You don’t have to be a culinary crusader like Jamie Oliver to find making a meal from scratch an incredibly satisfying experience. So at OSU, we’re on a mission to sauce up the relationship with your spatula and get you feeling flippant with your frying pan. Dusty dishes beware, it’s time to fall back in love with home cooking again. Leave the daily grind to your peppercorn dispenser, home cooking doesn’t have to be a chore. As head chef of your kitchen kingdom, you have full creative control over what you make. Banish bland ingredients, spice each recipe to your own palate, and even expand the little grey brain cells with some new techniques.
Still not convinced? Not only is home cooking enjoyable, but it can also be far healthier than buying pre-made processed food. People that cook more at home typically have a healthier diet (they consume more fruit and veg), they consume fewer calories and are less likely to develop type 2 diabetes or obesity. The process of home cooking for yourself (and/or others) can lean into the space of self-care, taking the time out of your day to prepare a meal of your choice can help reduce stress, anxiety and improve your mood. Even making simple meals can be a great creative outlet and feel empowering.
Having Fun While Cooking
It’s important to have fun in the kitchen while cooking otherwise cooking can turn into a high pressure, disappointing, or even daunting task – we want you to avoid this. This can be easily achieved by creating a party atmosphere in the kitchen, get your favorite songs playing and make like Ainsley Harriott by doing a little cooking dance. If you live with others, try cooking together. Sharing experiences with others can make it more memorable and sociable. If you live by yourself, don’t underestimate the impact (and chaos!) of a virtual cooking session with someone close to you via FaceTime.
Easing yourself out of your cooking comfort zone can also make time spent in the kitchen a more enjoyable affair, nudging you out of auto-pilot mode. The OSU team has created a range of simple yet creative recipes that you can try out for lunch, dinner, or breakfast. Why not try our Baby Grilled Aubergine dish? This recipe is quick, only has 7 ingredients, and draws on Japanese flavor combinations to achieve a multi-sensorial delight destined to appease even the fussiest of palates.
Make Creative Meal Plans
Something that can make cooking a less enjoyable experience is simply not having time for it. If you don’t have time to cook every day, meal prepping can make cooking simple and quick. It also allows you to plan based on your unique schedule. Meal prepping can also help you save money and stick to a healthy meal plan. Most people create plans for breakfast, lunch, and dinner and keep them fairly simple e.g. oats for breakfast, pasta for lunch and rice for dinner.
At OSU, we don’t think meal prep dishes have to be so boring. It is possible to make simple yet inspiring meals. Instead of making a simple pasta base dish for lunch try making our very easy yet delicious OSU-Glazed Chicken and Udon meal. The 8 simple ingredients required for this, produce something truly great and gives it the feel of fancy restaurant cuisine. Adding simple ingredients from your cupboard can really take your meal prep to the next step. Incorporating a product like OSU Apple Cider Vinegar from your cupboard can really make your food more innovative. For example, apple cider vinegar can replace lemon in any recipe, adding that tangy kick. Or if you're making chicken for your meal prep, try adding some apple cider vinegar to your chicken dressing mixture for extra flavour.
If you need help getting your meal plan started, here is our suggestion:
Monttainai is a Japanese term that is popularly used by environmentalists. It doesn’t translate directly to English but it embraces the concept of “Waste Nothing”. Adapt this concept by utilising the food you already have in your household to make meals. Like we have mentioned before, a simple product like OSU Apple Cider Vinegar can do wonders to enhance the flavour of any savoury dish you wish to make e.g. adding a tiny bit into your favourite salad dressing or drizzling a bit into your sauce.
The process of making something out of the ingredients you have at the moment can be fun and stimulating. You’re essentially setting yourself a challenge and trying things you’ve never done before. Not only is doing this engaging but it’s also really cost-effective. Instead of buying new ingredients, you’re utilising what you’ve already got. If you really struggle to think of ideas with the ingredients you have, try the SuperCook app. This app takes the ingredients you have and suggests food ideas. Which, in turn, makes practising the concept of Monttainai a lot easier for you.
Get Started Cooking At Home
Stop seeing home cooking as time-consuming or an inconvenience and start seeing it as a joyful act of the day! Relax and explore with different ingredients or utilise what you already have in your beautiful kitchen. It doesn’t matter which approach you take, as long as your perception of cooking is in a good and positive space. At the end of the day, being able to cook and prepare home meals is a skill that so many seek to fulfil! We all have an inner chef inside us, that we can tap into and release and is something we all can be good at. So, start cooking more at home today with the help of OSU Apple Cider Vinegar. Get your own bottle of OSU here.
We use 200 years of Japanese craft to blend 100% natural apple juice with apple cider vinegar for a smoother taste. Our apple cider vinegar is always raw, unpasteurised and with the Mother.
Concentrated Apple Juice (56%), Apple Cider Vinegar (44%), All Natural!
Typical Values per 100g- Energy: 774 kJ/182 kcals, Fat: <0.5g, of which Saturates: 0.1g, Carbohydrates: 39.9g, of which Sugars: 36.4g, Fibre: 0.6, Protein: <0.5g, Salt: <0.01g
Make like the Japanese and drink in the traditional fashion through diluting 1 part (20ml) OSU with 9 parts of still, sparkling or hot water. New to drinking apple cider vinegar? Why not try one of our fruity drinks recipes to acclimatise you to the taste?
We believe OSU should be every foodie's kitchen staple! Need inspiration for how to add plant based flavour to your salad dressings, marinades and dips? Experiment with our quick and easy recipes for mid week meals.
Want more advice on the best times and methods to consume apple cider vinegar? We've assembled best practice in a series of articles and have answered your questions in our FAQs.
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