Thursday, April 26, 2018

Cooking things up

The kitchen has always been a magical place for me.  Maybe because I started hanging around the kitchen right from when I can remember.  Why wouldn't I with all the awesome aromas and the chance to taste dishes and sweets and snacks right off the flame?  Oh that taste of butter that was churned right in front of my very eyes!

The excitement of the magic hasn't worn away even one bit.  I try, in my own ways, to create that magic and share it.  But, I know well that I am a part of a tiny minority.  We are practically an endangered species.  Barely ten percent of Americans love cooking.  Barely ten! "Only 10% of consumers now love to cook, while 45% hate it and 45% are lukewarm about it."  We can expect a lot more of the percentage to shift from the lukewarm category to hate.

It might seem bizarre that fewer amongst us like to cook even as the number of cooking shows has significantly grown, along with a tremendous growth in the number of people watching those shows.  "our fondness for Food TV has inspired us to watch more Food TV, and to want to eat more, but hasn’t increased our desire to cook."  Most people are mere spectators watching those shows, similar to how they are spectators when it comes to many other forms of entertainment--from wrestling to football to reality shows!

The trend is one in which people opt to buy prepared meals--the prepared ones in the grocery stores or made-to-order in restaurants.  People don't even brew their morning coffee at home, it seems like.  Why else would there be long lines at coffee kiosks?  At this rate, homes and apartments of the future might not even have to "waste" space for kitchens!

I wonder what people do with the time that they have from not spending it on shopping for groceries, preparing meals, and cleaning up the kitchens.  Is Facebooking and Instagramming that much a valuable use of time?  The government's "time use survey" from 2016 gives us an idea:

Notice how small that bar is across "household activities"?  Let's look at the breakdown of that category:

Food preparation and cleanup registers at barely half-an-hour a day, on an average.  At that low average number of hours, the best one could do is warm up frozen burritos in the microwave!

Oh well, I suppose this is yet another aspect of life in which I am out of step with the majority.  Time for me to have some home-made food ;)