I thought I was done learning to cook. I was good enough at it to make meals I found palatable — the only standard that really mattered. I had my go-to spice-blend of turmeric, coriander, and chilli that made the flavors pop in vegetables, beans, and eggs.
Gradually, my cooking habit declined. I found myself ordering out for meals more. The reasons sounded convincing. I was busy, missing ingredients, or behind on dishes. The main reason, I eventually realized, was craving variety. I ordered when I was craving a particular flavor. I’d burned myself out on my go-tos.
It took embarrassingly long to connect the dots that I could make the new meals I was craving myself.
There was a whole grocery store full of salad dressings and sauces for every cuisine. Now I’m expanding my cooking repertoire, looking up recipes, and experimenting to bolster the cooking habit I’d carefully built.