How to become a fake good cook

Quiche

I would never say I am a good cook. When people ask me, I simple say ‘I love to cook’. And I do. I have been interested in cooking since I was 10 years old. Even at that young age I realized that yummy food makes better people. Progress report cards got signed a lot easier after my dad had a plate of mom’s signature shrimp roast. And I always managed to beat my brother at Mortal Kombat when he was busy eyeing that slice of chocolate cake. That’s enough for a kid to understand that you can rule the world with food.

But I am not anywhere close to being a culinary goddess. I don’t measure ingredients, I skip steps, I cheat. And I can definitely not make a great dish to taste the same way twice. But, people do like my food. And I don’t pay them to say it. *tiny victory dance*

So I am going to share my very own Ten Never-Fail pointers put together over the years to help me become a fake good cook.

1) Be messy.
Only those who order take-outs have a clean kitchen.

2) Never attempt to serve a dish that your guests are more than familiar with.
I do make pretty decent Indian food. But, if I have Indian guests at home, I will choose to serve Italian, French, Lebanese, Mexican; anything but Indian. If they don’t know what it’s supposed to taste like, they can’t judge your dish. Bwaahaha!

3) Always cook smaller portions.
Nothing screams “good food” better than plates licked clean. When I throw a party, I only make enough that everyone gets one or two bites so they are always left with the feeling of wanting more. Always make 5 interesting dishes in smaller quantities, than one classic dish that they would love at first but would soon get bored with.

4) BUTTER. BUTTER. BUTTER.
Also, cheese, cheese, cheese.

Cheese bites

5) Make it fun.
Put food on sticks, in shot glasses, in a one-size-fits-all spoon. The experience adds to the flavour. Even if it’s just a slice of roasted fig and honey, it would definitely taste better in a spoon, than in an everyday ice cream bowl.

Smoothie pops

6) Stay away from the classics.
People make classics at home. Their mothers make it every Sunday, and you can’t compete with childhood memories. Pick a few dishes that aren’t very popular in any part of the world, master them and make them your own. When you taste a new combination of flavours, you either love it or hate it. But you never think it’s the cook’s fault. You simply assume it is not for you. So either ways, you score. For your innovation.

7) Be funny.
Everyone loves a good distraction. So, if your dessert did not come out as great as you hoped, then be extra generous with the jokes around. Make them laugh and forget your mediocre banoffee pie. When they think about it the next day, they will remember the happy tears as they licked the caramel off their spoons. If you are not funny. drop a button off that blouse. Distraction can be anything.

8) If there are kids, sprinkles, sprinkles. sprinkles.
Have a cookie or cupcake counter. With a gazillion toppings. Nothing that requires work. Sprinkles, cereals, marshmallows, candy, chocolate sauce, whipped cream, gummy bears, you get the drift. Parents will hate you for it, but it will be worth it when you hear the kids say ‘Can we have more mamma?’. You may lose friends, but if you are looking for a good ego boost, this is the way to do it.

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9) The drunker, the tastier.
If there is alcohol served at the party, then keep it flowing. For someone who is drunk, just as how people become more attractive, food too gets more appetizing. So hold off serving until everyone has a good two drinks in them. This little tip could save your life.

10) Be generous with herbs and spices.
A simple breadcrumb coating tastes a lot better if you spice it with some paprika and parsley. A simple plate of french fries can become gourmet potatoes with some rosemary. Do your homework, make the right match, and you are in the big league.

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There you have it. All my secrets are out. Well, maybe not all. I do need to keep hosting more parties, and have people compliment me for my yummy-ness.