Introduction: How to Cook (an Introduction)
Step 1: What You Need to Know About Cooking/baking
First, cooking is NOT an exact science. Despite what people may tell you, it is, for the most part, not.
You're first step to cooking would be to know how to follow a recipe. Follow, follow, and follow recipes. The only way you will be able to learn to cook is by doing it over and over again. If you come across a term you don't know, Google it, there are dozens of people out there who want to tell you what those terms mean.
Step 2: Basic Building Blocks
When cooking, you need to understand the basics. Cooking is just like playing with Legos, except not quite. ;-) For example, When I bake bread, I never measure things exactly. I always start out with the same basic "base" though. 2 cups of flour, 2 cups of hot water, 2 Tbs. oil, 2 Tsp. salt, 2 Tbs. sugar, and 2 Tbs of yeast. After I let that rise, I can do just about ANYTHING with my bread. I just add enough flour, usually about 3 more cups (but remember, you didn't measure perfectly for the "base"), and then I can make just about any bread I want. Cinnamon swirl, loafs, braided bread, etc.... And if I add, say, sweet potato's to the sponge (that's what the base is called) then I can make all sorts of fun things. if you make several sponges with different kinds of sweet potato's, then you can braid together three different colors!
See, with the same basic "base", I can make any kind of bread I want!
Some bread that other intructables user have made:
Honey Maple Bread
Home Made Sourdough Bread
Rice Cooker Bread
Step 3: Enjoy It
For years all I could make was eggs and mac and cheese, but that changed when I was about 14. You see, I have 3 brothers, and we eat like crazy. When I was about 13 or 14 my mom started encouraging me cook a LOT. Before that point I had been making brownies and such, but never anything real fancy. I found that I loved to make deserts. besides the obvious reasons, I loved it so much because I could make ANYTHING. with the same basic ingredients I could make a dozen different deserts. When I was 14 I made a fancy desert consisting of chocolate cake, home made ice cream, and fancy chocolate bowls. That may not seem like a very big accomplishment, but for a 14 year old it was huge. I had just made a fancy desert, that actually looked good, and I had done it all by myself.
Some deserts posted by instructablers are:
Micro Mud Pie
liquid nitrogen ice cream
Step 4: Be Creative!
This is where the fun begins. As I said before, you can make anything. If you don't know how to make something, look it up! Find a recipe and experiment with it until it's your own recipe. Tinker with it, change it so it's exactly what you want. Some recipes will need to be followed EXACTLY. Not all, but some. Especially recipes for certain cakes and candies. With candy you have to be SO careful to get things heated to the exact right temperature, etc...
Step 5: How to Do Some Basic Basics
Here's how to do some basic basics:
Eggs- making eggs is a valuable skill is essential.
Hard boil them, Some one just posted about this! Here.
Scramble them, Spray a skillet with non-stick spray and turn the burner to medium. Crack 2 or 3 eggs in and still them just a little. Cut in some cheese if you like, or potatos or chicken, or anything that sounds good. Cook for a few minutes, stirring/flipping/moving them so it all gets cooked.
Plenty more ways to make eggs, you can make omelets, or poach them, or do any number of things to them.
Some othe egg ideas are,
The Easy 40 Second Egg
Vegetables- These are healthy, and good for you!
Fresh vegies, these are great. You can eat lots vegetables fresh, carrots, lettuce, tomatoes, celery, etc. Just wash 'em, cut them up and eat them!
Cooked vegies, steam 'em! broccoli, beets, carrots, potatoes, you name it.
Some steamer/steamed food would be,
How to Cook and Eat an Artichoke
Quick Homemade Steamer Hack
-Cooking chicken: You can cook this so many ways. one of my favorite ways is to grill it. It's best to marinate it, the simplest marinade is to stir spices into plain yogurt, put some chicken breasts into this, and let it sit in the fridge for about an hour or two.
-Sandwich making skills: This is a handy skill to have. most people think they can make a sandwich, and usually they can, but load on the meat, cheese, tomatos, and lettuce on home made bread and you're golden.
-Rice: This is an essential part of many courses, and is good to know how to make. You don't need a rice cooker to make good rice. the water and rice is alway going to be a 2 to 1 ratio. 2 cups of water for 1 cup of rice, boil it, cover it, and let it simmer for 20 minutes.
Step 6: Keep Doing It
Keep cooking to get better at it.
The picture below are some things I've made recently.
(The cookies are molasses)
a helpful site is My sister's kitchen.