Why Cook?

By Laura Moncur @ 1:16 pm — Filed under:

This old commercial for Kentucky Fried Chicken got me thinking:

The premise of the commercial is, “When there is great chicken like this, why cook?”

Why indeed? Not only is there chicken, but I can find any kind of food that I would want almost any time of the day. Why should I ever cook? I thought about it and here are a couple of reasons cooking is still a good idea:

When I cook, I choose the ingredients

I know EXACTLY what is going into that fried chicken when I cook it myself. There are no mysterious blends of 11 herbs and spices. I have COMPLETE knowledge. Instead of my choices being taken away, I can choose to cook with healthy oil, whole wheat flour and free-range chicken. I can be eating the SAME food, but know it is healthier.

I feel more connected

There is a sense of accomplishment with cooking and I feel more connected to my meal when I cook it. Even if it is a grilled sandwich, it is better when I’ve made it for myself than when I’ve grabbed one through the drive-thru window. There is something to be said for the pride of cooking.

It doesn’t take that long

I always imagine getting fast food to be so much more faster than just whipping something up at home, but when I time it, cooking usually wins. If I have all the ingredients in my cupboards, fridge and freezer, I can beat the drive-thru window every time. It’s easy to forget how time consuming just getting into the car and going to the restaurant can take. With traffic, long lines at the window and the drive back, I can usually have a meal made at home in just as much time.

It’s not that hard

As good as the Food Network has been to inspire people to cook, I think it has done just as much harm. Meals don’t have to be something like Martha Stewart would serve. They can be simple, easy to make and ugly. Making food pretty is important in a restaurant or a photo-shoot, but when your are making food at home, it doesn’t have to look gorgeous. Frankly, when you get food at a fast food restaurant, it NEVER looks like those commercials, so you really don’t have much to compete with.

After all this thought, the words still linger in my head. “Why cook?” The real question should be, “Why not?”


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