Some people are born with a cookbook in one hand and a spatula in another. Unfortunately, I am not some people, but I absolutely love food – every spicy morsel of a home-cooked meal felt like a slice of heaven when I was growing up. My mom wasn’t having it though. Like many African mothers, she was of the opinion that cooking was the girl’s duty and set about making me a first-class chef. After a few lessons, her expectation was considerably lowered from making a chef out of me to getting me to at least cook what could be considered edible.
One fateful day, I set about to make yam porridge. Ordinary yam porridge o. I had seen how it was made countless times and was finally going to make it without supervision. With the battle supplies ready aka cooking utensils, I started to make the dish. It was a disaster but I like to blame it on the fact that I was really hungry before I started cooking. I had no patience to wait for the food to get properly cooked. By the time I cot it out of the pot, the yam was as hard as granite, swimming in a bubbly pot of red oil. #Sigh
Everybody that was served the food looked at it like it was a death sentence. Even my brothers who would eat literally anything could not mask their disinterest. Eventually, we resorted to noodles for dinner and my cooking duties were suspended from that day. Till d, my mom still teases me about that experience, though she kindly adds that at least the food was not burnt.
Gradually, I got better with the whole cooking stuff, especially when I got into school and had to fend for myself. It’s still not a hobby or something I remotely enjoy per se, especially when it’s regarded as my duty. However, I noticed I actually did better when I was doing it for fun and not balancing the expectations that being female was synonymous with being a great cook on my slender shoulders.
To be honest, the stereotype about women belonging in the kitchen is old and tired. I just wish more women are given the freedom to decide what they enjoy and what other chores interest them. No doubt, cooking is great, especially if you like food and you don’t want to be broke. But my sis. if you don’t like the feel of the kitchen, find what works for you and don’t allow people to stress you out.
Had any memorable misses in the kitchen, share in the comments