Saturday, February 9, 2013

Cooking Your Traditional Food

Here's a lesson for anyone who's going to go abroad for an exchange program and thinking of cooking some of their national food, especially if you come from Indonesia (just like me).

1. Buy instant spices Mostly because I can't cook at all. Well, the only things I can cook are eggs, noddles, and rice, which don't really count as national food. Anyway, buying instant spices is way safer since if you're planning on cooking it for someone else, most likely instant spices are not spicy at all (unless they say so), it's easier to make (usually they put a recipe behind it), and it's easy to carry everywhere. My mom bought me a special brand called bamboe or so. I'm not advertising, but I tried one of them today and it wasn't bad. Although it didn't taste close enough to my mum's rendang. But you can feel the rendang in it.

2. Make sure you have tried eating the food before, although maybe not with the same spices. My host mum asked me whether I've eaten the food that I'm cooking before, and I said yes, but I never really saw my mum cooking it, so I'm not sure if I got the thing right. Well, this one is not that important, after all.

3. Try it yourself first.I am not trying to imply something bad, but to be honest, western food is mostly bland. They even like half-raw meat that still has blood with it. It's too bland that I have to eat nearly every single thing with ketchup. And it's too bland, that even an original Jambalaya rice is too spicy for most Americans. I don't understand how people can survive with such bland taste, so even if you might not realize that your cooking is not spicy, do make sure that at least you can't even feel the pepper before you give it to someone else. On my first experience today, I tried before I served, and I didn't taste a single spiciness in it, yet my host family said it has a bit kick to it. Later on, I realized that it does when I finished the pot.

4. Learn how to cook!
Do it now or you'll regret it! I should have learned how to cook even before coming here. I love eating so much but it's just too ironic that the only thing I'm good at is mix-matching egg. Learning how to cook has no harm to you, in fact it does you good. Being able to cook does not necessarily means you're feminine or somewhat. Being able to process food is life, y'know.
Having a recipe that made you work from scratch might not be a bad idea, but again, I'm not a cook. I even turned my doughnuts into rock-like pastries, so it is a safe escape for me to go to instant spices that will at least give foreign people a kick of Indonesian food.

In the end, I'm just blabbering. 

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