So, I am a food lover. I have (by choice) watched cooking shows since I was two years old. As a teenager, if I had nothing to do, I would read cookbooks over and over again to understand basic technique and recipes. I have been baking for around sixteen years and have been cooking the majority of my meals for about four years and I have come to some conclusions.
Cooking isn’t hard.
Some may want to argue with me. But, really, cooking meals from scratch isn’t hard. The type of cooking that you are most interested in may be difficult–not everyone can be Gordon Ramsey or Ina Garten. But the act of heating and combining foods to make an edible meal is not actually all that complicated, nor is reading a recipe and following the steps.
Which is why the many magazine articles and books dedicated to quick, easy [insert number here] step meals and the bizarre amount of boxed and bagged dinners available in the grocery store bug me: because they imply that all other cooking is too difficult for mere mortals to master.
Honestly, with a small amount of research to understand terms, I’m fairly confident that anyone with proper motor skills and some interest can make just about any recipe. I’m also confident that you don’t need three cans of soup and two packets of dressing mix to make chicken in a crockpot.
No, really, Pinterest.
I mean, anyone can make whatever they want with whatever weird or non-weird ingredients they want. But I just think it unfair for convenience foods to have the corner on the Easy Dinner market. Especially when the “convenience” is often simply that they combined incredibly common ingredients for you (I’m looking at you, pancake mix). Many, many dinners are easy. If you’re looking for hands-off cooking, there are thousands of slow cooker recipes out there that just involve chopping a few things up and chucking them in that Crock Pot Grandma gave you for your wedding. That prep takes all of 15 minutes.
I think I’m just irritated that food is presented as this complex animal that only the truly dedicated can understand, leaving the rest of humanity with their packets of flavoring and boxed dinners. And, if you want to eat those, that’s fine; but don’t feel like you have to eat them because you think cooking is too hard; it really just takes a bit of research and a little bit of time.