In a continent where there is a clear divide between the roles of a man and those of the woman in a home, Africans seem to have relegated the art of cooking strictly to the female corner.
But as feminism gets stronger and a shift begins to happen thereby causing some definite changes in the definition of roles for both men and women in Africa, some things that used to be seen as strictly female are no longer so feminine.
The Africa we know today has come a long way from the times when it would have been strictly frowned upon for a man to cook for his family or even so much as bath the kids.
Feminists might have scored one because in as much as we still have a long way to go, men have become some of the best chefs there are and cooking is becoming something either one of the couple can do when the other is indisposed.
Like the great feminist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie said;
“The knowledge of cooking does not come pre-installed in a vagina. Cooking is learned.”
However, after all the battle, something still seems to be missing because now cooking has become something that people can actually take pride in not knowing how to do. Of course, everyone loves a properly cooked meal, but where’s the dignity in loving to eat it but taking pride in not knowing how to cook it.
Why Do Some People Take Pride in not Knowing How to Cook?
So it’s okay to not know how to cook, it’s great to know just how to boil water or burn noodles. That’s not such a big deal. But to actually take pride in it and expect a trophy for not knowing how to do something that is actually a basic survival skill….that’s a whole new level of silly.
Just so we are clear, knowing how to cook is actually dope, it does not make you a nerd or uncool. Cooking is a skill that can get you out of a hungry corner when there is no one around to do the needful.
If you really don’t see any reason why you should know how to cook, here are some points that may convince you to learn this basic survival skill.
1. Cooking has Nothing to do with Gender
If you can eat it, you can learn to make it. Whether you are male or female, you eat food all the time and you enjoy it too. We see cooking as a feminine thing, but if you can eat food and enjoy it, why not learn how to make it?
Yes, fast foods are everywhere, but what happens when you find yourself completely alone at home with no food? Cooking skills are all you need.
While mothers struggle to teach daughters how to cook, why not teach the sons too. You will not just be equipping them for a healthier life, you’ll be equipping them to help themselves when there is no one available.
Fun Fact: Cooking does not diminish manliness, it does not enhance femininity either.
2. It’s Healthy
Seriously, have you seen the amount of oil they use on those fries you love so much? Have you seen the condition in which they prepare your precious fast junk?
In this era of fast food, junk has become the way to go. The more junk, the more calories, the more belly fat and the lazier we become. You hit the gym every day and achieve nothing at the end of the day because, for each calorie you burn, you go back and load 5 more.
But when you cook your own food, it will be fresh, neat, devoid of junk properties and above all, as tasty as you want. So rather than eat food that is not so healthy, why not give your body a break from all the junk and learn how to make healthy food.
3. Cooking Saves Money!
If the reasons above are not enough to make you want to learn how to cook, how about because cooking helps you save.
Have you ever bothered to add up all the money you spend monthly on fast food and see how much it is? Rather than spend a huge chunk of your salary eating food that will not improve your health, why not save cost and cook instead.
Fun Fact: Cooking to save cost does not make you stingy on yourself, it just means you attach value to your health.
4. It Lessens Dependency on Others
You’ll be glad you know how to cook when there’s no one else at home and you are starved. Rather than waiting on that hot new bae/boo to come sweat it out in the kitchen, why not surprise them by proving you are equal to the task.
The good part is that you must not be an expert to impress her/him. Start with what you know and work it up from there. Remember that Google is your ever present help in times of confusion. Also, cooking is a skill that can be learned and polished to expertise by constant practice.
Fun Fact: Even Rachel Ray was once a novice.
5. Cooking is Therapeutic
Have you been looking for a way to unwind or a new hobby to pick up, try cooking. Like they say, food is medicine. But beyond eating your way to wellness, cooking up a storm can do wonders to your spirit.
The experience of making something is rather relaxing and healing. Culinary therapy is catching fire and many healthcare professionals are suggesting people with depression, BP issues, insomnia take up culinary therapy as a part of stress management.