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You know those great domestic-living skills you learned in home-economics classes, such as sewing and cooking? Somewhere along the line, I filtered those instructions into the back of my mind, and by the time I graduated high school, I hadn’t retained much more than sewing a button and cooking pasta on the stove.

It’s no fault of the school or my parents — we were a busy household and my parents both worked full-time, but I also wasn’t demanding they teach me anything between my after-school jobs. I knew how to boil water, open a box and cook for the required amount of time. Both my mother and grandmothers had from-scratch recipes, but I never took much of an interest in preparing food.

This doesn’t feel like an uncommon scenario to me: many parents work full-time and sometimes more than one job, and many children and teens are busy with extracurricular activities. More than ever, those families need healthy, quick meals, which is what our Confident Cook department is all about.

I love the focus on particular ingredients, too, and how to use certain herbs, vegetables and proteins in full meals — or just quick and easy recipes. Senior editor Anjula Razdan works closely with chef, food stylist and recipe developer Betsy Nelson, as well as with our executive editor and editor in chief, to pick out the most-appealing dishes. The pages in the magazine are always beautiful and make my mouth water, and when I read the cooking method, I think, Hey, I could actually make that!

in the kitchen
Filming the “Show Me How: Poaching an Egg” video with Jamie Martin, Betsy Nelson and videographer Matt Peiken.

Usually, I start with the Quick & Easy Tips, which involve just a few steps.

This month we featured eggs, which I highly enjoyed for two reasons:

  1. My love of farm culture and desire to own hens someday for fresh eggs.
  2. I’ve finally been open to trying different prep methods of eggs, breaking the rut of scrambled or omelets only. Eggs cooked over easy in a teaspoon or two of unrefined coconut oil is my new favorite morning meal. (I add a few handfuls of spinach midway through.)

Our new Show Me How video series will focus on life skills, athletic skills — anywhere we think, you know, a brief demonstration would be helpful. If you have ideas or want to learn something new, feel free to email me at For our food videos, we’re aiming to give people techniques so that they’ll be more comfortable cooking at home.

Bonus for me, the (soon-to-be former) non-cook: I’m learning something new as well, and thus cooking at home more often. I’ll be posting more about my favorite, newly learned kitchen skills as I’m trying them out.

Check out our recent video below, and find more in our library:


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