By Jonas M Luster, Food writer
You asked for hacks, not for a step-by-step which means I like you already. Here's some hacks.
This is a fun exercise. Don't make it a chore. Enjoy yourself, sing loudly in the kitchen, make some noise, and never, ever, let anyone tell you to stop or do something differently just "because that's not how it's done."
 I just recently bought a book about Somali cuisine and started cooking Somali dishes. Some of the stuff is... odd... but I learned a thing or two about baking and braising I didn't know, yet.
 Rule: if it tastes good, use it. Then, when everything else is 100% replace that with your own version and make it taste even better.
More questions on cooking:
- Why do dishes prepared outside of their country of origin so often miss the mark?
- What dishes have the worst effort-to-results ratio?
- What is the most sinfully delicious / evil food you have ever actually eaten?