Tuesday, March 1, 2016
American Style Cooking
For me American style cooking is associated with hearty meals, more on the heavy side, full breakfasts/brunches with a lot of egg dishes, a lot of baked goods, affordable ingredients and rather too heavy reliance on convenience foods.
The latter is quintessentially American; I own an American cook book from the 1960s, when most women were still homemakers and it's full of recipes calling for a can of this and a jar of that. The USA food industry has been better developed than here in Europe where folks used to cook from scratch well into the 1980s.
I think American approach to cooking has a positive and a negative side. Personally I don't care for heavy breakfasts, I can't imagine why would anyone want to eat sausages and potatoes at 8 o'clock in the morning, but I like muffins and scones and other baked goodies which can be served for brunch or elevenses, and heartier dishes are fine for lunches or even a light dinner.
Another positive thing is the affordability which is important for anyone with a tight budget, seldom there is a need to purchase exotic ingredients with accordingly exotic prices, mostly there are standard items used such as cheddar cheese, eggs, bacon, flour etc.
American kitchen is also famous for it's oven dishes, it's like oven is more used than a cooking stove, quite the opposite to where I live. I actually enjoy it, since an oven dish can be assembled beforehand, put into the fridge and just popped in the oven when the time comes.
On the down side, as I have mentioned there is too much of certain things which aren't really good for you, such as sugar, corn syrup or frozen shredded potatoes. I usually dramatically reduce the amount of sugar and fat and avoid anything which calls for a can of a cream of anything soup or stuff like that. Sometimes you can simply omit certain ingredients though.
Anyway, American style cooking and baking can be great fun and some recipes have long become favourites in our home.