Michael Pollan recently wrote an article in The New York Times Magazine , “Out of the Kitchen, onto the Couch, How American Cooking Became a Spectator Sport, and What We Lost Along The Way.” Ironically we are spending 27 minutes a day on food prep and many of us are spending much more time watching food being prepared and cooked on the latest televised cooking shows.
In his article, Pollan asks questions such as: Why has every day cooking declined? Is it that more women are working? Are food companies doing the cooking for us? Does cooking …or not affect our physiological and psychological well being?
David Cutler of Harvard University finds that the less we cook food the more calories we eat. He concludes that obesity rates are inversely related to the amount of time spent cooking. I know that for my family, cooking at home allows me to control ingredients: how much sugar, salt and especially fat goes into the meal. It is more economical, nutritious and tasty to have fresh ingredients prepared and presented to my family.
That does not mean that every night we have a dinner cooked from scratch, what is does mean however is that we eat together as often as possible, assemble a meal on many nights and more importantly connect. There is work involved in cooking- mostly the planning of what to eat and then prep time. Ultimately, cooking results in the gratification of time spent together enjoying a meal and each other.