Sunday, November 4, 2012

Perfect woman cooks

 Salmon with Herbed Sourcream Sauce
New recipe: Salmon with Herbed Sourcream Sauce. This simple one pot dish can be ready to serve in 5-10 minutes. It doesn't get much easier than this. The recipe is available here.

And in case you forgot, November is National Peanut Butter Month.

Today's Favourite Photo
Mentai Salmon Takana Roll

Today’s Favourite Blog
Source: Daily Mail
This article perhaps does not apply to you bloggers, or does it? I am merely summarizing the article, please don’t take it personally or threaten me:)

Research shows that women finally become perfect cooks at the grand old age of 55. At that stage they have learned how to cater for parties of 12 or more, throw together random ingredients to make a decent meal, rescue a dinner that has gone awry, produce 15 meals on a regular basis all cooked from scratch, differentiate between herbs and get all elements of a roast dinner ready at the same time.

Helen Nunn, a woman, and head of marketing at the Co-operative Food conducted the study of 1,000 women. The study also revealed 85 per cent of women aged 55 and over can confidently cook eggs without breaking the yolk on fried eggs or leaving eggs to boil for too long.

Women in their fifties also mastered technology. One in three use a slow cooker when they don’t have time to cook, eight in ten know what every dial on the oven does and a third make frequent use of the food processor. Two thirds of 55-year-olds can confidently cook bread from scratch, a fifth can home-make pasta, and a third can make ice cream without instruction.

When it comes to baking, women in their fifties are more likely to throw in all the ingredients using guesswork compared to other age groups.

The article has a perfect cooks checklist. At 52 years of age, Nigella Lawson is yet to become the 'perfect' cook. Here is the checklist:
·         Make gravy so that it is not runny
·         Can cook fried eggs without breaking the yolk
·         Can cook the perfect boiled egg
·         Cook beef until it’s not tender not tough
·         Cook carrots until they are aldente rather than soggy
·         Cook broccoli which isn’t mushy
·         Can rustle up more than 15 ‘regular’ dishes
·         Can throw random ingredients together to make something delicious
·         Is confident about throwing dinner parties for 12
·         Know what herbs compliment meat
·         Can differentiate between herbs
·         Can get all elements of a roast dinner ready at the same time
·         Can rescue a meal which looks like it is going wrong
·         Can cook bread from scratch
·         Cooks sauces from scratch rather than using jarred alternatives
·         Can make ice cream from scratch
·         Can make pasta from scratch
·         Happy to replicate celebrity recipes
·         Throw ingredients in without weighing when baking
·         Bake cakes such as Victoria sponge and lemon drizzle cake regularly


  1. I'm surprised that that article would say that Nigella couldn't do some of those things, I'd say she could and has for her show and books!

    1. I was surprised also that Nigella is not there yet

  2. See how sexist that is? Why is it a perfect "woman" ... don't men cook as well? Or is it that the men take waaay too long to get to that stage or maybe not at all? Huh. Don't get offended ... not personal, just an observation.
    Looks like we're getting less perfect as the world progresses? During my great-grandma's time, they've been cooking without real measurements daily for huge families and extended families (they all live under one roof, unlike now) and they all have to know to cook that way by the time they get married, which was very young! I'm sure this applies to many parts of the world as well.

    1. Yes!!! And it was a woman to wrote this, which is even more interesting. I was surprised with the findings, the whole article is questionable at so many levels. But interesting nevertheless. Replicating celebrity chef's dishes is one of the criteria - strange.
      I guess cooks are getting less perfect, or should I say 'diners' expectations are changing. Seeing all those dishes on TV, globalisation etc. Now cooks have to know a lot more??? Maybe?

    2. Forgot to mention - the article talks about perfect woman cooks - but is there really a perfect cook? If we reach perfection we cannot progress any further?

    3. Not possible to be perfect ... everyone has an individual preference and taste.

  3. As it is a while before I reach that magical age, there's hope for me yet. xx

  4. Wow that sushi looks awesome, very colourful

  5. The sauce looks really intriguing and I already imagine some other fish instead (I don't like salmon, unless it's wild, but it's very difficult to get). I could happily have it even with potatoes only :-)
    Of course the Daily Mail article concerns British women... I have personally never even tasted gravy, Victoria sponge or lemon drizzle, not to mention preparing them. My bread is French bread like baguette (big holes, very crunchy crust) and this one is practically impossible to make at home (I have never seen it on any blog at least). From what I have noticed people usually prepare dense breads at home. Soggy vegetables are also a question of culture. I have noticed in Europe everyone tends to overcook vegetables while they are often crunchy in Asian households. I could carry on like this with lots of points.
    I only wonder why the author supposes that it's a kind of success or achievement for a woman to be a good cook at a certain point in her life and that it's one of the aims in her life... Old sexist ideas don't die...
    Without paying attention to this sexist idea, I must say that many women I know start spoiling their meals around the age of 55 or 60. It's biological: our tastebuds change or rather start a degradation and it's also logical: as we get older we become less attentive, tend to be forgetful etc.. (I know three women who cook much worse than ten years ago and the process started around exactly this age: they put more salt, cook everything too much, even cakes, add loads of sugar everywhere and exagerrate with seasonings (not chili alas because this I would welcome with joy!)).

    1. Its wild salmon, I bought it frozen.
      I have never tasted lemon drizzle cake but have heard about it - therefore I cannot be a perfect woman cook either:)
      I think you solved the mystery. You say three woman you know started overcooking, add lots of sugar etc. Overcooked veges and sweet desserts is British - so it seems as woman get older they cook perfect British meals:) I still remember hostel food - veges cooked to death, desserts loaded with sugar...
      This article was very questionable. I wonder what motivated the researcher to do this, and to even publish it. At least we understand certain peoples perspectives

  6. LOL! If Nigella is not there yet, I'm like 100 years behind. I'm always curious how you find these interesting articles. ;) Thanks for sharing it with us!

    1. Nigella must be disappointed too. Now she has to work even harder:)

  7. ha ha ha, OK so I am 38 but I pass for 26 but I cook like a 55 year old woman! Nice quick salmon recipe.