The aim of this instructable is to give you the confidence to try out a more experimental and creative approach to cooking. Most recipe books just tell you the steps you need to prepare a particular recipe, but don't talk much about why the author has chosen the ingredients they did, how different cooking techniques work and how to do them right, and so on.
The result of this is that many people either stick to the few simple recipes they know, or feel that they always have to have a recipe from a book before they can cook something good. This is sad, because making up your own recipes and trying out new ideas to see what they taste like is the most enjoyable part of cooking.
What I'm trying to do here is to give you some basic pointers towards a more experimental approach, then present some simple techniques and recipes which you can adapt yourself according to the ingredients at hand or your own imagination.
Step 1: Guidelines for experimental cookery
In the next few steps, I've set out some basic guidelines which are worth bearing in mind as you're cooking. These aren't meant to be taken super-seriously, just as things to keep in the back of your mind that will hopefully both encourage you to try out new ideas, and help you develop the culinary imagination to come up with good results.