Under different circumstances, we would love to talk about the social side of cooking. There is just something so special about having friends and family over and enjoying a meal together. But at the moment, lock down measures and the need for social distancing have made it impossible to enjoy these experiences together, at least for now.
In this blog though, we want to talk a bit about what it means to rediscover the joy of cooking for yourself in isolation. Whether you’re already an accomplished home cook, or just starting out, we can all benefit from taking the time to create something special each day.
A Mindful Moment to Yourself Each Day
This period has been challenging for everyone. And despite the time that we are spending in our own company, it can be hard to draw our minds away from the difficulties and problems that exist ‘out there’ at this point in time. Cooking is a brilliant way to combat the exhausting effects of ruminating over the same issues and unknowns. Much more than a simple distraction, cooking can become a daily exercise in mindfulness.
Cooking well requires our full attention. It demands of us that we engage fully with each of our senses and think carefully about what is going on in front of us. It’s a process that puts us ‘in the moment’. And it can be used as a daily experience that helps us stay conscious of what we are doing right here and now. Rather than ruminating over the problems the world is facing at the moment.
A Time to Experiment
Cooking for others is truly something special. But anyone who has made the effort to cook for a partner or group of people will be familiar with the pressure we sometimes feel to ‘get it right’. When cooking for yourself, this pressure is gone – we only have our own expectations to live up to! This gives each of us the space to try new things and experiment a little in the kitchen. All with the knowledge that the potential for a new favourite far outweighs the risk of disappointment.
We encourage you to try something new in the kitchen, choosing a challenge that pushes your limits a touch. You may want to have a go at a handful of dishes from a cuisine you have always wanted to try, or maybe even try and recapture a past favourite, but with a new twist!
To Remind Ourselves of What We Can Be Grateful For
Cooking is an involved process. It takes time and effort and it is often so much easier to let the local professionals do the work for us. But it’s important that we stay in touch with what it means to create a meal. And taking the time to do that work ourselves is a great way to ensure that we remain grateful for the food that sustains us.
Gratitude is important. It shapes how we interact with the world (even when our world is made smaller by isolation) and fosters a deeper sense of happiness and wellbeing. By engaging in the process of cooking for ourselves, we give ourselves a chance to understand exactly what we should be grateful for.