The potential of food to add beauty/pleasure to everyday life should not be under-estimated.
I have been discussing job skills for the past five days, but life skills are equally valuable. For example, knowing how to cook. Knowing how to cook offers benefits beyond just saving money (though that is important); when you know how to cook:
1. You and your household will eat healthier, better-tasting food
2. You can create joy by sharing what you make with friends/neighbors/roommates
3. You gain the power and confidence that comes with having useful skills
4. You can add beauty and pleasure to your life and the lives of others
5. You can dramatically improve your health
6. Your value as a spouse, roommate, friend, colleague etc. rises
7. You can save money for investing or spending on higher-priority items/experiences
8. You have a daily creative outlet
The joys of cooking are varied and flexible. Once you gain the basic skills of prep (chopping, slicing, etc.), stir-frying, sauteeing, baking, etc., then just about any recipe is open to you.
It takes a lot of practice to create beautiful food (presentation), but this is a bonus. I am not adept enough to fashion such perfect spring rolls as the lady of the household; these were her first spring rolls, made a week or so ago (the dipping sauce is from Charles Pham’s cookbook Vietnamese Home Cooking):
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