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Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

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Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by LizzyNY on Mon 14 Aug 2017, 16:04

Like Carolhathaway I learned to cook when I was very young. Mostly my grandmother taught me. She was amazing! My mom was a working mother, but she was a pretty good cook, too. We rarely ate out and delivery amounted to an occasional pizza when mom came home too tired to cook. Basically, eating food prepared by someone else outside our home was just too expensive to do on a regular basis. Besides, cooking with my mom and grandmother was fun!

Now that I'm "all growed up" and cook out of necessity as well as choice, I still get satisfaction out of knowing that I can prepare a good meal all on my own if I have to. So, I can cook, I do cook, and I will cook whenever I want to - and I won't cook whenever I don't.

Obviously Amal doesn't have to cook. She has many options and the money to avail herself of all of them. Good for her! I think what rankles with me, being a teacher, is someone being willfully ignorant - especially of a skill so easily mastered. You can't do brain surgery? Gotcha! Neither can I. It's really, really hard.  Can't boil an egg? Grow up! If you can read you can follow a recipe.
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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by PigPen on Mon 14 Aug 2017, 16:55

Refer to my posts on Recipe Sharing and Food Talk to learn where I stand on this topic.  tongue

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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by annemarie on Mon 14 Aug 2017, 18:22

If you don't like something why do it? Not everyone wants to cook if I didn't have to I wouldn't.
If I could have a cook or eat out every night I would. I didn't know how to cook when I got married never was interested. I had to learn once I had a family I like to eat still don't like cooking I'd rather do something else anything but cook.
I think women who's husbands like to cook are lucky I wish mine did lol.

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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by LizzyNY on Mon 14 Aug 2017, 19:02

annemarie - There's a difference between not liking to do something and not knowing how. If you don't like it, and can afford not to - well, then don't! I just think there are certain things everyone should know how to do when they grow up and cooking is one of them, (Laundry and managing your personal finances are a couple of others.) I'm not saying everyone HAS to cook. I'm just saying everyone should know how.
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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by carolhathaway on Mon 14 Aug 2017, 20:47

A friend just told me that two young men asked her for help in a supermarket. They wanted to know how to make potatoes. She said: "Buy them, wash them, peel them, put them in a pot with steaming hot, lightly salted water, cook them until they are refined."
Then they started to ask:
How many potatoes do we need for everyone?
How hot is steaming hot water?
How much water do we need?
How much salt do we use?
How do we know when they are refined? Can't you tell us exactly how long the potatoes need to cook?
They didn't know just the basics, were absolutely helpless about that. My friend asked them if they had never helped their parents to cook, and they said that they were always sent away , were told that they interrupted their parents and that it took them too long when they wanted to help. Of course it takes longer when my kids want to help, and our kitchen is really small, but I would never send them away...
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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by carolhathaway on Mon 14 Aug 2017, 20:56

Do you know what is as bad as 'having no clue on how to boil water and would starve in front if a filled fridge'? At least IMO? A household without any dishes or cutlery except of disposable ones.
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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by Way2Old4Dis on Mon 14 Aug 2017, 21:26

I'm no chef, but I like preparing my food the way I like it, and knowing exactly what's in what I eat. There are a few restaurants I really like, but for the most part I really prefer to eat at home.

Lizzy, you're right about finances and laundry. (My other personal line item is properly cleaning a bathroom.) I've made some huge financial mistakes in my life, and made sure my daughter learned from my hard lessons. She's a stickler at it.

I really only have to fend for myself, so it would be easy to do takeout all the time. Just not my preference.

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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by premiere on Tue 15 Aug 2017, 01:32

Like Carol, I learned to cook and love it mostly because that was how I spent time with my beloved grandmother. My husband can't even boil water so I prepare all the meals. That being said, he and I both clean up afterwards.

I think that whoever is the better cook should do the cooking, and the other person should help out with the setting up and cleaning up. I think we are all past the assigned gender roles. I also think it's pretty diva-ish when someone sits on her butt and lets the other person clean up.
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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by Katiedot on Tue 15 Aug 2017, 03:45

I love cooking - it's one of my passions although I live in staff accommodation where there's no kitchen and no option to cook so I've spent most of my adult life not cooking. When I'm near a kitchen though, oh boy! Because I don't HAVE to cook, I love it.

LizzyNY wrote:Obviously Amal doesn't have to cook. She has many options and the money to avail herself of all of them. Good for her! I think what rankles with me, being a teacher, is someone being willfully ignorant - especially of a skill so easily mastered. You can't do brain surgery? Gotcha! Neither can I. It's really, really hard.  Can't boil an egg? Grow up! If you can read you can follow a recipe.
Yeah, I hear you, but still I don't see why that's a problem. Cooking isn't a skill easily mastered by everyone (I still have friends who - after 20 bloody years - still can't cook) anymore than riding a bicycle or swimming are easy for everyone. If it's something that's just not important or interesting to a person, then they won't learn how to do it, no matter how easy it may be for others.
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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by LizzyNY on Tue 15 Aug 2017, 13:42

Katie - "Can't" isn't my problem with people who don't cook (or any other basic skill). I'm not saying they have to love it or become master chefs. If they've tried and can only boil water, well at least they tried.

"Can, but I don't"  doesn't bother me either. There are lots of things I know how to do, but don't.

"Can't and I'm proud of it" is what bothers me. Ignorance is nothing to celebrate. It isn't "cute", and not everyone is going to enjoy catering to your wants. At least know the basic skills to take care of yourself, because some day you may have to.
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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by Katiedot on Tue 15 Aug 2017, 16:32

Just to play devil's advocate here, there are some who'd say that cooking isn't a basic skill nowadays; being able to pick up the phone and order food in is. tongue

Look, I understand what you're saying and I don't disagree with you entirely. Where we differ is in the importance of being able to cook for someone who's rich and urban.

------------------------

If we're talking specifically about Amal (not sure that we are now), then I'd question a few assumptions that seem to be being made about her by several posters.

1. I wouldn't take George Clooney absolutely literally about Amal not being able to cook a single thing. He exaggerates for humorous effect: remember how he claimed not to be able to sing although we know he's got a fine voice? He's just not a singer on a professional-level, it's not that he's tone deaf and croaks like a raven.

2. So far as I can tell, there's no indication that Amal's proud of not being able to cook.

As I imagine it (just my thoughts), her pre-married working life consisted of long hours in an office, grabbing a dinner - or more likely a few drinks and some nibbles - with a colleague or friend before heading home to catch up on emails and more work, probably in bed. Or dinner with clients. Lunch might be a sandwich or salad from one of the many takeaway places in London and I'm not sure she's a breakfast type of person - maybe a coffee and supposedly healthy bran muffin. When she's travelling, food comes from the hotel or dinner with clients.

What I've written describes the food habits of a large chunk of the white collar working London population. I think I mentioned it on the other thread that not cooking at all is so prevalent nowadays that they're building flats that don't have kitchens in as it's a space that's not needed.
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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by PigPen on Tue 15 Aug 2017, 16:47

"Can't and I'm proud of it" is what bothers me,,,,,

Lizzy- I understand what you're saying.   Can't recall the date or restaurant- but she and he were dining with Nina in NY.  The owner presented her with his new cook book, and she allegedly said I don't cook.  Made me cringe. I recall several comments from our gang at COH basically saying take the book and shut up.  

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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by Katiedot on Tue 15 Aug 2017, 16:49

At Patsy's restaurant, New York, and the quote was: ""Are you expecting me to cook? I don't cook!""

Can also be said in a joking way.

But yes, I thought it was ungracious to not take the recipe book.
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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by PigPen on Tue 15 Aug 2017, 16:53

Katiedot wrote:At Patsy's restaurant, New York, and the quote was: ""Are you expecting me to cook? I don't cook!""

Can also be said in a joking way.  

But yes, I thought it was ungracious to not take the recipe book.
JMO- that wasn't a joking type of comment- sounds caustic and rude no matter how it's said.

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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by Katiedot on Tue 15 Aug 2017, 16:57

For someone who doesn't like a single thing that Amal says or does, yes it could sound caustic. But it really doesn't have to be - it can be self-deprecating too.
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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by PigPen on Tue 15 Aug 2017, 17:30

Katie- do you really think she'd be self depreciating, especially in public.....  LOLOLOLOLOLOL


(what ever you're sipping on, can I have some, pleaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaase??)

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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by LizzyNY on Tue 15 Aug 2017, 17:42

Reading some of the comments makes me think maybe there's a cultural difference at work here. We don't have the history many of you do of having a privileged class accustomed to being catered to - and a system that has for centuries supported that privilege.

There are wealthy, entitled elitists here in the US, too, (our moron President is a perfect example) but I think our attitude towards them may be less accepting. More like: the fact that you're one of the elite doesn't make you better than anyone else, just luckier. And, until recently, they haven't been seen to be above the law even if they believed they were.

Sorry to have drifted so far off topic. Embarassed

(Just to clarify - I haven't been talking about Amal specifically, although her "I don't cook" stance is what inspired the original question.)
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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by Rachel on Tue 15 Aug 2017, 21:13

I'm a passionate cook but if I were that rich I wouldn't mind having a chef around helping me with my recipes - what's wrong about that! 
@Katiedot would it have been so difficult to just take the book with a smile and say I actually don't cook but thank's, its very kind of you, I'll have a look in it - that's what you call being diplomatic and polite - she's a lawyer! 
I don't think it's about everything she says is not liked, she was liked in the beginning of the relationship! 
It's a matter of good behaviour and style, she definitely sometimes has a lack of that!

SORRY FOR THOSE WHO FEEL OFFENDED!!!
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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by annemarie on Tue 15 Aug 2017, 21:19

I think the fact is no one was there  and humor can be lost in translation.  

We have heard that she has a great sense of humor George apparently loves that about her.

I think to be fair you would have had to be there to see and hear her it could simply be a joke between

her and George. George is a prankster , we have never heard a thing from Amal on anything other than her work.

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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by Rachel on Tue 15 Aug 2017, 21:29

@annemarie, we are all free to have our OPINIONS and thats all we have - NO FACTS!!!
Important to me is acceptance of that and to keep on being respectful to each other!
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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by party animal - not! on Tue 15 Aug 2017, 22:18

Yep, and it's by-the-by what we think. George doesn't care. He adores her and she's probably had different priorities all her life - and has owned a microwave!

Another point for what it's worth is that a large number of Lebanese food recipes don't necessarily require cooking......tabbouleh, which George has said they have a lot of, for example.





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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by annemarie on Tue 15 Aug 2017, 22:32

Definitely, Pan he does adore her so her lack of cooking skills were not an issue for him.

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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by Donnamarie on Wed 16 Aug 2017, 04:48

I recall the story at Patsy's.  Amal and George did take the cookbook.  The comment she made was in a joking manner.

I love to cook, especially Italian.  I love to bake too.  Love desserts.  For a while my love of cooking rubbed off on my son who was really good at it through college but now doesn't have the time.  My daughter has gotten into dessert baking too.  I guess my whole family enjoys cooking.  It's not just because we love to eat, which we do, but it's the whole process.  Finding interesting recipes and experimenting.  I have more time to really enjoy it all now that I'm not raising kids.
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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by Alisonfan on Thu 17 Aug 2017, 02:31

I was young I want to impress my bf I say also I cannot to cook an egg.I think it make me look important person to busy to cook just to eat out of fancy restaurant. Now I think back i was trying to be all grown up equal woman equal to man! Now I much older wiser I think I act to be silly back then. I impress nobody.

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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by What Would He Say on Thu 17 Aug 2017, 11:13

I read recently that in 25 years(?) people will view kitchens and home cooking the way we look at quilting now...a hobby for very few....That restaurants and supermarkets will conspire together, as they will be owned by the same people, to make it cheaper to eat out than buy ingredients.....

So the future is against us....


I believe everyone has a dish in them.....

If you live on ready meals....learn to poach an egg....make it the best egg, with a super orange yolk, salt it with a homemade basil salt....top with grass fed Irish butter....sit back and taste heaven.....The salt will last 2 years and take an hour...the butter you can portion and freeze....all you then have to do is buy an expensive egg once in a while.....Then you will be the best cook in town....
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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by carolhathaway on Thu 17 Aug 2017, 13:38

WWHS,
but this future only happens when our technics progresses the way it does now. I remember that my parents grew everything they needed in their garden and preserved it, mostly by boiling it down. Boiled-down pears and apples were great, strawberries and raspberries well, were horrible. They also preserved potatoes and onions and other vegetables and slaughtered a pig or a cow every fall. When my parents could afford it, they bought a huge freezer, and everything was kept in the cellar. We bought fresh milk from the farm next door. I hardly remember them to buy lots of food in the supermarket.

I hate working in the garden, any my parents prefer to buy most of their food in the supermarket now as well, so do I. I do know the advantages and disadvantages of both, to know where it grows and that no chemistry was used, but also having to eat the same vegetables for weeks, the same meat because it's there and needs to be eaten, also to work hard in the garden, and one storm or est infestation destroys everything.
But we're still used to cook, so if there should be a time where we won't be able to go to restaurants or buy pre-cooked meals (there could be many reasons), we'd still be able to survive. My mother even still has a wood stove in the kitchen. When we kids were little, there was a power blackout in winter and she realized that, if this lasted several hours, she wouldn't be able to keep us warm and feed us properly. She panicked so badly that my parents installed this oven in the kitchen (and of course they've got firewood as well), so this keeps her relieved.
Too many negative thoughts? I don't know, but my parents were born before WW II, so I think that's simply their experience...
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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by LizzyNY on Thu 17 Aug 2017, 13:59

I think there will always be people who love to farm and garden. They just love to see things grow.

NY is truly covered in concrete, yet a gentleman down the street planted a vegetable garden in the front yard of his apartment building! He grew corn, tomatoes, sunflowers and more. He stopped after a couple of years because people kept stealing his crops before he could pick them himself! Very Happy But he hasn't given up. Last year he planted two peach trees and two apple trees. They haven't fruited yet, but he has high hopes!
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Re: Can't, Don't or Won't Cook? Which one are you?

Post by Donnamarie on Thu 17 Aug 2017, 14:56

I see it that way too Lizzy. Where I live more and more people are interested especially in growing organic veggies and fruit. There is this renewed appreciation for homegrown eating. I think the overprocessing of food and the overuse of pesticides and chemicals in store bought food items has led to a bit of a turnaround. There are so many farmers markets where I live that enjoy tremendous popularity in neighborhoods. It's not necessarily cheaper to eat healthy and that is really unfortunate for those who struggle to being home a paycheck every week.

Carol, our parents and grandparents always relay stories of how daily living was so different than what is is now. Guess we will do the same as we get older Very Happy Changes in lifestyle and techno advances are to be expected and most are appreciated. I have no interest in gardening fruits and veggies simply because personally it's hard work and I'm not good at it. But even with the convenience of supermarkets and farmers markets I still enjoy cooking. Most of my friends and family do too. I just don't see a turn away from the home kitchen. It's still the center of most households.

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