Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Cooking on a "Whim"

For the past several months, my motivation to cook new recipes has, for whatever reason, been lacking. I still love to eat yummy food and I don't mind cooking at home, but I've just been really lazy with trying new recipes. Part of the reason might be that there are SO many recipes out there. I have hundreds pinned and I know there are probably a million more (vegan, even!) recipes I've yet to see.

It's overwhelming.

But we still gotta eat. And I still gotta make food at home. So what have I been making? Sometimes I'll pull from my tried-and-true recipes I've perfected, but mostly I've been making whims.

Whim: a meal thrown together on-the-fly, not from a strict recipe. A dish that I just make up as I go.


Awhile back, I was making random dishes without a recipe in front of me. I just threw together whatever I thought would work, pulling from past memories of recipes and food combos we like. When I would tell my husband what I made, I wouldn't know what to call it.

"I made a random curry."
"It's just a weird veggie thing."
"For supper I made a pan of random stuff... hope you like it!"

Rob went on a trip once and at a restaurant ordered off the menu the "Chef's Whim." After some successful whims of my own at home, Rob started calling my dishes "chef's whim." And it stuck.

Now I make whims all the time. Sometimes they're good, sometimes they're meh. But we eat them anyway. And I think by experimenting and trying random new stuff, I learn how to cook better. I guess that's what professional chefs do - they don't work from recipes, they just cook.


So, since DirtyStove has been quiet lately, I want to share more whims.

  • These aren't recipes; they're ideas. 
  • Take these whims as inspiration for something you can make at home.
  • Rarely will I mention cooking methods. Do what makes sense.
  • Swap out any ingredients, add in anything you think works.
  • There's no wrong way to make a whim; just make it up as you go.  
Let your inner chef play!


A variation on this Zoodles & Tempeh whim I made one night: swap in vegan Tofurkey sausage, minus the kale/peppers, add basil. (We use this spiralizer to make our zucchini noodles.)

vegan tofurky sausage in zucchini noodle spaghetti

Roasted Veggies:


Chik'n Wraps:


Now go throw together something tasty!

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