The first rule of dating is that there are no rules. But hopefully you know that already. So why should you read this, from a person who probably knows less about the secrets to dating success than any given stranger on the subway? Because if you’re reading this, then you probably like to cook. And that in itself holds some powerful dating potential.
Don’t you forget it. It’s all too easy to in this day in age — to just give in to the nicest restaurant in town, maybe one that’s an old favorite of yours, or maybe one that you’ve been itching to try next. A good way to kill two birds with a stone, right? Enjoy a great meal, talk with someone new or new-ish, and if things don’t gel, then at least you got to offer your take on the restaurant in question to your co-worker the next day. The challenge — and opportunity — of cooking for a date is that there is no second bird to kill. Okay, if you consider filling yourself with sustenance one bird, then there’s that. But it’s a sparrow.
You might be saying, but I can multi-task this by cooking something daring and adventurous on a date and learning something new in the process? But I don’t actually recommend doing that: cooking something interesting, adventurous and new for a date. A home-cooked date is an opportunity to show and do what you’re confident about, and show something about yourself in the process.
My friend Diana is on her fifth or sixth date with someone, and recently did this. When I asked her what she cooked for her date, she said it was her “buttermilk roast chicken, my go-to impressive but easy dish.” I have no idea what that is, but it sounds interesting, and likely delicious. And, hopefully, no sweat to pull off. That’s perhaps most important; you don’t want to be a frantic drama queen in the kitchen on your date.
But through the effort of cooking and dining together in your own home you’ll get to know each other better. Isn’t that what dating’s all about? I think it’s better than being in a restaurant, when the time feels right. Truth be told, I’ve talked and written about home-cooked date meals enough times to be completely bored by the topic in verbal medium. But in practice? It’s always an exciting new game.