It’s often been said that it’s not economical to cook for one. You end up buying things that end up spoiling and in turn, it’s difficult and time-consuming to produce a meal when you’re only making one.
But there are upsides to making dinner reservations at home for one. So before you pick up the phone to order take-out, consider these benefits:
- It’s healthier
There’s no question that eating in is far healthier than going out. Why? Because you are in control of the ingredients. You can choose to cut calories, limit sugar and make heart-healthy decisions like swapping butter for olive oil. And if you think going leaner means cutting corners with flavor, you’re horribly mistaken. Check out this Sriracha Soy Salmon if you need to be convinced.
- It’s cheaper
A little bit goes a long way. That $7 flank steak you bought can be stretched into three meals. That $10 whole chicken can be stretched into countless meals. Chicken pot pie, soup or chicken salad, anyone? Don’t let that steep grocery bill fool you into thinking that it’s the same price as a restaurant tab. It really isn’t. You’ll get more mileage out of home-cooked meals. Try this Eggplant Vegetable Lasagna for a meal that’ll keep you going all week long.
- It’s convenient
In New York, depending on what restaurant you’d like to go to and at what time, it can be difficult to eat when you like. Have you ever gotten to the restaurant of your choice only to be turned away by an hour-long wait? Sure, you might wait it out. Or you may settle for elsewhere that you’ll try to convince yourself is just as good as your first choice. At home, you can eat on your own time. And forget about being hurried out because the staff is trying to turn over a sought-after table. The table is indefinitely yours.
- It’s worthwhile
Look at cooking as a creative, maybe even challenging investment of your time. Play your favorite soundtrack, pour yourself a drink and get cozy in your kitchen. If you’re cooking for someone else, it’s all the more rewarding and intimate. You’re learning, experimenting and most importantly, creating something, even if only for yourself. And even if your end goal is never to cook anything more complicated than boiling pasta and adding butter to it, take Julia Child’s advice: “This is my invariable advice to people: Learn how to cook — try new recipes, learn from your mistakes, be fearless, and above all have fun!”
Head over to Fieldhouse Kitchen for more recipes and ideas inspired by cooking with minimal space, supplies and money in a New York City studio.