Queen of Instant Cooking (and Chocolate Covered Snacks) by Lane Murray

My friend recently said to me, “You’re so ready for college, you’re only good at making instant food.” I interpreted this as a both a compliment and an insult, because yes, I will be ready for college when there’s not homemade, healthy options everywhere, but I also knew there was a slight jab at my lack of cooking ability in her statement. And just as a precursor, I’m perfectly healthy and get all my food groups and eat my vegetables. But in the end I really am the Queen of Instant Cooking. I pride myself on my ability to take a microwaveable meal and turn it into something above average. And I’m talking about the 99 cent ramens and mac and cheeses, not Trader Joe’s chicken tikka masala and cauliflower stir fry. Finding smaller compliments to go in these meals are what make up my cooking expertise. Spices and sauces in my 99 cent ramen and additional cheeses, breadcrumbs, and vegetables in my mac and cheese are some classic dishes. I seriously think I can make delicious meals out of any cheap instant lunch when it’s paired with a kitchen that has just enough for a snack and just not enough for a wholly cooked meal. Now that I think about it, this could be a fantastic idea for an amateur chef reality show.

Alternatively, one thing that I like to make a lot which also requires no skill whatsoever is chocolate covered strawberries and other foods. This Tuesday when I was at home sick I made chocolate covered food for the first time since maybe last year. Taking practically everything dippable in my house, I ended with chocolate covered strawberries, bananas, pretzels, pineapple, grapes, oreos, and marshmallows. I don’t know why chocolate covered snacks are perhaps one of my favorite things on Earth but they are and I’ve been eating them at way too fast a pace since they’ve been in the fridge. They’re one of my favorite things to make for people as gifts for birthdays, general congratulations, etc; but they’re also one of most fun things to make to cheer myself up, for example, when I’m sick, which is why it’s peculiar because I really don’t like true baking or cooking. So there’s a strange balance between the types of things I eat when there’s not traditional meals available, but I’m healthy and enjoy what I make, so is there really a problem? The answer is no 🙂

3 thoughts on “Queen of Instant Cooking (and Chocolate Covered Snacks) by Lane Murray

  1. Have you ever tried making a mug brownie? I’ve never had it but I’ve seen videos of it online and it looks really simple. You add brownie ingredients (I’m sure box mix will work fine) to a mug and put it in the microwave for a little less than 2 minutes. (don’t add eggs!). Let me know if you try it. Should be easier than chocolate covered food! https://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/brownie_in_a_mug/

  2. I really like that you enter this blog with a comical comment from a friend and then used it to highlight some critical and complimentary aspects of your cooking skills. You help the reader by educating them about cheap and creative ways to increase the quality of instant cooking. You also give the reader recommendations of more extensive ways to include many foods that can be found around the house and dipped in chocolate for a treat. While this blog is helpful to the reader, cooking-wise, it also gives important insights into your adaptive personality and the ways that you are able to look outside the box for ways to use chocolate to increase your happiness when you were out sick. As someone who would also eat nearly anything with chocolate in it, I will definitely have to try covering foods around my house in it. I also love instant mac and cheese and I would love to try adding more cheese/breadcrumbs to it!

  3. I think the innovative nature of your experimentation with recipes is really interesting. Typically when I cook, I enjoy trying out new recipes, but your blog gives new perspective on other ways I can find and make new foods. With the chocolate covered foods, I think chocolate-covered pineapple would be quite appetizing. I do wonder though, have you ever tried food covered in other dippable things? Ketchup-covered strawberries don’t sound good, but you never know until you try, right?

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