Who likes food? Everyone does! And to get some of the best foods, cooking is required.
So what happens when teens and cooking mix? After all, once we leave home for college we'll only have so many options, like praying for a roommate with amazing chef skills or ordering McDonald's and Pizza Hut every day.
Or there is our other option: cooking. By ourselves. With our own ingredients. And whatever comes out is, depending on the outcome, lunch -- or trash.
Even as we near the age that we'll leave home, it turns out many Top of Utah teens don't cook on a daily basis. And even when they do, they sometimes meet with disaster.
"When I cook, even the fire alarm has to cheer me on!" said Kami Weston, a sophomore at NUAMES.
Adam Sorensen's experiences aren't quite as drastic but he recalls one time when he had bad luck.
"I was cooking stir-fry, and the wok started on fire," the senior at Bonneville High said. "My sister poured water all over it, even when I told her not to, and we had to take it outside to put the fire out."
Fire seems common in teenage disasters. Nate Rumsey, a senior from Northridge, says that when he and his friend, Chad Crook, cook, "we both end up with grease burns and singed eyebrows.".
Yet Ryan Fenton-Garcia's story tops them all: "Once, I ended up with a mountain of half-cooked misshapen pancakes. I ate them," the Bonneville High senior said.
Luckily for Alaina Rice, a Bonneville High senior, she didn't have to eat her cooking-mishap.
"I ended up burning rice," she says. "I just threw it away."
Up in smoke
John Adsit, a senior from Northridge High, says, "My girlfriend and I were making cupcakes, and the icing went badly because we were trying to make it from scratch. We just used normal icing instead."
"There was one time where I accidentally put a fork in the microwave for four minutes," said Stephanie Lewis, a junior studying in Electronic High School. "That made some pretty cool fireworks."
Lewis also said, "Another time I was making cookies and I put Crisco into a really hot pan on the stove. The whole thing started on fire and the smoke alarms went off and everything. It was great."
Jon Spencer, a sophomore at Sky View High School, said he was injured once while cooking.
"I got my fingers stuck in the beaters one time. My advice to everyone else: don't do that. It hurts," he said.
Eliza Bingham, a ninth grader at T.H. Bell Junior High, said, "One time I was making cookies and I was doubling the recipe. I got to one ingredient and I didn't have double of it, so I took all the double of everything else out."
Teens admit they aren't doing most of the cooking at home.
"My mom cooks in the family and I like it because it's so homey and it makes you feel loved and at peace," said Taylor Durtschi, a sophomore from NUAMES.
Spencer said, "My mom cooks and it's great. Whenever someone else tries, it's no bueno."
Of course, there are households where both parents cook, or fathers get their fair share of being "family chef" too, like Sorensen's, where he says, "My dad cooks."
Noodles and more
However, even if it usually is our parents who cook, lots of teens still like to dabble a little in the kitchen, from making chicken masala to baking chocolate chip cookies.
Rice says that her favorite thing to make is a classic -- "Ramen noodles."
"My favorite thing to make is chicken alfredo, from scratch," says Jake Combe, a senior at Bonneville.
Spencer Davis, a Bonneville senior, says his favorite dish is a turkey-bacon grilled sandwich, Sorenson's specialty is chicken alfredo, and Fenton-Garcia's is his quesadilla.
Even when disasters occur or things just don't turn out right, some teens will keep trying again and again till they get the recipe right.
"I get to eat whatever I cook. And who doesn't like to eat?" said Fremont High sophomore Ashlie Harris.
Durtschi says she loves cooking because "it gives me something to do when I'm bored and it's delicious, so it's a win win!"
"In all honesty, my cooking is pretty disgusting. That would be why I have a foods class," said Spencer.
Harris agrees, saying, "Well, I've never blown up the kitchen or anything like that but I could definitely use more cooking lessons."
Minna Wang is a sophomore at NUAMES. She loves to hang out with friends, listen to music and text. E-mail her at email@example.com.