31 July 2009

What happened to cooking?

Cooking is one of those things that we, as a society, seem to be doing less and less of these days, and I can't help but wonder what impact this has on our quality of life, health and relationships.

At a time in history where we have more time saving technology around us than ever before, our work hours are steadily increasing. This has a huge impact on cooking and what we eat. We're tired, stressed and hungry. We want to eat, we want to eat now. So we do, reaching for the microwavable, the packaged, the take-away, the convenience.

A woman's place is no longer in the home, she's out and about, carving out a career, picking up the kids and keeping up with the boys in order to prove her so called equality. The kitchen is empty, the cupboard bare, the local take-away is on speed dial and the knowledge, skills and awareness of food and cooking are being lost faster than a Greenpeace boat in pursuit of an illegal whaling ship.

So should the girls drop the ball, get back to the kitchen sink and lace up their apron ties? I think not. But there has to be a solution, a way for all of us to sit at the table and share a meal that was cooked with love and care. Maybe it's about priorities, encouragement, experimentation. What do you think?


  1. Berni, my wife is the primary cook in our house, as she doesn't work outside the home. However, if she did work outside the home, I think we would split the cooking duties. I already cook my breakfasts and some of my lunches. I think the homecooked meals are a real plus with the good eating, but they can be unhealthy too. Either way, I think they are healthier than fast food or the microwave stuff.

    Good food for thought - thanks for sharing.

  2. I took back my food and started cooking. And now we rarely eat anything other than home cooked food. Honestly, it's not such a drag... I'm a 30-minute cook! And we haven't had the same dish in the last two months!

  3. Steve: I'm pretty much the primary cook in my house too, mainly because I work less, and it works really well for us. I think splitting the cooking duties is really where it all lies, as well as a bit of a change in social concepts about women and cooking and keeping a house.

    Hanlie: I love that! Me too, I totally agree not a drag at all, I'm learning so much about myself through cooking. But it's not like that for everyone I know, lucky us :)

  4. I think it's good if we see cooking not as a gendered construct but as something to enjoy as something really good for our health. Even though my parents both had full time jobs while I was growing up, my dad always did the cooking- he really enjoyed it and my mum hated it. It's funny.

    I think if everyone in the family tries to get involved, it can be a very nice bonding experience. Or taking turns works too :)

    - Sagan