It's Amanda Lauren X The Kitchn: How Dinner Changed When I Moved in with My Husband

My husband had me at "Chinese food."

The first time we met, we discovered that we grew up just blocks away from each other on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. When I asked him if his family liked to order takeout from China Fun, he recited the phone number. I swooned. Clearly, I thought, food was going to play an important role in our relationship. And it did — just not in the way that I expected it to.

As it turns out, China Fun takeout was basically the only food my husband and I had in common. From early on in our relationship, it was apparent we were not going to reenact the infamous spaghetti scene from Lady and The Tramp. He likes lamb chops; I love quinoa and kale. But our divergent culinary preferences were never an issue — that is, until we moved in together.

Moving into our first place together in Los Angeles, I remember unpacking all the goodies from our registry: All-Clad pans, Wüsthof knives, beautiful Kate Spade dishes, and gadgets galore. I finally had everything I needed to really cook the way I wanted to — not to mention a dream kitchen.

Sure, my bachelorette pad had a kitchen, but the range leaked gas more adequately than it cooked food. By comparison, our new apartment's kitchen had granite countertops, modern stainless steel appliances — the works! It was even smoke-alarm snafu-proof, thanks to cathedral-height ceilings in the living room and French doors leading out to the terrace.

Realistically, I knew I was no Nigella — but still, I was so excited to finally be able to really cook!

(To read the rest of this essay, head on over to The Kitchn)