cooking, just like love, should be entered into with aboandon, or not at all. One of my personal favorite quotes. Of course, you don't want to experiment on a first date (not that I haven't...it turned out disastrous, we didn't eat until midnight, and were drunk from lack of food. We were together for 2 more years;) but you just throw yourself into it and have fun. Look at Julia Childs, she made cooking accessible by burning stuff, spilling stuff, etc...great woman. The first girl (chefgrill) has the right advice. the Better Homes and Gardens cookbook is STILL my bible, in fact I used it 2 minutes ago to train a new recipe! Joy of cooking also an excellent guide. It is very easy, explains COOKING, not just recipes (like how to bake a potato) and gives nutritional information. The other advice I have is to go out and eat a lot...look at the menus, and flavor pairings (garlic and rosemary, curry and turmeric, ginger and chili, etc..) for more adventurous cooking. Good luck and Bon Apetit!
certainly oneof the aspects of humans that seta them apart from the animal world is our ability (and desire) to cook our food.