Gosh, this blog can be so one-sided. How sick are you of hearing nonstop touting of the institution of cooking and eating in? Sometimes even I am. Which is why I decided to have a chat on the topic with my good friend Jordan, who once confessed to me a few months after moving into her Brooklyn apartment that she had never “even heated anything up” in it.
Since I’ve surrounded myself with so many incredible foodies and home chefs these past few months, I seem to have fallen out of touch with why cooking doesn’t work for everyone. I know very well some of Jordan’s reasons for not not eating out, like her wickedly busy schedule. But what else is it that separates the one persuasion from the other? I thought it high time to let the opposition speak.
Q&A with Avid Not-home Cooker Jordan R.
Occupation: Copy Editor
Main 3 reasons for why you don’t find yourself cooking very often?
Can I give more than three?
1. I’m impatient — by the time I get home from work, I just want to eat, not spend time making dinner.
2. I suck at cooking, which kind of relates to no. 1; For example, my impatience leads me to take pasta out of the water too early, before it’s fully cooked.
3. I really don’t like my kitchen. No matter how hard I clean it, it never seems clean enough to make me want to make food in it.
4. I have a weird phobia of leftovers.
5. Because I don’t like to eat day-old (or older) food, it doesn’t seem cost-effective to make full meals just for me.
Okay, so feel free to attack my weird logic.
(Okay then — if it weren’t for the notion of using leftovers we might never have invented foods like the meatloaf, fried rice, even soups! — Ed.)
What’s one thing that you wish you could cook but can’t?
Rice, fish, chicken, Pad Thai. Oh, and soups!
(Here’s a friendly Pad Thai tip — Ed.)
What kind of things can you credit yourself with knowing how to make at home?
Sandwiches and spaghetti.
If you had to choose between your favorite mom-cooked meal and your favorite restaurant meal, which would you pick (and what are they)?
My favorite meal would probably be Pad Thai, but everything my mom makes is delicious. (Same goes for my dad.)
Do you find that people with eating restrictions can be pretty annoying when you’re trying to just have a nice meal with them (such as “I’m allergic to wheat”/ “I’m a vegan” / and yes, even “I can’t eat out.”)?
I was vegetarian/vegan for about 7 years, so I totally understand it when others have eating restrictions. It doesn’t bother me. What does bother me is when people go on about vegetarianism or veganism. To me it’s one of the most boring topics of conversation. (Yes, I was probably guilty of it when I first took up veganism.)
(I guess same must be true for people who go on about not eating out. — Ed.)
What is your worst disaster with cooking, if any?
I tried to bake tear-shaped cookies with blue sprinkles for a coworker’s last day, but I forgot/didn’t realize that, uh, cookie dough expands. So my carefully cut out tears turned into weird, misshapen blobs. I guess that’s not really a disaster, but it was disappointing.
Best part about eating out in NYC?
There’s so much delicious food to be had!