Top Five Tips for New Cooks In 2013: Resolve To Get Back In the Kitchen

Categories: Home Cooking
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Emily Codik
Bust out the chopping board and get to cookin' in 2013

Come January, each and every one of us will be boasting about some ridiculous, noble new years resolution. Think juice cleanses, gym memberships, or renouncing all things pork. We've all been there. But, come February, after much whimpering and complaining, we'll be back to our bacon-eating and milkshake-drinking ways.

Too often, food resolutions are about extremes. This is why they result in failure. Instead of vowing to abide by strict dietary restrictions, try this: get in the kitchen and cook more often. Stop eating out so much. Cook dinner at least one day out of the week. Set the table, turn off the TV, drink some booze, and eat a meal with friends or family. This change alone will lead to more healthful, delicious eating.

So, in the hopes of spreading our enthusiasm for all things cooking, we've compiled a list of the five best tips for new cooks in 2013.

5. Get off the couch and step into the kitchen
A few years ago, in an article penned for the New York Times, Michael Pollan exposed a harsh reality: Americans were getting out of the kitchen and stepping into the living room. While plopped atop a plush love seat, lovers of Paula Deen's loaded potatoes were becoming more and more mesmerized by Food Network's porn-like close-up shots of vibrant scarlet tomatoes, emerald basil leaves, and Bobby Flay's margaritas. It wasn't educational, and it was only for entertainment purposes. But, most importantly, it never rid any viewers of hunger. So, next year, turn off the TV. Instead of watching people cook on screen, try taking a hand at it yourself.

4. Grow an herb garden
Adding fresh herbs to cooking is one of the simplest ways to incorporate bursts of freshness to any dish. But herbs are pricey, and those 2-ounce packs of thyme for $2.99 can easily rack up the grocery bill. Potted herbs are the solution. They are sold everywhere -- from Publix to Whole Foods -- and cost only $3 - $5. Once you have a constant reminder that fresh flavor is only a few snippets away, the garden will also inspire more time in the kitchen.

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