The Kitchen!

Taking the risk

of being labelled as male chauvinist or misogynist we must say here that somehow the ladies always rule supreme in the kitchen, and in normal circumstances they greatly enjoy their authority. This fact of life must be having its roots in the traditional way of life, with special reference to India. In the olden times the father or the chief householder used to work in the fields or factories or offices, and the homemaker wife used to take care of all domestic chores, including the most crucial job of cooking. As their sons grow up the father seeks their help in the work-sphere, and in case of the girls the mother seeks their help in the kitchen and cleaning. Therefore, the ladies get an expertise in cooking from a very young age.

Males display a variety of sentiments to cooking

let it be in the olden or modern days. Some of them do have great interest in cooking and sincerely help out their wives whenever the need arises or otherwise, and constantly boast of their skills in cooking. And other males constantly boast of their total ignorance about cooking, hoping to elicit understanding laughs from fellow males through this rather discriminating sentiment. To the later variety of males, the ladies react in a hostile manner, for obvious reasons.   slots         And of course, the ladies continue to assert their authority in the kitchen-zone: pulling up the males for dirtying the kitchen or making a mess of their well-maintained kitchen-ware and all, forgetting, unfortunately, to appreciate how well the males prepared the dishes. Obviously, a bedlam would ensue if the items were unpalatable.

The kitchen is also a potential zone

The most serious conflict occurs when there are more than one authoritative ladies in the house: like when a daughter-in-law walks into the household the established mother-in-law would normally resist any kind of interference in her favorite zone, and at the same time may complain that the daughter-in-law is useless and does not want to help her in cooking at all; the daughter-in-law may keep on trying dexterously and may or may not be able to seal her parallel authority in the kitchen, and in case she fails to have her role she would also complain bitterly of an utter lack of freedom and faith. In the Indian joint-family system of the past, all the inhabitants used to constantly focus on how to keep the kitchen politics-free and peaceful. Although we tend to feel that this kind of kitchen-politics is a universal phenomenon, we must not ignore another fact of a lot of glorious exceptions being alive and cooking.

The modern style of nuclear families

has achieved path-breaking results in terms of making the kitchen a fully private zone and totally free of politics, whoever be the cook, male or female. However, some discriminating ignorant males feel that the syndrome of an extremely privatized cooking has robbed the dishes of lip-smacking tastes. Hiring of cooking-maids and the emergence of the food aggregators have further impacted the basic attributes of a kitchen. Again, this is not a generalized scenario, the essential kitchen still exists in all its charms in various homes of various styles and standards.