookies. It did not take more than 45 minutes to prep, cook and serve the meal.

The art of the home cooked meal use to be passed from mother to daughter, from generation to generation. This monthly gathering is a fun alternative for those of us who grew up on t.v. dinners and the oh-so exciting giant bowl of spaghetti.


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