"I cannot live without books: but fewer will suffice where amusement, and not use, is the only future object." -- Thomas Jefferson

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Cooking on a Bootstrap: Over 100 Simple, Budget Recipes by Jack Monroe

I was trying to buy Jack Monroe's new book, Tin Can Cook.

Whew, but nothing is simple anymore.

Without going into detail, using my devices has become a nightmare. I can not do one thing without a problem or interruption. And I do wish other recipes sites would stop throwing stuff at their visitors, like popup boxes and multiple moving videos, it makes the site look unprofessional and I run like hell from those sites.

Anyway, while I have a copy of Jack's book, A Girl Called Jack, I had it delivered to another address, so I have not seen it yet.

When I went to try and buy the Tin Can Cook, Kindle version, Amazon would not let me buy it, probably because I am not in the States at this time.

They let me buy the Kindle version of Cooking on a Bootstrap: Over 100 Simple Budget Recipes.

And I am enjoying the heck out of it.

I love how Jack adds her personal experiences into her recipes, like not having the time for breakfast as she rushes out the door with a banana blackening in the bottom of her handbag.

While I have skimmed the book, my cooking life is in a twirl. I have spent a whole week looking for recipes I can cook, including some in Jack's book and most of the time I am missing a crucial ingredient, like say, yeast.

What do I eat while I am trying to figure out what to cook?

Well, I have eaten several dead bagels for two days, hard-boiled egg scrambled egg accidents, local rotisserie chicken with rice, carrots with peanut butter, with salad dressing, celery with peanut butter, Beans on Toast, successful blueberry pie filling tarts, and Baked Salmon Balls with DIY tartar sauce. There's always cereal.

My struggles with cooking and food are complex. I am poor but where I live, I can stretch a dollar. But, I don't have a car, so that limits my food choice options, but on the other hand, I do have many options, but I am trying to cook American or British or Indian recipes in a place where most of the ingredients available are for Spanish recipes.

Go to a nearby mom and pop convenience store and you won't find Sunflower oil. I was fortunate to go to a government grocery store and find Canola oil.

I am not complaining, really. I eat well. But, I still can't cook. So, I depend on Cook/Authors like Jack to guide me through the jungle of terms, processes, utensils, ingredients, substitutes and more to inspire me to keep trying to make healthy food within my budget.

The funny thing is as I listen to Bollywood's top song hits while I search for recipes etc., and read Jack's book, my eyes roll back in my head because I have to convert grams, liters, milliliters etc., and sometimes there are terms I just don't know like sultanas (I am assuming they are raisins) but that is why I spend so much time on the internet trying to figure things out. Anyway, my brain is being "stretched" as it seems I am trying to live in four worlds at the same time.

Which is also why I laughed when I read that Jack has gone to the library to research ancient recipes and found a recipe for "Worts" which she altered and improved. Going to the library is always a good idea.

Also, I love Jack's stories about her thrift store finds like her 20p Royal Doulton glass. 

I feel like I passed Amy Dacyczyn's "Tightwad Gazette "Course" with a C+ and have moved onto Jack's Budget Kitchen Classes.

Anyway, I appreciate Jack's mission to help people eat well on "peanuts."

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