So I'm a first-time poster here, but I've been reading around a bit and you all seem like a bunch of friendly, helpful folk, so hopefully you may be able to give me some advice. I just graduated college and will be moving out of the house soon (probably to the UWS in Manhattan). Not sure what my living situation will be, but I do know one thing for sure: I'll need to worry about making food for myself every day - I've been lucky between living at home and at a college with a kosher dining hall.
Now, I really love to cook; I learned to cook for Shabbat meals in college and took a strong liking to it. The thing is, I have this problem where I can't think of stuff to make unless I know what my "options" are - and one aspect of that means seeing the stuff I have available to cook with.
So, now my question is twofold:
1) What does one generally keep a kitchen stocked with? Especially in terms of fresh ingredients. When you go to the grocery, are there certain ingredients you need to be sure to always "replenish" your stock of?
2) A lot of recipes people post are these complex and fancy things with like five ingredients just in the dish's title alone. How do people generally come up with these sorts of things? More specifically, do people usually plan in advance what they will make in a given week, or is it sort of like, "I have X on hand. Why don't I just cook up X and add in any other Y and Z ingredients to accent it."?
Thanks in advance!