Cooking During Covid
Home-cooking during Covid-19
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, people of all ages have been dealing with complete upheavals of their lifestyles. Restaurants, colleges, offices, were all closed down, and new routines were adapted. We had to remain within closed doors, and fend for ourselves with the skills we possessed.
Interestingly, this has resulted in a massive upsurge in home cooking across the world, as a response to shut restaurants and indoor isolation. Many of us have been part of this change as well, trying out everything from baking to healthy recipes from the comfort of our homes. Who would’ve thought that it would take a pandemic to get so many Americans into the art of cooking? Let’s take a closer look at the effect COVID-19 has had on our home cooking.
How Did The Pandemic Change Home Cooking?
There’s been an evident change in the eating habits of people today, as compared to their habits prior to the COVID-19 outbreak.
We didn’t anticipate the huge challenge of managing our meals for months on end, as we were forced to quarantine within our homes. A lot of us, however, rose to the challenge.
We went on shopping sprees to stock up on packaged foods, hogged groceries; we did what we could. With time, our meal plans and diets simply changed. Our inner chefs were unleashed, and we attempted several recipes - ranging from gourmet meals to instant, healthy foods.
It’s safe to say that we aren’t all experts in the kitchen now. However, the pandemic did see an exponential rise in people who said they’ve discovered a newfound passion for cooking at home.
If you’re looking to jump on the ‘COVID Chef’ bandwagon as well, we’ve got your back! We’re going to elaborate on the cooking trends that peaked during lockdown, and how you can equip your kitchen to promote the food enthusiast in you!
Recipe Hunting on Google During Lockdown
You might want to thank Tiktok for the sudden hype of several dishes that we hadn’t even heard of earlier. Making sourdough bread became a national past-time, and it was also Google’s most searched recipe in 2020.
Cooking became a trend amongst Gen-Z users, prompting them to experiment with easy, delicious dishes that kept them fed and occupied.
Recipes for the likes of carrot cakes, banana bread, dalgona coffee, and IKEA meatballs were reported as the most searched food items of the year on Google. We didn’t hesitate to flaunt them on social media either; it was our way of remaining connected with the world during lockdown.
While we’re at it, check out this recipe list from LA Times, filled with adventurous dishes you can prepare at home!
Eco-Conscious and Sustainable Eating
Consumers have expressed their concern over the impact of their food on the environment, and businesses have taken note.
Young consumers, especially Gen-Z, have taken to sustainable eating practices. Enforced lockdowns have made us reassess our priorities, and we’ve come to realize the numerous benefits of cooking at home.
A global survey by Accenture in 2020 revealed that 60% of consumers have been making ethical food purchases during the lockdown. Here is a list of sustainable food companies we recommend, that have been committed to the cause of reversing climate change.
After all, we don’t inherit the earth from our ancestors; we borrow it from our children.
The World Health Organisation has stressed on the importance of healthy diets to keep our immune systems strong - solid nutrition is one of the body’s key immunity boosters, after all.
The International Food Information Council’s 2020 Food & Health Survey has revealed that over half of American consumers are concerned about the nutrition in their food and beverages, over taste and price - perhaps a major shift from what we would have expected pre-pandemic.
Jaclyn Albin, M.D., General Internal Medicine at UT Southwestern Medical Center, asserts that nutrition + intention is the key to bolstering our immune systems. We recommend purchasing from the following online brands if you’re looking to eat organic, healthy meals that are affordable:
- Thrive Market
- Direct Eats - especially if you have dietary restrictions.
- Sunfood Superfoods
- Farmbox Direct - for produce.
- Green Chef - accommodates vegan, paleo, and keto diets.
Baking During Lockdown
Who knew boredom and a simple sourdough recipe could spur a tidal wave of baking enthusiasts during the lockdown?
Stress-baking is not a myth, as studies have shown that the repetitive behaviors that arrive with baking can ease your anxiety and stress. Most importantly, the scent of freshly-baked bread/ desserts hitting your nostrils is simply put, self-care.
We’ve compiled a list of online shopping places to purchase affordable baking supplies for you:
- Baker’s Authority - Queens, NY
- Janie’s Mill - Illinois
- Williams Sonoma - California
- King Arthur - Vermont
Kitchen Gadgets That Make Life Easier For Home Cooks
Isolation has led to home cooks scrambling to whip up easy dishes that appeal to their palettes. We’ve picked out a few unique yet affordable kitchen gadgets that caught our eye, and have the approval stamp from the community as well!
- Breakfast Sandwich Maker by Hamilton Beach - toasts your bread, melts your cheese, cooks your meat, and fries your eggs all at once!
- Electric Griddle by Presto - non-stick surface with a control master for heat.
- Food Processor by Hamilton Beach
- Vacuum Sealer by Nutrichef - with reusable waterproof bags.
- Strap-n-Strain colander by Kitchen Gizmo - BPA-free and dishwasher safe.
- Electric Wine Opener by Secura - opens up to 30 bottles in a single charge.
- Crushed Ice Machine by MANBA - portable, for homemade snow cones, frappuccinos, etc.
Must-Have Condiments For Your Pantry
A run-of-the-mill dish can transform into a burst of flavors with the right condiment. We’ve got a list of chef-recommended condiments that will definitely come in handy, giving your dish the oomph it deserves:
- Hellman’s Real Mayonnaise
- Burnt & Salty Korean Mustard
- Roasted Garlic Bread Spread
- Mike’s Hot Honey
- Jojo’s Sriracha Green Chili Sauce - Love Hard
These condiments are bold and can bring immense personality to your pantry. Dazzle your taste buds by adding them to your homemade dishes.
So, there you have it!
Despite the pandemic taking us on a whirlwind tour of changes that we did not sign up for, we’d like for you to embrace it. Cooking at home should be an easy feat; it’s not just for your tummy, but for your heart and soul too.
Let us know if you enjoyed our recommendations in the comment sections. We’ve got your back!