Monday, March 20, 2006

It's easier to go out

Americans can't cook. Well, that's not quite true -- but when they do cook they need explicit directions and organizations are "dumbing down" recipes by removing any actual cooking words. Can't say 'saute', or 'cream' or 'dredge' because people just don't understand them. So, instead of assuming that people are smart enough to learn the required words to cook, recipes are just deconstructed to the lowest common denominator.
"Thirty years ago, a recipe would say, 'Add two eggs,' " said Bonnie Slotnick, a longtime cookbook editor and owner of a rare-cookbook shop in New York's Greenwich Village.

"In the '80s, that was changed to 'beat two eggs until lightly mixed.' By the '90s, you had to write, 'In a small bowl, using a fork, beat two eggs,' " she said. "We joke that the next step will be, 'Using your right hand, pick up a fork and ... ."
I can't decide if this is funny, or sad. I hate anyone assuming that we're all so stupid we can't be relied on to perform simple actions without fifteen-step directions. But, there are a lot of people out there who don't understand and are apparently too stupid to look things up. Lazy. If you don't know how to cook, wouldn't you assume that you needed to learn? And if you came across something you didn't understand, you'd look it up? It's not that hard, people!
There was the person who didn't have any eggs for baking and asked if a peach would do instead. One man railed about the fire that resulted when he followed instructions to grease the bottom of the pan — and slathered the pan's outside.
There is a different between genius and stupidity....genius has limits.

1 comment:

The Tiger said...

Einstein's comment applies - "Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the universe."