How old were you when you started cooking? What's the first dish you prepared?

Philippines
February 19, 2010 11:08pm CST
I learned how to cook my instant noodles when I was 10 years old. I then learned to cook my sausages, chicken nuggets, and other fried stuff when I was around 17. I'm 22 but it's only now that I'm learning how to prepare real food like lamb chops, mashed potatoes and the like. How old were you when you started cooking and what were the first dishes you prepared? Would love to hear your stories.
2 people like this
27 responses
@LaurenInLA (2272)
• United States
20 Feb 10
My Mother always worked and I stayed with my Grandmother during the day so I learned how to cook at a very young age, probably around 7. I think that the first thing that I learned how to cook was chili. Of course, I wasn't allowed to operate the stove or the oven myself. She taught me how to bake bread and to make jelly. By the time that I was in high school, I could cook better than my Mother could. As I got older, my interest in cooking waned and now I only cook because I have to. The family used to come over to our house after church on Sunday. In the winter, I would always whip up a pot of chili or homemade soup for everyone to eat.
1 person likes this
@Hatley (163856)
• Garden Grove, California
20 Feb 10
oh laureninla wish you could scoot some of that wonderful chili right thru the monitor to me, it makes me drool just thinking about it.
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
You started to cook at a very young age, that's very admirable Lauren! I've never baked bread but my friend told me it usually takes hours to do, is that true? I only cook food that's quick to prepare because I am a bit impatient. I prepare soup too but usually the ones from cans.
• United States
20 Feb 10
Hatley now I've found a recipe for layered chili that I make more often than not. It's a vegetarian dish and has layers of sweet and spicy. Ummy
@sublime03 (1811)
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
I cannot remember the exact age I was, back when I started cooking. I learned how to cook when I took cooking lessons one summer. I remember bringing the remaining food home so that my brothers could taste it and boy they would joke me that it does not taste good. But in fact they usually finish it all without leaving a bite or two for me.
1 person likes this
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
Wow, taking lessons is actually a good way to learn to cook. I'm thinking of taking a course this summer. What sorts of food did you prepare back then?
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@bystander (2294)
• Philippines
21 Feb 10
well, i remember that when i was 10, i was already cooking an ilocano recipe called pinakbet - a misture of native vegetables, stewed with pork, onions and other spices, laced with fish paste. also, at that time, i was also doing marketing for the recipe i am cooking. actually, pockerockets, my parents started as young in the kitchen. even before we went to grade school, we were already doing house chores, including cooking.
• Philippines
21 Feb 10
Wow! That's very impressive! Back when I was 10 the only edible dish I could prepare was Maggy instant noodles. I guess family plays an influential role on how early one starts cooking. Kudos to you and your family, B! Thanks for sharing!
@bystander (2294)
• Philippines
23 Feb 10
when i was 10, there were no instant noodles yet. and now, i hardly get interested in instant noodles... too many preservatives in them...
• Philippines
23 Feb 10
So true. That's why my mom's getting worried about me because I eat like 3 packs of instant noodles a week! LOL.
@galileo2008 (1141)
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
My sister taught me how to cook rice when I was 9. I didn't have any idea how to do it. She gave me instructions but I could hardly understand her, but I gave her the impression that I could do it so she doesn't have to worry. Anyway, after I prepared everything, I watched TV and completely forgot about my task. Then my sister told me she smelled something burning, and I realized that it's the rice that I was cooking. She was so angry that I was punished for what I did.
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
Wow, preparing rice at 9 years old! Funny story though, I hope you didn't need to eat the burnt rice after! Thanks for sharing. I learned how to cook rice when I was 15 already. I did the right cooking procedure but forgot to wash the rice before hand. Fail.
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
Yeah. I was in the 5th grade that time, and I was always watching TV. Then my sister scolded me for not helping her doing the household chores. After a few minutes she went to me and asked me to cook the rice.
@lelin1123 (15645)
• Puerto Rico
20 Feb 10
My mom started teaching me when I was 10 years old. The very first thing I was taught was Spaghetti sauce. Then my second thing was the turkey for Thanksgiving Day. Then I was taught macaroni salad, potato salad, hamburgers, etc. I am so grateful to my mom that she taught me at a young age.
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
Kudos to your mom, Lelin! That's an early age to cook spaghetti sauce! It's really good that you learned to prepare meals early. The first dishes I learned to prepare were sandwiches, and they weren't that good and apparently didn't fill my tummy. Anyway, thanks for sharing and again, kudos to you and your mom!
@lelin1123 (15645)
• Puerto Rico
21 Feb 10
Thanks!
@keisey (181)
• Philippines
22 Feb 10
I cannot really remember what the first dish I cooked was but I remember that my first attempt to cook steamed rice was when I was 8. It was kinda disaster but it was fine because I did it without asking for instructions. It got burned by the way.:)
• Philippines
23 Feb 10
LOL. That's actually a good thing, Keisey. The first time I tried cooking rice I WAS GIVEN INSTRUCTIONS but it ended up as a major failure. First I forgot to wash the rice before cooking it (since it was white I thought it was already clean enough for cooking), then second, I totally screwed up the water and rice ratio. Quite a terrible thing to do given that I was provided with instructions. Lol!
• United States
21 Feb 10
If you want to call it cooking, when I was in grammar school in my home ec class, the first thing we were to cook was cinamon toast and chocolate hot cocoa. Did very well with my first kitchen experience, if I say so myself.
• Philippines
21 Feb 10
Aww that's really cute! It's good that the first dish you prepared tasted good. Mine was a major disaster.
@sarkar1 (336)
• India
21 Feb 10
That's an interesting topic you started. I started cooking about 6 months ago. Well as it turns out my whole life I had been living with my parents. Back at home my mother did all the cooking and I just gobbled up whatever was put on my plate. I had no intention of cooking( I did not even think about entering the kitchen). This had spoilt me( Indian boys are usually spolit by their mom, they are treated like a king you know!!!!). But destiny had different plans!!! About 6 months ago I came to USA on a student visa. Life is hard here, we have to do everything independently including cooking and washing. My friends and room mates taught me to cook, I reluctantly learnt cooking. Initially I was very bad at it (When my cooking turn used to come my friends made excuses and ran away from the house, I was that bad)!!!!!! But as time passed I got the hang of it- now I can cook decent and simple meals- rice, grains, potato, cauliflower, fried fish etc...
• Philippines
21 Feb 10
We share a similar story then, Sar! My mom's good a cook and me and my siblings got really spoiled by that. We didn't have to worry about preparing what we had to eat because our mom was there to do it for us. When I went to the US to visit my relatives we had to cook for ourselves and it was a real shame that we didn't know how to prepare anything for ourselves! That basically motivated me to start to learn cooking. Anyway, I'm glad to hear you can prepare a lot of dishes now! Kudos, Sarkar1! Thanks for sharing!
• Singapore
21 Feb 10
I'm not really good at cooking at all.. I don't like it. The first time i cooked was when i was 13. The first cooking lesson I had in school. I found cooking troublesome.There were so many things to wash and dry. We also had to clean the sink and stove. After that incident, I decided I would eat take-away meals all the time.
• Philippines
21 Feb 10
Hahaha, yeah the clean-up part is the thing I hate least about cooking too. But given time cooking can be fun too. Thanks for sharing Red!
@tanchyka (213)
• Slovenia
20 Feb 10
I was 9 or 10 years old when I started warming up my meals by myself. After a year or two I started cooking pasta. The first meal I prepared was Spaghetti Bolognese. When I was 18 I started cooking for real, I learned to make steaks and mashed potatoes, different sauces and I'm still learning every day because I live on my own and if I want to eat something, I have to cook it. I started baking when I was 18 and have been baking ever since.
• Philippines
21 Feb 10
I should probably try preparing spaghetti bolognese soon too. That seems to be one of the common first dishes most people prepare. It's great that you can prepare steaks and mash potatoes too! Good dishes to serve on a romantic night. Anyway, thanks for sharing! Happy MyLotting T!
@gracie04 (4556)
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
I was 21 years old when I first learned how to cook real Filipino dishes such as sinigang na baboy (soup sour pork) sinigang na bangus (soup sour milkfish), tinola, afritada, menudo, beef steak, pork steak, vegetables in coconut sauce, monggo (Mung beans) and many more.. The reason why I learned to cook this late is because my mom doesn't allow us to take part in kitchen stuff... you know, she doesn't like us to mess around the kitchen, which is her most favorite part of the house... I moved out from my parents house before i turned 21 so i have got no choice but to do household chores all by myself particularly cooking meals... :)
• Philippines
21 Feb 10
Wow, that's really impressive Gracie! I'm Filipino too, 22 but I can hardly cook any of those dishes you can prepare. I really admire you for that, I hope I learn how to cook those dishes soon! Thanks for sharing!
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
Hmm. I started cooking when I was 12 years old.My dish was fried fish. My mother laugh at me because it looks failed but taste good.
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
Wow that's a sophisticated dish to prepare for a starter! Bravo! When it's the first time it seldom happens that the dish looks great, but in the end it's the taste that matters. You'll be eating the food anyway, not stare at it! Nice one seven. Thanks for sharing!
@cloud31 (5811)
20 Feb 10
I started to cooked when i was 7, i started with rice in a rice cooker and for some dished a fried egg and a sausage lol its like i could not eat what the egg looks like in my first attempt.But slowly i've learned and there i can make a perfect fried egg all the time. Happy lotting!
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
That's a rather early age to learn how to cook! Kudos to that Cloud! I learned how to cook rice when I was in high school already. And like you and most people egg is one of the first food we learn to cook. It's easy to make but relatively hard to aesthetically perfect. But practice does make perfect. Thanks for sharing cloud!
• India
20 Feb 10
HI I Remembered .. when i was 15 yrs old.. i start cooking noodles,,,,,, .. as its very simple.. and less time consuming..... just takes 3-4 minutes to make.. and also very tasty...... and also till.. now i only use to make noodles only,,,,,
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
Hello Oms. Like you instant noodles is also the first dish I learned to prepare for myself. And true, it really is easy to prepare and a nice meal. Thanks for sharing Oms!
@Rvd007 (95)
• India
20 Feb 10
Hello ProcketRocket xD i was nearly 14 years old and i made Maggy first time after that i start making other dishes like Pav bhaji Dosa and all becauz im home alone teenage me alone at home till full day at night my mom dad cmes from Work thats why
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
Hello R! We have Maggy here in our country too and their instant noodles were the first meals I learned to prepare. It's a good thing you learned how to cook on your own. From what I've read from the discussions that seems to be the first motivation to cook. When no one's there to prepare food for you there's no choice but to learn on your own. Anyway thanks for sharing! Happy MyLotting!
@dorothy09 (1520)
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
hi PocketRocketAA, hmmmm as I remember when I was still at my elementary years, I was not allowed to touch anything from the kitchen, I think I was told by my mom when I was 12, I learn how to fry.. Unfortunately until now I still learn how to fry online, Its just that I am not reall into cooking.. I dont have patience in learning, reading nor going to the supermarket to buy the ingredients.. Well I just wish my husband would still accept me LOL happy mylotting =d09:)
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
Hello Dorothy! My mom too wouldn't allow me to touch anything in the kitchen when I was young because I always left a big mess. That hindered me from learning how to cook but now that I'm older I'm trying my best to make up for lost time and learn to prepare as many dishes as I can! Like you I also learn to prepare dishes online. The internet really is a good resource for good meals. Anyway, good luck to you and thanks for sharing!
• United States
20 Feb 10
I learned to cook at the age of 10 as well. I had always helped my grandmother make cookies and candy when I was a lot younger. I remember when I was three years old my grandmother and I made candy and fudge to sell at church and school bazzars. I remember my grandmother would melt the chocolate and pour it into a bowl for me and I would dip the orange slices or apples into the chocolate and then decorate them with cookie pieces or sprinkles. My first meal I made was Spaghetti and meatballs. I love to cook and am always looking for recipes. I make a lot of casseroles because it helps us save money.
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
Seems like a lot of people learn to cook at 10 years old! Really good story you have Randy, really sweet of your grandparents to teach you how to cook and at the same time have fun selling them in church. Cooking is a good activity with kids, ya? When I have my own kids I'm sure to teach them how. And true, I agree with you that knowing how to cook is very economical and helps save money. It's fun too! Thanks for sharing Randy!
@p3ks626 (6552)
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
I was 10 when my mom first taught me how to cook. She taught me not because she wanted to but because I wanted her to teach me. I cook this vegetable dish and I didnt expect it to be perfect since I was only 10. It was too oily and family didnt like it but when I was older they always asked me to cook some food and dishes because I know I have improved because I kept on practicing.
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
It's really admirable that cooking became an interest to you at a young age! Most 10 year olds I know were more concerned on eating rather than preparing their own dish. Anyway, like you I also improved on practice and trial and error. I guess that happens to everyone who cooks, it seldom happens that you perfect a dish the first time you make it. Anyway, kudos and happy mylotting!
• Australia
20 Feb 10
The first thing i learned to cook was a stir fry.... simple and easy and theres so many variations!!! But then, im still terrible at cooking basic things like mashed potato and eggs hahaha
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
Hello Leane! Welcome to MyLot and thanks for sharing! I agree with you on stir frying, it is very easy and there's a lot of possible dishes to prepare! Anyway I've been cooking eggs for years but up 'till now I haven't mastered how to cook them perfectly. I guess it's an easy cook but hard to perfect dish! Regards and good luck with the mashed potatoes and eggs!
@jyzl999 (182)
• China
20 Feb 10
when I was in college,I rented room outside of my campus,I started to cook then.I bought some vegetables and meats besides my room,and I cooked in my kitchen,my skill is not good,but it is very funny,it is a good memory for me.
• Philippines
20 Feb 10
I have the same experience as you, J! That's probably why I want to learn how to cook good dishes now. Anyway, everyone starts with "not-so-good" food. They get better though with more time and practice. Thanks for sharing J!