Do you cook from scratch?

@marguicha (80518)
Chile
April 22, 2010 12:07am CST
Many people feel they are cooking from scratch when they open a couple of cans, mix them with a boughten seasoning and add to some pasta. But, do you really cook from scratch? No cans, your own seasoning mix, just the raw ingradients as it was before? How many times a week/month do you do it? Do you like to cook that way? I do all my cooking from scratch and my visitors like it very much as it´s becoming a lost art. Do you feel that way? Share! Take care, every one!
9 people like this
41 responses
@MsTickle (24976)
• Australia
26 Apr 10
I cook from scratch usually but I do use canned, diced tomatoes. If I buy tomatoes it's very expensive. If I was growing my own and had an excess then I would use my own but tinned tomatoes are very cheap. They are also the base for a lot of meals I cook so it's a big time saver. There are a couple of flavour sachets that I love to use ...Lee Kum Kee has an authentic Asian taste for my cooking that is hard to beat...I specially like the lemon chicken. I prepare the meat and veges then add the sauce provided...it's so delicious. The slow cooking sachets with flavoured powders are very good as well. Today I will be making a beef and been hot pot. I add the meat, beans and tinned tomatoes and the flavoured powder gives the added taste and creates a thick rich sauce. It's turning very cold here now so warming foods are the order of the day.
1 person likes this
@ElicBxn (60053)
• United States
22 Apr 10
well, it depends... I don't cook my own tomatoes when I make something - like veggie soup, but the rest of the stuff is raw and the seasons, well, they were from the store, but not as mixes, I put them in separately we do buy a spaghetti sauce, but there again, we use our own seasonings and not premixed ones to make it better - we had been known to make our own sauces, again with canned tomatoes, but at least they were recognizable as tomatoes before we started...
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
22 Apr 10
Sometimes I use canned tomatoes (no spices added) to make my tomato sauce. There´s a time in the year when real tomatoes are bad and expensive. But all the additions come from my hands.
1 person likes this
@ElicBxn (60053)
• United States
22 Apr 10
I don't even know if I would know HOW to cook tomatoes to get them like from the cans, then again, I've never claimed to be a cook... There are, however, somethings I can make really good! I make a mean veggie soup, potato soup and split pea soup (sense a theme here?)
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
23 Apr 10
You mean there´s a soup cauldron "going"?
1 person likes this
@ANTIQUELADY (36491)
• United States
22 Apr 10
Good morning Marg, i read an article about a year ago that said cooking from sratch would be extict in a few more years. I do cook that way but young people don't even want to know how. I have one dil that cooks that way & one that doesn't & she has no will to cook much less from scratch.To me it's the best way to cook. I guess it's just the way u were raised.
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
22 Apr 10
Hi Jo, When I was young, there were not as many cans nor they were as good as some of them are now. But on the other hand, I didn´t know either all the bad stuff they put into the canning. I learned to cook the old way and after a while, with a growing family, I discovered that it was far cheaper than to use cans. I read a while ago the difference in price between buying a can of cooked beans and compared to cook them yourself and it was incredible the money you could save only in that. Besides, with my "from scratch cooking" I use every single bit of food that´s hiding in the fridge.
1 person likes this
@ANTIQUELADY (36491)
• United States
22 Apr 10
aLOT OF MONEY IS BLOWN IN ON FAST FOODS especially if u are eating them out all the time.
@hotsummer (10308)
• Philippines
23 Apr 10
it is the opposite to me. i discovered about fast food and instant food when i was young, but now i am older i am getting back to cooking from scratch. i don't cook when i was young but now i love to cook from scratch as i am more health conscious now.
1 person likes this
@TheCatLady (4696)
• Israel
23 Apr 10
The only cans I have in my cupboard are canned beans and caned tomato. I have one can of stuffed grape leaves, but that is an emergency food can. I use it once a year and replace it. I like cooking from scratch. I do all my meals that way. Sometimes I'll use canned tomato's to make a sauce, but the sauce still needs onions, garlic, bicarb, salt, sugar and cooking. If I have fresh tomatoes and the time to de-seed and skin them, I prefer sauce that way, but that adds another 30 minutes to the sauce. I also have to plan in advance so the tomatoes are exactly the right ripeness
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
23 Apr 10
I have few cans at home too, and they are for emergencies. Canned tuna is a great helper for me when I have unexpected visitors. But mostly my ingredients are either fresh or home forzen.
• Israel
23 Apr 10
I won't eat canned tuna, but I have it sometimes. The stinky one in oil, It's for giving my cats pills. They love it and don't notice that there is a pill in it.
@hotsummer (10308)
• Philippines
23 Apr 10
i don't like canned foods and instant foods that much. i like eating vegetables and there are some vegetables in canned that i used to buy like the red kidney beans in can. it is not really popular here in my country. i just learned of it on the net and learned of its health benefits that was why i bought it in canned. till i saw the raw red kidney beans in grocery , so i switched to raw ones and just cook it myself.
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
23 Apr 10
I cook a kilo of dry bean (no salt added) in the pressure cooker, freeze them in helpings and take them out as needed. It´s a lot cheaper and quite healthy.
@hotsummer (10308)
• Philippines
23 Apr 10
that is nice that you are into healthy foods as well. i am trying to be more healthy each day. trying to learn one good healthy meal at a time. hopefully i can do them always as sometimes i will admit i still eat not so healthy from time to time when i feel like eating some non healthy foods like fast food.
• United States
23 Apr 10
I cook from scratch. I even make my own homemade bread and hamburg buns, cinnamon rolls. I make my own homemade pie crust too, all cookies are made from scratch. I do use a cake mix for cakes, although I have a tiny few recipes that I do from scratch. I use canned tomatoes and sauce, although in the summer I have made the sauce and froze it. Lost the patience for canning, also there is now only my husband and I. I only use mushroom soup from a can, I have beef and chicken broth that is a powder I use, make a quart of it then add my veggies or meat and cook the meat in it. Cooking from scratch leaves out a lot of additives and perservatives, also you can control the amount of stuff you put in. I recently made a 'shortcake' and cut the sugar in 1/2, it ws fine.
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
23 Apr 10
That´s the way to do it! I can´t make bread as I live alone and it´s not worth it. But my sister makes her own bread and when I go visit, I go up a couple of pounds. I don´t can any veggies but I freeze some for the winter. As for mushroom, they are fairly unexpensive here so I use them fresh. They have it all year around. I just made a wonderful mushroom risotto for a vegetarian friend. She ate 3 helpings of it.!
@dawnald (84132)
• Shingle Springs, California
22 Apr 10
Some of my cooking is from scratch, some is not. Just depends on what it is...
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
23 Apr 10
Hi dawn, I imagine you have a lot of work and you can´t prepare food everyday. Like when you were glued to the TV watching sports.
1 person likes this
@dawnald (84132)
• Shingle Springs, California
23 Apr 10
haha sports isn't too often, mostly just Olympics and Figure Skating. But you come home 5:30 from work, everybody's hungry, they aren't going to get something that takes 2 hours to cook. Though occasionally I will start something the night before and then finish it the next day.
@Downwindz (2231)
• Netherlands
22 Apr 10
That highly depends on the day, if I have the time to cook I do the cooking more or less from scratch but other days it is easier just emptying a can in the pot together with some meat and then boil rice or pasta. Im also collecting good recipes writing them down and I will be using them for a future blog where people can come and collect ideas for their daily dinner. But my life is a little busy these days so it will take some time before I got the time to do some real blogging, meanwhile I can just gather more great recipes to share.
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
23 Apr 10
There are a lot of sites where you can get ideas for a good meal if you search online. But it´s so wonderful to invite someone you like to eat and make a diner with your own hands.
@Downwindz (2231)
• Netherlands
23 Apr 10
Exactly, i am though so lucky to live with my boyfriend and he loves good food :) So the days i got time for it i tend to cook a nice meal.
@sid556 (31018)
• United States
22 Apr 10
Hi marguicha, As a rule I don't cook completely from scratch. I don't have the time. I do use fresh veges as much as possible but I live in an apartment complex so I can't have a garden etc. My uncle has a farm and he and my aunt still do everything from scratch and I agree that it does taste so much better. They even make their own butter etc.
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
23 Apr 10
I don´t mean you have to plant your veggies or raise your poultry. That is next to imposible in the world we live in. But if you buy a pound of dry beans you can soak them and cook them instead of buying a can of cooked beans (at a much bigger price). Same for sauces and soups.
1 person likes this
@sid556 (31018)
• United States
23 Apr 10
Hi Marguicha, Oops sorry, I guess I misunderstood you. Ok so, Yes I do cook a lot of meals from scratch if that's what you mean. I don't have fresh herbs. My spagetti sauce is usually doctored up from a can, but not always. But I do make soups and casseroles using fresh veges and whatnot. I do make my own chicken stock for stew most of the time. Put it this way. I do put some time and effort into cooking my family a decent meal. I don't bake a lot but if I do, it is because I'm in a mood and I would much rather bake from scratch. I grew up with my mom and my gram baking and I loved their baking. I really can't eat the already made cakes, pies, cookies etc. Mixes are not much different. I can taste the preservatives in them, I swear. If I'm going to create a pile of dishes and heat up my kitchen then I'm going to make sure it tastes good. My food may not be 100% from scratch but I do take time and it isn't microwaved or frozen for the most part.
@p3ks626 (6552)
• Philippines
22 Apr 10
I learned to do this from my mother. My husband doesnt like eating something from scratch but there were so many times that I deceived him when I cooked something out of it. He thought it was something new and after we eat I tell him its from scratch. It just make him laugh anyway. Later on he realized its better to do that since it will help save time and money.
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
22 Apr 10
It is a lot cheaper and healthier to cook at home than to eat food that has been done for lots of people. I eat a hamburger that I make even grinding the meat and it tastes so different than the ones at fast food chains that I wonder what they use instead of meat.
@knicnax (2234)
• Philippines
23 Apr 10
It tastes different because it has a lot of seasonings and preservatives that is bad for the body
@dorannmwin (36692)
• United States
24 Nov 10
When it comes to me and my cooking, I would pretty much say that I really am a mixed bag. I have a lot of things that I like to cook from scratch. However, there are also a lot of times that I really don't feel like messing with the kitchen too much and on those days I will prepare some meals that are convenience types of meals. The main reason that I don't use convenience types of food all the time, however, is because of the fact that there is so much sodium in many of those kinds of preparations.
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
24 Nov 10
In my country, canned food is a lot worse and a lot more expensive than the real thing. I do use canned tomatos for sauces but I soak and cook my own legumes. That makes it very unexpensive as I use the pressure cooker and cook the whole kilo all at once (no salt added). Then I prepare what I want and freeze the rest.
• United States
26 Apr 10
I don't cook completely from scratch. I do use canned cream soups and some dry soup mixes. I don't consider it being cooked 100% from scratch but better for you and cheaper than going to a restaurant or buying a frozen meal. Plus we all don't have the time or the know how to make everything from 100% scratch.
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
7 Jun 10
You are right. It takes time to cook from scratch. The freezer helps a lot though, as you can cook for several days and freeze it. I do that with soups. I buy the veggies, a whole chiken or two or some meat with bones to make a broth.I only use the chicken carcass and the rest is saved for other main dishes. The broth is easy to do. For me, a must is oregano (either fresh or dry), and an onion. You can let it boil alone, while you do other things. Usually that time is for me (TV, computing or reading) and I don´t feel guilty. Then you can use that broth fot different soups and creams. A blender will transform anything into a marvelous cream with a lot less sodium than the ones in canned soups. I do that a lot, specially in Winter, and use frozen veggies to cook and cream if I don´t have fresh ones. Frozen food is a lot healthier than canned one. Take care!
@derek_a (10903)
23 Apr 10
Yes, we always take the time to cook meals from scratch, using fresh vegetables and cooking them that way. It doesn't take that long and I think it is worth that little effort to eat healthily each day. _Derek
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
23 Apr 10
It´s a lot more healthy, as you say, and not that difficult either. Besides, it´s cheaper.
23 Apr 10
I enjoy cooking and get greater satisfaction when its done from scratch. Whether its buying the very base ingredients and cooking them into something which could have been pre-made and bought, or simply deviating from a recipe to make my own creation. At best its when you grow your own fruit and vegetables and thus work right through the process. When you genuinely cook from scratch, you tend to get the whole flavour rather than just a generic taste made from all the processing its had before being bagged/wrapped in a factory and sent to a store.
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
23 Apr 10
You are right. I don´t grow my own food (except for a few veggies) but I make my own recipes with raw ingredients. Take care!
@LadyDD (519)
• Romania
23 Apr 10
I love cooking from scratch when I have the occasion. This especially when I have my garden natural ingredients available in spring and summer and autumn. I do not love commercial cans because they have preservatives. I have my own cans made from my plants in the garden so I can cook from scratch even in winter. One of my favorite cooking from scratch in winter is my canned hotchpotch put in jars in summer. When all my garden is full of vegetables and legumes, my favorite scratch food is salad and fried eggs from my few chickens. For me, cooking from scratch will never become a lost art.
@Thoroughrob (11771)
• United States
23 Apr 10
I cook some from scratch, but not alot. I think we have all gotten used to the convenience of the cans, and boxed items.
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
23 Apr 10
It´s convinient as time goes, but I have found it´s not convenient in money as it´s a lot more expensive. It also has too many additives and it´s not as healthy. And the last thing is that many foods can be partially used in one dish and then use the other part in another. I but a big celery plant and make celery salad. But the leaves that many people throw away are turned into a mean celery sream with parsley dumplings.
@SViswan (12095)
• India
23 Apr 10
I do my cooking from scratch...well, I do use a tomato puree or coconut milk which is canned once in a while...but not regularly. I use the cans or easy to make...ready to eat dishes only when I am short of time. Most people in India cook from scratch...besides a few garam masalas...it's cheaper to cook from scratch and most Indian families cannot afford to buy the cans on a regular basis even if they wanted to.
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
23 Apr 10
I n my country, cooking from scratch is much cheaper too. And I imagine that goes for all the countries. I´m also worried about the quantity of different salts and preservatives they add to canned food. I could eat canned, I suppose, as I live alone. But canned is opposed to frugal and I save to travel for vacations once a year.
@edorms36 (266)
• United Arab Emirates
23 Apr 10
I love to cook and eat, that's why I also do these thing cooking out of scrath creatively, and it will result in an even delicious meal. I think if you are really passionate about cooking then cooking out of scratch will just come in handy for you without even exerting an effort.
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
23 Apr 10
You are right.For me, cooking is as fun as playing was when I was little.
@soleya (1102)
• Latvia
22 Apr 10
Great discussion you started. i haven't realized that I really not cooking that much from scratch. I do boil eggs or cook them, cook potatoes and make vegetable salad from scratch all other food is coming from either frozen or prepared food. Need to start eating more raw food though. It will be healthier choice.
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
23 Apr 10
It´s not only healthier but a lot cheaper. And homemade food can taste like the food from a fancy restaurant. And can look like that, if you take your time.
@markleob (1904)
• Philippines
22 Apr 10
most of the time, i really do cook from scratch... i love to cook... but when i am in hurry, i will just got some instant foods and boil them....
@marguicha (80518)
• Chile
23 Apr 10
I love to cook too. I´t very rewarding to do something yummy and beautiful to eat. And better if some loved one appreciates it.