A Year of Questions, Part 4: “Do You Cook for Yourself?”

What is the greatest challenge about living alone? Hmmm…now that I asked that question I am not really sure how I would answer it if someone else asked me. I will have to think about that. But in my experience, one of the things that people seem to be most concerned about me is whether or not I eat regularly.

One unique thing about me is that I am one of those people who can go a whole day without getting hungry. No, I don’t forget to eat, but if I don’t have a chance or if I simply don’t want to, I can go all day without food and not get hungry or pass out from weakness.

Omelet

So I often get asked, “How can you survive without eating anything?” These people spend time with me and get hungry and wonder why I’m doing fine.

But then there are the other people who eat with me once in awhile and look at me in bewilderment when I eat twice as much as them: “How do you eat so much without gaining weight? Where do you put it all?”

Let me tell you a story to help explain this oxymoronic situation. How often does the average grocery shopper go grocery shopping? Once a week? Once a day? Three times a day?

Broiled PotatoesI don’t know the answer, but based on my experience growing up with my family, it was probably closer to once a week. Definitely not three times a day! That only happened when we had guests over for supper and kept forgetting key ingredients for the main course…

Anyway, the point is that you stock up once and it lasts you for awhile.

Well, most of you probably have stomachs that go grocery shopping three times a day. I stock up once and it lasts me awhile 😉 But if you really want to know, yes, I eat more than once a week, and I almost always eat every day. But my portions are a lot smaller and I don’t have a set schedule.

Here’s the thing. I can think of four different purposes for eating. First, our bodies need fuel to stay active and healthy. Second, sometimes we need a break from the daily busyness of life, so eating is a good excuse to stop for awhile. Third, eating is for enjoyment- ice cream, chocolate, steak, bacon, etc. Fourth, eating is a social event, a time for families to spend time together, a time for friends to have fun, and an opportunity for Baptists to “fellowship.” (Can I get an “amen”?)

Outside of those reasons, there isn’t really any point in eating. So when I’m by myself, I only really have one reason to eat, and that’s to provide fuel and health for my body. Therefore, if I have plenty of energy and I’m feeling great, I don’t stop for a sit-down meal. I can wait until I’m at a social event to do that.

Yummy Ice CreamSometimes I eat for enjoyment too, but I try to limit my chocolate intake so that I don’t have to buy new clothes 🙂

Do I get so busy I forget to eat? Of course not. I grew up eating three meals a day, so it has become a habit. I think about it every day. Never does the evening come and I suddenly remember, “Hey, I forgot to eat!” If noon goes by and I didn’t eat lunch, it’s because I wasn’t hungry and consciously decided I could wait.

So that brings me to the question in the title. Do I cook for myself? Of course! I love cooking! Why do people seem to think that single guys don’t know how to cook or that they need to marry a good cook just so they can eat?

Look at the famous cooks in the United States…a lot of them are men. A lot of us know how to cook too!

EggrollsMy favourite food to prepare is eggrolls, and somehow that was one of the things I became known for when I was in college at Faith. But I also know how to cook other things, believe it or not, and I also know how to follow a recipe if it’s given to me.

When I lived at home and babysat my siblings, I cooked for them from time to time, and they got to experience food like they never had before! It was fun being creative and trying new things.

I still do that today when I need to. It doesn’t happen often because people give me so much food that I can’t eat all of it. Lately I have turned down a lot of food that was offered to me because I knew it would go bad before I had a chance to eat it.

That doesn’t include all the times I eat on trips, at restaurants, and at church events. Usually that food is all provided by other generous people (or airport lounges that I access for free).

Brasilian SteakhouseIn the past year, I can only think of about ten times I went to restaurants by myself. Two of those were at IHOP and Perkins for free pancake days. Two of those were at a Brasilian steakhouse. One of those was at a Chinese buffet. Rest of those were at various restaurants that gave me free birthday meals. So you can see where my priorities are when it comes to eating out 🙂

So the real question is whether or not I eat, and yes, I do. I eat very well. God has blessed me with an abundance of food, and I’m extremely grateful for it because I love food!

Fruit PlatterAs a side note, I rarely get sick. So I think that means I do a decent job of eating healthy? But I also drink a LOT of water. I take a 32oz. water bottle with me everywhere I go and drink water throughout the day. It became a habit during soccer season in college, and I think it has been good for me.

Speaking of cooking, I made a yummy omelet for myself on Saturday night, and it lasted for three full meals for me. I included the recipe here if you want it 😉

MinneSOta Cheeseburger Omelet

MinneSOta Cheeseburger OmeletIngredients:
-6 large eggs
-Two cooked hamburger patties
-One medium-sized tomato
-One green pepper
-One red pepper
-One cup shredded cheese
-2 tbsp barbecue sauce
-1 tbsp yellow mustard
-2 tbsp sweet relish
-1 tbsp breakfast syrup (omit if you don’t want the touch of sweetness)
-2 tbsp Caesar dressing
-3 strips of cooked bacon (unfortunately, I didn’t have this)

Start by preparing the cheeseburger mix. If you don’t already have two cooked hamburger patties, put a couple in the oven and broil them quick. Cube the hamburgers and mix in the barbecue sauce, mustard, relish, and breakfast syrup.

MinneSOta Cheeseburger Omelet Ingredients

Chop up the tomato, green pepper, red pepper, and bacon, but do not mix them at this point. Add one half of the chopped green peppers and red peppers and two-thirds of the bacon to the hamburger mix.

Crack open the eggs and discard the eggshells 😉 Beat the eggs and add one half of the remaining green and red peppers to the eggs. Pour them in a frying pan/skillet just like you do when you make any other old omelet. Cook on medium heat and flip to the other side to do the same.

Omelet FryingAfter you flip the omelet, sprinkle three-quarters of the shredded cheese on the omelet, spreading it out evenly. Next, add the hamburger mix, also spreading it out evenly over the entire omelet. After the cheese has melted and you deem the meat sufficiently heated, add the chopped tomato and then push all the hamburger mixture to the middle of the omelet.

Peach Mango SmoothieWrap up the omelet and place it on a large plate for consumption. Top off the presentation by drizzling the Caesar dressing on top, sprinkling the remaining cheese on top of that, and sprinkling the remaining peppers and bacon on top of that. If you saved some sliced tomatoes like I did, you can also lay those on top.

Serve with a large peach mango smoothie and enjoy!

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