I'm a cook. It's my passion, it's why I write this blog, and it's one of the things that gets me out of bed in the morning, instead of just pulling up the covers and hoping the world goes away.*
*My first cup of coffee is usually what gets me over that feeling.
I was horrified when I read Michael Pollan's article in the New York Times magazine last Sunday, which finished with a marketing expert saying that home cooking was doomed. We're all going to be getting prepared food from the grocery store in the future, and we'll look at cooking like we look at making our own clothes. [Out of the Kitchen, Onto the Couch, nytimes.com]
I was going to write a post on it immediately, but I couldn't get my thoughts organized enough. That is, until I read Michael Ruhlman's blog post on the same article:
Another segment of our culture who also recognized that we were losing something essential to our humanity learned to cook, out of books, from their moms or grandmothers, from other cooks. And more and more are learning every day.
the multitude of food bloggers out there, who are actually cooking and sharing their stories and photographs and their recipes and most of all their passion. We are not seeing the end of home cooking. I believe we have just begun to cook, and not a moment too soon.
[Julie and Julia, Foodie and Cook, Ruhlman.com]
I'm one of the "multitude of food bloggers" Michael mentions. I've been inspired by other cooks and food bloggers, and I'm writing this blog because I just can't keep my enthusiasm for cooking to myself - I want to share it with anyone who will listen.
Pollan's article HURT when I read it. I feel like I'm part of the wave of people trying to reverse the tide he describes. Like me, they're cooking for themselves, and evangelizing to their friends and family about the pleasures of cooking. But Pollan's article just made it sound so...hopeless. It seems like we're fighting against the tide, and the tide has only just started coming in.*
*Especially when Pollan's Omnivore's Dilemma had such an impact on my evolution as a cook!
But...from where I stand, that's not what I'm seeing! Most of my freinds and family are now the same way I am. We're cooking at home much more than my parents did, or than we did, a decade ago. From where I stand, it looks like the tide is turning back towards home cooking, and has been for a while.*
*Note: my friends and family aren't quite as passionate about it as I am. But then, "insane" might be a better word to describe me than "passionate".
So, once again, Thank you, Michael Ruhlman!
**Ruhlman's distinction between Foodie and Cook is also a great one. I've been referring to myself as a cook for quite a while now, and I think I picked it up from his "Making of a Chef" book. I'm not a chef, and have no desire to be one, but cooking is one of my great joys in life.