The Quarantine Guide to… I’ll Eat What I Want Now, Mother

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When moving away from home for the first time, many students have been able to develop their palette into a very specific and often revolting amalgamation of substances. With many now back home indefinitely and the novelty of eating your mom’s cooking wearing thin, it’s time to stand up for yourself and eat the things you want to!

Summoning up the courage to take care of yourself in someone else’s house may be difficult, but this helpful guide can show you how to do so while still remaining on the good side of your parents.

1 – Approach with caution

Flouncing into the room and confidently announcing you’ll be taking care of things will leave lots of room for upset. The baby will start crying, your mother will question what she ever did wrong, your father will wonder if he has to eat what you create. This is not the way to go about these things. Instead, write secret notes and hide them around the house to add the allure of passive aggression. Sweet whispers of ‘I don’t like broccoli’ and ‘That’s not how you sauté mushrooms’  will get the message across perfectly. Soon you’ll be begged to take care of yourself, leaving the decision-making in the orchestrated hands of victory.

2 – Set up the ground rules

No, you will not be cooking for five. Meal times are a special time and the fear of outsider judgement is just far too strong and adds a level of disorder that will obliterate any culinary flare. No, you will not dare share your creations with anybody else, they can sort themselves out. Yes, you will be using the ingredients that are already in the refrigerator and you will not be replacing them. Cooking times are between 3pm and 10pm because you like to do bits at a time and you will not be disturbed. These are very easy considerations.

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3 – Make everything smell very yummy

This is a secret tip from a very smart baker. No matter what you make, you can always pretend that you have made something much better. Turn on the oven and put a couple of tps of vanilla extract in for about an hour. The whole place will smell like the inside of a sugar cookie, even if you’ve spent the afternoon making a sardine and carrot medley. Doing this will not only make people feel incredibly jealous (because who doesn’t love being the centre of an envious whirlpool?) but will also give your family confidence that you know exactly what you’re doing. They will be more likely to let you do what you want because there are letting you exercise your talents. Every good baking cupboard will have a lil sneaky bit of vanilla in there, if not, boo.

4a – Order in 

We all know cooking is hard and what we usually end up doing is pretending we’re treating ourselves when in reality it is just 9pm and too late to cook. You can continue this fabulous tradition at your parents’ house and, again, you will be the height of jealousy. The best takeaway is one that can be transferred to a normal plate and can look like you might have made it. The confusion and expensive nature of your relatively average meal gives a real rush.

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4b – Actually cook

This is quite a difficult step to guide people through. I would tell you what to cook to assert dominance or to truly make people leave you alone, but I cannot fathom the wide variety of student dishes. One flatmate once made a chicken fajitas with plain boiled chicken, a carrot, and a wrap, so do what you like. You’ll be eating what you like from now on, friend.

Eat what you like and answer to nobody. It’s time to take back control of your menu and end the era of chicken and lentil bakes.

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Wessex Scene Editor 21/22. Top dog. Big cheese. Huge fan of synonyms.

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