Last week, we asked you to tell us why you’re the top chef of your kitchen, in the hopes of winning a copy of How to Cook Like a Top Chef. I became so hungry from reading all your comments. The Frisky really does have some seasoned chefs and some budding ones too. Find out which five readers won, after the jump. NikkiL:
“The key to being a good at home chef is just knowing the basics about the kinds of seasonings you like. If you’re a fan of garlic, a little bit of Lawry’s Garlic Salt and Seasoning Salt will work wonders on basic meals.
It’s also pretty easy to look up seasoning recipes online. I found one for an Outback steak rub that I use all of the time. Looking up what was in that simple recipe has led me to learn more about how other spices like paprika and coriander can also add to a dish’s flavor.
I find that just learning the basics different seasonings has really made a difference in my cooking and how a pinch of salt or a few cloves of garlic can make an otherwise plain dish, outstanding.
“I’m the top chef in my kitchen because even though I have burnt, scalded, sliced open, and spilled all over myself many a time I have lived to tell the tale. As much as the kitchen for me seems like an eternal struggle of over cooked pasta, or undercooked perogies, and never exactly having all the required ingredients, I persevere and have even started making rather tasty and even edible dishes! ‘Frozen’ no longer comes before the description of all my meals.
I think a top chef is someone who never gives up! … even if the electric beater seems more like a torture device than a cooking tool.”
“I never considered myself a “chef” until I was forced to learn to cook when I moved to Greece. I didn’t realize how easy I had it in America, eating what I wanted, getting anything I needed to make what I craved, until I moved there. In Greece, I was limited to supplies that I have and I make them work! It’s a joy to go to a grocery store or open market and find ingredients I would never have worked with before, simply because they weren’t available or because I would defer to eating things I was comfortable with that required little thought or work. While in Greece, I discovered eggplant, pomegranate, quince, and octopus…ingredients I would have NEVER learned to worked with had I never lived in Greece. Now that I am back in America, I appreciate cooking so much more. I now know that fresh ingredients are so much easier to work with than I previously thought. I don’t look at the produce section with the disdain I once did. I take myself back to Greece on occasion and force myself to “think outside the box”. Being my own Top Chef is about not being afraid to try new things. Being my own Top Chef is about re-learning about food every time I shop!
“I am the top chef of my kitchen because I am making it work without a real kitchen. My husband and I both got laid off in 2008 and have had to live in extended stay hotels as he travels from state to state working temporary consulting jobs. I have managed to make meals with one cast iron skillet and two plastic tupperware bowls. I have made entire meals such as orange glazed chicken, green beans, and rice….just to make us feel like we have some sense of normalcy in our lives. I would love to have this book and be able to mimic the dishes that I drool over on tv.”
“I’m the top chef in my kitchen because I’m great at correcting difficult kitchen disasters. Even though I’m just starting out and have very little in my cabinets, I can always manage to scrounge up random things and transform them into a beautiful and delicious meal. I’m always the person my roommates and friends call to fix any mistakes they make. I can always manage to swoop in and doctor meals that were close to being ruined.
Cooking is something that makes my soul feel at home. I love making those close to me feel good and give them things that nourish them, bring them together, and make them happy. Since I’m fairly new at being the top dog in the kitchen, I’m eager and itching to learn new things. I’d love to have new recipes in my repertoire and learn new techniques to make them.”
Remember to enter this week’s giveaway!