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Anyone Feel Like A Full Time Chef?!

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I really do enjoy cooking, however I find myself feeling like I live in my kitchen. I really love gardening and haven't had time to do that anymore along with a bunch of other things that I don't have time for due to the fact that I am either at the grocery store or cooking or preparing things to take with me. Sometimes I feel like I have given up so much of my free time and social activities b/c of things revolving around cooking.

I use to be one of those people who would throw a last minute meal together or stop by and pick up chinese or go to the salad bar or meet friends for dinner. Now, I don't do any of those things anymore. I am not necessarily complaining, it just seems that this is all so time consuming and unfortunate that I have had to give up things due to the time I spend cooking.

Anyone else feel this way?

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Yes, but for me personally it's awesome. I wanted to be a chef, but due to some unexpected things was not able to use my scholarship to culinary school. But with all the time I spend in the kitchen now I am able to still enjoy my passion and teach it to my children too.

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I totally agree. I feel like shopping for food and cooking is my new part-time job. Spontaneity with food has seemed to disappear as I don't eat anything on impulse anymore (and quick take-out is a thing of the past). I'm hoping this will change as I figure out a routine....

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I really do enjoy cooking, however I find myself feeling like I live in my kitchen. I really love gardening and haven't had time to do that anymore along with a bunch of other things that I don't have time for due to the fact that I am either at the grocery store or cooking or preparing things to take with me. Sometimes I feel like I have given up so much of my free time and social activities b/c of things revolving around cooking.

I use to be one of those people who would throw a last minute meal together or stop by and pick up chinese or go to the salad bar or meet friends for dinner. Now, I don't do any of those things anymore. I am not necessarily complaining, it just seems that this is all so time consuming and unfortunate that I have had to give up things due to the time I spend cooking.

Anyone else feel this way?

Yes, and I used to actually entertain. Now I never entertain and usually I'm embarrassed when somebody pops in because my home isn't as tidy (inside or outside) as it used to be. Oh well, maybe I'll get around to cleaning and entertaining again. The important thing is we're feeling better and recovering and functioning, right? ;)

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I would say my style of cooking is more like a short order cook than a chef but yeah I know what you mean! :lol: Sometimes it feels like that's ALL I do is think about food, shop for food and prepare food. I do enjoy it but it gets old. Actually I struggle more to keep up with the dishes than I do with the cooking/preparing food. There is always a pan in my sink that needs cleaning. I live in an apartment with a tiny kitchen that is not ideal for preparing food for every meal. I dream about owning a house someday with a huge gourmet kitchen. I look at houses for sale and the first thign I look at is the kitchen. I can't believe how many large homes have such tiny or poorly designed kitchen spaces. I guess it's a sign of the times--so few people cook from scratch for every single meal. Most professionals eat out more days than they eat in or they just eat microwave meals or quick food that doesn't take much time to prep.

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Hi. I'm new here.

Funny you should say that. I was in your position, and getting very confused. Almost everything I ate hurt me. I eventually gave up on the whole food thing after becoming apparently sensitive to everything except meat and fish, lettuce and rice. My poor husband would have to come home from work and cook dinner (he's a good man). And I can vaguely remember loving to cook all sorts of things, once upon a time.

Browsing the net I found a blog called Evolutionary Psychiatry (very interesting! Humans aren't meant to eat birdseed (grains) at all. Links between wheat consumption and schizophrenia, 'though people here probably know all this already) and from there to the paleo diet. Made some minor changes (including supplements I hadn't tried before) and now I feel awake, pain free and have energy to prepare food again. Last night I made two different batches of chevapes to freeze, so my son and I would have something safe and interesting to eat.

I suppose my break from the kitchen started before Christmas, but I'm ready to go back.

It does get really hard. My sympathies.

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I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE spending time in my kitchen. I practically live there! :P When I am not cooking or baking for us, I am teaching culinary classes or testing recipes. We have never gone out to eat much around here because there is nowhere to go so we are used to driving three hours to eat at a nice place. As I must lie down in our vehicle to go distances due to back pain, those times are wonderful treats because of the sacrifice to get there.

Cooking is who I am in ways! It is one of my ways to express creativity and experiment like wild with exotic ingredients. My cooking comes from my heart. Many people may spend money on shopping or other pursuits - we do spend a lot on the best ingredients but it is what I love and I refuse to allow my passion to fade away into oblivion...

I have taken culinary classes all over Europe and was going to go to culinary school, too, but decided that working in restaurants (or running my own) would involve too many hours and too much stress.

Did you know that tons of the top michelin-starred chefs on the planet are self taught such as Heston Blumenthal, Alvin Leung, Annie Feold and Ferran Adria? They are absolutely brilliant at their craft and are terribly inspirational.

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Hi. I'm new here.

Funny you should say that. I was in your position, and getting very confused. Almost everything I ate hurt me. I eventually gave up on the whole food thing after becoming apparently sensitive to everything except meat and fish, lettuce and rice. My poor husband would have to come home from work and cook dinner (he's a good man). And I can vaguely remember loving to cook all sorts of things, once upon a time.

Browsing the net I found a blog called Evolutionary Psychiatry (very interesting! Humans aren't meant to eat birdseed (grains) at all. Links between wheat consumption and schizophrenia, 'though people here probably know all this already) and from there to the paleo diet. Made some minor changes (including supplements I hadn't tried before) and now I feel awake, pain free and have energy to prepare food again. Last night I made two different batches of chevapes to freeze, so my son and I would have something safe and interesting to eat.

What are Chevapes?

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What are Chevapes?

Am guessing they are akin to the cevapcici (pronounced chev-ap-chee-chee) in Eastern Europe? If that is what is meant they are skinless seasoned meat patties or sausages that are typically served with ajvar, a lovely European condiment which includes eggplant, red peppers, garlic and chili peppers.

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Whenever I get irritated by how much time I spend preparing food, I think of how many people are getting horribly fat and unhealthy because they spend *no* time thinking about or preparing food. Also, I try to think about how it was 100 years ago when you had to pluck the chicken, there was no food processor, and the dishes were washed completely by hand. I've got it easy. :D

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I do feel like if I'm not cooking, I'm reading labels. It does feel like a job. But it has increased my awareness of just how much processed food we were eating, despite me thinking we weren't. So I've come to the conclusion that the trade off is better health. Then it starts to feel less like a job. :-)

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I am frickin' tired of cooking everything.

Really.

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Personally I love cooking so much. What gets me is the amount of dishes I have to clean all the time <_<

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I totally felt like I lived in my kitchen today! I'm cooking and freezing some stuff for a weekend trip. And getting all the non-perishable food items together. (staying in a beach condo) We live in a large, 100-year-old house, but the people who owned it in the 50's cut the kitchen in half! Turned the other half into a breakfast nook - it's now my sewing room. Anyway, it's very cramped for our family of 6.

On the good side, all this has pushed me forward in my plans to teach my 12yo to cook. She's done some cookies and baking mixes so far. She'll reheat precooked sausage in the skillet, but she hasn't tried cooking raw meat yet. I think she gets to learn taco meat from scratch next. And I'm getting my 12yo and 10yo to do more kitchen clean up. The younger two aren't tall enough to completely unload the dishwasher or anything yet, so they get to sweep and wipe down the table.

We homeschool, so we have all 3 meals at the house.

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I don't mind the cooking, it's the dishes I hate. Yesterday, my dishwasher produced a flash of light, and then the smelly electrical fire smell. I had the fire department come out and make sure it was really out and not going to burn the house down. So, I now have no dishwasher until I can afford to buy a new one. Today, I bought plastic cups, paper plates and paper bowls. Hopefully I can get a new dishwasher in the next couple of weeks. Until then, I'll wash the pans by hand, I do anyway, but paper for everything else. By the way, I cook simple meals. Nothing fancy......just plain, simple meals.

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What are Chevapes?

Love2travel is right. The ones we know are pronounced cher-vap-ees, so obviously the same but from over the border. Different minces, garlic, lots of spices, fresh herbs. I haven't had the energy to enjoy making anything for the longest time, so these chevapes are a bit of a milestone for me.

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My partner does! She's actually about to do a "40 hour work week challenge" and blog it next week. She's going to pretend to have a regular 9 hour a day plus commute job and only cook in the off hours. This should be interesting, since she's ALWAYS in the kitchen making messes for me to clean up ;)

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Whenever I get irritated by how much time I spend preparing food, I think of how many people are getting horribly fat and unhealthy because they spend *no* time thinking about or preparing food. Also, I try to think about how it was 100 years ago when you had to pluck the chicken, there was no food processor, and the dishes were washed completely by hand. I've got it easy. :D

I agree. Its both frustrating and rewarding, and in perspective, still less time than our grandmothers spent cooking (usually). For me its a little more challenging making creative meals than for many here since I am also salicylic acid sensitive, which means no spices except garlic, onion, parsley, leeks... not to speak of a very limited diet in the vegetable and fruit kingdoms all due to their often high to medium salicylic acid content. Honestly! Nevertheless I still manage to come up with fairly tasty meals.

Also have to say, I'd rather be cooking than spend so much time sick in bed like I used to do so very frequently--for most of my life until 3 1/2 years ago.

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Oh, wow. Bummer about the dishwasher.

I go in cooking kicks and always have. Sometimes I'm just in the mood to cook. Even pre-celiac I went through periods where I cooked a lot and I have an embarrassingly large collection of cookbooks.

Right now with all the fatigue it's simply awful though. I'm eating "meals" like gluten-free lunch meat on Udi's and raw sugar snap peas because it's too much effort to cook them. (Well, they ARE good raw.) I miss stopping by the Chinese takeout or pulling a cheap, good frozen pizza out of the freezer when I feel like this.

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I really think I used to cook *more* in the old days. I used to make my own bread and pasta. I made huge stacks of pancakes to freeze. I made big batches of hominy croquettes rolled in bread crumbs and froze them for later. I made all sorts of things that we can't eat now.

I did try the gluten-free baking. But since I can't use dairy or eggs, things just weren't coming out right. Or if they did, they would spoil before they could get fully eaten.

Daughter asked for pancakes the other day and I just cringed. I once found a pancake mix that worked really well. All I had to add was orange juice. The pancakes tasted great and they didn't stick to the pan. But... This was back when she was first diagnosed. I was mail ordering anything and everything. I couldn't remember the name of the pancake mix or where I got it from. Now the pancakes I make just frustrate me. Oh daughter likes them just fine. The problem? They stick to my pan! I have to spend waaaay too much time trying to scrub the remains from it. So now I hate making pancakes. Really hate it!

I made all sorts of recipes from that 365 days a year crockpotting lady. I liked most all of them. Husband and daughter did not. Husband likes beef. But not so much ground beef. I can only digest ground beef. Daughter likes chicken. Husband and I do not. It is hard for me to come up with a meal we can/will all eat.

I am asking for a freezer for my birthday later this month. A small chest one. And I hope what I envision will work!

I told daughter I would take her to the gluten-free store and she can buy whatever she wants. Currently we have a side by side. Husband eats soooo much ice cream and frozen pops when he is home that there is very little room for any other food. So if she wants gluten-free waffles, I have no place to put them. Once in a while I can buy a box, put the waffles two at a time in freezer bags and stuff them in there. But mostly, no. Winco sells a huge bag of cooked chicken breast with no allergens in it. But it won't fit in our freezer. I hope I can buy that. Daughter would love it! I buy the precooked hamburger patties from Costco. But again it is hard to find room in the freezer. And no way can I fit gluten-free pizzas in the one we have. It will be heaven! I hope.

I do buy what I can that is pre-made. Hormel makes a beef au jus. I like it but don't always digest it well. I make that for husband and daughter with gluten-free fettucinne. They both love it. I buy various gluten-free tamales. Just heat and eat. Or in the case of the canned Hormel ones, I add a can of chopped tomatoes or some salsa, chunks of onion and peppers, heat through then serve with black olives. I buy boxed gluten-free gravy. I will use it tomorrow with some canned tuna and gluten-free pasta to make a casserole. Yeah, I guess that's sort of cooking but it's quick and easy to make.

But most of the time I try to serve things that are quick to fix and eat. Like salads. Hummus and carrots. Ian's fish sticks heated and stuffed into taco shells. Refried beans in the shells for me. Or heated corn tortillas with refried beans or pre-cooked chicken.

Also when I cook some things I like to cook a lot at a time. Then we only have to reheat. Like rice. We eat a lot of that. When I have the freezer space I will cook up a lot of ground beef. Some will be plain and some will be taco seasoned.

Daughter loves Teff Wraps but... I am getting sick of making them. Nuke the wrap until it's warm. Spread it with margarine. Sprinkle with shredded lettuce. Add meat. Roll up. Try to contain it in foil or plastic wrap if packing it to take somewhere. Bleh. I tried to talk her into a salad, but, no.

Sometimes I really do wish we could just go get takeout from somewhere. Or call and get a delivery. Yes, I can get gluten-free pizza delivered here but it is expensive! So we rarely do that. I also do get sick of dining out mainly because we are not only limited as to where we can go but what we can order.

I also get frustrated and angry when husband or daughter starts whining for food. Mostly in the case of my daughter it is that she is going to be late for dance class. I used to pack leftovers for her but she said she no longer wanted those if they needed to be heated because if she had to take the time to use the microwave she would lose her seat. Well, fine. But that means making a wrap or a sandwich which is really best when freshly made. Or making a salad which I can sometimes do ahead of time but often don't think to. So I get annoyed. I snap at her to get in there and help me then! I don't really want husband to help me. He doesn't know how to cook and would only get in the way. But still I feel if the person is unwilling to help then they shouldn't be barking at me to move faster! He will come in and get in the way if the food doesn't come fast enough. Will just throw open the fridge and freezer and look for things he can eat right then and there. And then if he does eat, of course he doesn't want his dinner. Gah!

It was so much easier when I lived alone. Granted I didn't know of my food allergies but... I didn't mind eating the same thing day after day. So I would just cook up a big pot of chili or soup or something and eat it all week. The rest of my family is unwilling to do that.

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She's going to pretend to have a regular 9 hour a day plus commute job and only cook in the off hours.

I'm not sure if this amuses or offends me. pretend???

Why don't you get comments from people that actually do that instead of one skippy little week where you can do a bulk of the chores before, and after you start. The kind of thing where you throw a load of laundry in the wash one morning, and into the dryer the next. Where your morning eggs taste faintly of fish because you got home late last night and didn't have time to clean the pan, and by crap you aren't going to dirty another pan because those have to be hand washed and you won't have time till the weekend so you wipe it out and throw in your eggs. Where the sweeping and the cat boxes and the yard work and everything non-vital has to be done in the two days you have off.

Why doesn't your partner volunteer somewhere for a month, so she's really leaving the house, and really doing it for a reasonable length of time?

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I have no qualifying statement or uplifting quote for you -- yes, yes, YES! We try to laugh about it, how all I do is cook, and all he does is dishes (that's how it works here, I get 'em dirty, he cleans up). For people who have a life that can't be about the food --- we spend what seems like ALL @#$%# day in the kitchen!! And yes, I like to cook. But really, some times it's just ridiculous.

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It has been a couple of months now and I wonder why I haven't lost any weight. Should be easy since I can't cheat by picking up a donut with coffee in the morning, or enjoying a big mac when the kids get a happy meal. At parties, I am limited to what I can enjoy, and it is usually just the salad and fruit . . . I should be about 20 pounds lighter!

But no . . . I view the whole gluten-free thing as a challenge. Since my young son is also gluten-free, I have a need to search for (or develop myself) the perfect recipe for his favorite treats. We didn't eat them often before, but now that I have this "test kitchen" mentality, I seem to be baking something a few times a week. Of course I have to eat everything (can't waste these expensive ingredients) and each time, the product is pretty good, but not perfect, so I have to keep trying.

Cara

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Right now I am totally sick of cooking. But that goes in spurts. Maybe because it's summer and I'd rather be doing anything other than cooking, which just seems like such a chore at the moment. My meals certainly do reflect that, too.

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Some days all I feel like I do is work then cook, wash dishes, cook some more, wash more dishes. Some days I hate cooking, I'm so tired of it. Now that I am on summer break, perhaps it will get better. I miss the quick meals I could grab on the go, however, I am more aware of how much gluten people eat when they don't realize it!

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