So, I guess I like to cook now or something.

Snoop and me, just hangin’ in the kitchen, no biggie.

I was sitting at my desk on Monday morning, minding my own business, when suddenly, something that doesn’t happen to me very often, happened: I felt an inexplicable urge to cook.

I have had a lifelong aversion to handling raw meat (despite what I said at the time, it’s pretty much the only reason I decided to become a vegetarian for an unfortunate six-month-stint in 2007) and an even bigger aversion to messing up, so cooking has never come naturally to me. Besides, with a mom and older sister in the house who enjoyed doing it, why in the world would I go out of my way to join them?

I guess some kind of inner time bomb went off and decided that my body couldn’t handle an exclusively spaghetti-centric at-home diet any longer. So that night, I did it: I cooked, using only my heart and a mental photo album of watching my mom and sister cook for years for guidance.

Not only did I not burn down the building, the meal turned out great. In fact, my dinner companion that night — a particularly dashing menswear blogger who suffers from chronic digestive issues — said that he did not have his routine stomach ache the next morning. Is it possible that my cooking has the power to heal, one bite at a time? You tell me.

So, dear readers, I present to you…



• Go to the Polish supermarket down the street. Using thumb and forefinger to limit contact with any number of hazardous raw meat juices, microbes, etc., pick up one package of yellow Styrofoam-and-plastic-wrap-encased chicken breasts. Hastily throw into cart, emit sigh of relief.

• Back home, remove chicken breasts from packaging and grip self for contact with raw meat.

• Rinse chicken breasts in water to remove excess diseases. Using whatever dull kitchen knife is handy, trim away fat. Remembering what your mom once told you about meat cooking faster when it’s cut into pieces, cut breasts in half. Smile at your own cleverness.

• Place clumsily cut chicken “pieces” into that really bitchin’ yellow bowl you’ve been wanting to use since you made this post. Squirt some Wishbone Italian salad dressing onto chicken until it’s all covered. Oh, what the hell. You bought the small bottle, so just use the whole thing. Discard empty bottle in trash.

• Preheat oven to 350, like the recipe you glanced at online said to do. Wait, make that 400 to expedite the cooking process.

• Place chicken breasts onto aluminum-foil covered baking sheet, sprinkle sea salt and cracked pepper on top, and cook for 15 minutes. Flip over, sprinkle some more sea salt and cracked pepper on ’em, and cook for another 15.

• Remove chicken from oven and allow to cool for five minutes before digging in.

It smelled wonderful, looked good and tasted great. I cut up my chicken and put it in a salad, but placing it on “a bed of wild rice” (‘sup, Better Homes and Gardens?) would have been a solid choice, too.


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6 Responses to “So, I guess I like to cook now or something.”

  1. jeremy Says:

    Awwww shucks! Way to go.

  2. theyellowdesk Says:

    Can I come over for dinner tomorrow night?

  3. Rosemary Says:

    props for using a photo from my favorite thirty minutes of television of all time.

    that moment still makes my brain explode.

  4. Mom Says:

    This momma is so proud of you! Especially for remembering to cut up the chicken in smaller pieces so it would cook faster. Yeah- that and the 400 degree oven!

  5. askreebs Says:

    Email me your address and I’ll send you a box of vinyl examination gloves so you don’t have to touch the raw meat… a sweet tip from my mom to me and now to you!

  6. Sorry so sloppy. « the acorn archive Says:

    […] based on that week’s farmers market bounty. My interest in cooking has really taken off since this, but more on that […]

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