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Cooking success, at last!

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The one thing that has always remained very hard is cooking a meal. I am fine with something simple, basic and unhealthy - a jar of Tikka Masala with chicken and rice. If I try to cook something with meat and vegetables, I'm stumped. I simply cannot fathom the different cooking times. My brain runs dry and I stand in the kitchen completely blank not knowing where to even begin. Does anyone else have problems with this?

Since I went full-time at work, my other half has been cooking for us. It's wonderful! When he is on earlies, my dinner is ready when I walk through the door. The only problem with this is that I am not forcing myself to practise cooking meals because there is no need. I decided that at weekends, I should try to take responsibility for planning and cooking the meals. Tonight was my first attempt and I managed to dish up a dinner of baked chicken, mashed parsnips, carrots and home-made cheese sauce. I did get a bit 'stuck' now and then but ultimately I managed it and I am so pleased!

It has made me feel very positive and I wanted to share a good story with you all for once!

Dawn x

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One of the fascinating things with my recovery was “the kitchen switch coming on for me”. I know we have had similar issues but I could not process going to the kitchen and preparing a meal for like a year. Something I have made a million times like soup or chili was mind boggling for me. I could only make a side dish it seemed that was so very basic, even cake mixes with 3 ingredients failed. At about my one year mark my neurologist put me on Ritalin and it was like a light switch came on in my brain for processing a meal. It was really incredible and fascinating how the drug worked. I now have no affects from the Ritalin but it was like the 2nd day and it was just like OMG, I can cook again. I still struggle a bit with meal planning and grocery shopping but much improved. I really think that has more to do with burn out from working.

Hope you get back into the swing of the kitchen real soon! Proud of you! How is your Nana?


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Since I had my SAH 2 1/2 years ago the kitchen is def not my favourite place. I've burnt loads of things from just sauces to entire dinners before I used to have friends and family over all the time but its safer if I order takeout or Gareth cooks now ( last year I flooded the kitchen just trying to wash a few dishes lol !! On a brighter note I got a new one . It takes time and effort to cook now but I still keep trying some day good some bad ( if u only seen what happened to Keith's recipe for beef Wellington lol) but try and try again is my motto

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Hi Dawn,

This is something I struggle with too. A couple of tips that might help are:

When I start cooking, I work work out all the timings of when to put each different pan on (or thing in the oven) and write the times & tasks down on a post-it note. I then discovered that this only works if I am not distracted - I have to sit in the kitchen with the note in front of me!!

If I am cooking and have people round that I am chatting to the post-it doesn't work at all so I set the alarm on my mobile for each task. When the alarm goes off I can check the post-it list if I can't remember what task the alarm was for. Then I set the alarm to go off for the next task on the list. This works brilliantly :biggrin:

As with most things post SAH, it's not about being better, it's about finding ways around what we struggle with. Hope you will be cooking many more meals & feeling more confident each time you have a success. I'm sure Andy will be enjoying your efforts!!

Michelle xx

Edited by goldfish.girl
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Luckly, I've not lost my knowledge on cooking. (Good job really, Lez HATES cooking)

Most of you are aware I was a chef.

Not saying, I didn't have problems at first, but something kicked in, then it was learning to adapt doing things different.

Theres loads of gadgets out there to help you in food preperation, I've a cupboard full of them. My Blender & Mandolin, are the most used,but the main issue is timing, as most of you have stated.

I used timers, post-it notes etc, etc.

This I found helped, but now, everything fine,

I've no problem in the kitchen, as I'm in it every day.

Just remember to allow yourself more time than you think it'll take.

Recipes are Guidelines, they don't have to be adhered to them.

Write out a "TO DO LIST"

Get your "Pots & Pans" etc ready before starting.

I'm at the end of a PM or E-Mail, if you need advise.

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I could not even turn the RIGHT burner of the stove on for over a year. And i woudl sit and read it for like 15 minutes and make sure I turned the correct one on and STILL make a mistake.. It was not just cooking but it was everything about the kichen was such a struggle.

It was like I was at first getting dressed which should take 15 minutes but I would get STUCK looking at socks for 20 minutes early on after SAH. But the kitchen was banished from memory. LOL....

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