I will do anything to save money, but I won’t bake bread or roll sushi

I’m up for just about any recipe. But there are a few dishes I’d rather buy than make myself.

Sometimes, plain ol’ convenience wins out over the reward of creating something in your own kitchen. Time is in short supply these days (damn sequester), and I can’t always make everything lovingly from scratch. Instead, I shelve my ambitions and pick something off my shelf that only needs to be opened, eaten and enjoyed.

Here are a few foods that I would rather buy than make. Feel free to chime in.

  • Bread. I don’t have a bread maker. I also don’t have the patience for dealing with a live, active culture like yeast. Why go through the trouble of cutting butter into flour, and kneading, and waiting, and baking, when I can just grab a slice from the 89-cent loaf I scored because of a Kroger manager’s special? This category also includes dinner rolls, biscuits and pita bread.
  • Tahini - Sesame seeds paste
    Tahini – Sesame seeds paste (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

    Hummus. I blame the tahini, a key hummus ingredient, for my aversion to making this dip on my own. I hate buying a condiment that only has one special purpose in the world. Can I put tahini on chicken, fish and steak? My fear is that the tahini will fester in the back of my cabinet between batches of hummus.

  • Curry. My curry will never, ever be as good as the most mediocre curry in the most mediocre restaurant. I prefer not to try rather than have my hopes dashed.
  • Salsa. I had a bad experience with homemade salsa. It involved two friends, some vegetables from the Trader Joe’s in Washington, D.C., and a Magic Bullet blender. Unfortunately, it did not involve any spices. That soupy mess has scarred me for at least another decade.
  • CrackersThe Kitchn, one of my favorite food blogs, is always trying to tell me I can make my own crackers at home (here are 10 recipes). I’m sorry, but eff that. I turn to a box of crackers when I’m feeling all sort of feelings that only Golden Girls and cuddling with my dog can make better. Making my favorite feel-better snack from scratch takes away some of the comfort. It adds work. I can’t do it.
  • DKD sushiSushi. Don’t even get me started. Jiro has spent his whole life becoming the master of raw fish and rice. I’m not going to even try.

What foods do you refuse to make?

11 thoughts on “I will do anything to save money, but I won’t bake bread or roll sushi

  1. Jesse pretty much insists on making everything from scratch and most things he really hits the mark BUT we’re right there with you on the bread and sushi. We have tried both and it’s a fun weekend project but to make it regularly? No thanks.

  2. Haha I love this post! Thinking about baking bread stresses me out because working with yeast intimidates me. It’s something I want to do someday though! I refuse to make sushi too – I’ve done it and it’s fun but it’s not worth the hassle. Annnnd I think I’m giving up on making curries. I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve tried and I’m always disappointed because it’s never as good as restaurants! I feel like if I didn’t have a preconceived idea of what it is “supposed” to taste like, and I could just eat it with no expectations, I’d actually enjoy the ones I make! Oh well…

    You should give salsa another try – I love making blender salsa at home and eating it all week. It is so much better than store bought – i can’t go back!

  3. I just scrap the tahini in my hummus and its still pretty tasty. I’m with you on bread and sushi though.

    I don’t have the patience to bake cakes – especially layered and iced ones. I stick to cookies and crumb-topped pies. I always canned beans. I know it would probably taste better to buy them and soak overnight but that takes entirely too much planning for me. I think the only other thing I refuse to try is pasta.

    1. Oooh, I’m with you on pasta. It was a couple of decades before I even knew that you *could* even make pasta at home.

      I have, however, tried cooking dried beans. My mom taught me a trick — use a slow-cooker. I’m having beans and cornbread this week, actually.

  4. I agreeee!!!! I don’t do any of these things. Not that I cook all that much to begin with. But some stuff is just too much. I’ll leave those to the pros.

  5. You can substitute peanut butter for tahini in hummus and it still takes pretty yummy 🙂 The tahini, from my experience, is just something added as a thickener.

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