hours in the day to cook meals from scratch

“The time issue is a hard one,” he concedes. “But people have
navigated this in the past, cooking several things on a Sunday
and freezing them, for example. We find time for things we value
and my theme in this book and in all my work is that food is too
important to neglect. In the last 10 years we’ve somehow found
two hours [a day] to surf the Internet - where did that time come

  • Michael Pollan, debunking the notion that there aren’t enough
    hours in the day to cook meals from scratch. Pollan is author
    of In Defense of Food: An Eater’s Manifesto and The Omnivore’s


When I was working and we were living (most of the time) in SoCal, I had a rule - no more than 15-20 minutes from start of preparation to sitting down at the table. We ate mostly grilled or broiled meat or fish and a vegetable. I usually de-glazed the pan for sauce for the fish or meat. Sometimes if i had a compatible sauce left-over from the weekend, I’d use that. Most days i picked up the meat or fish and vegetable on the way home from work. If I didn’t find anything interesting, we went out to eat.

In the last few years when Carollee’s blood pressure and cholesterol rose dramatically, we added pasta and risottos to our diet. They took five or so minutes longer - 18 minutes for risotto and time to bring the water to a boil (highly variable) and then 10-12 minutes to cook the pasta.

When we lived both places, we cooked very little in Santa Fe, usually going to our favorite restaurants. Now that we’re both retired and living full-time in Santa Fe, it takes many things a lot longer to cook, but we have the time.

to me, cooking quickly takes all the fun out of cooking … most of the meals I prepare take a minimum of 90 minutes. If I could cook while at work, I would.

If its a second hobby that complements the first its not work, right?

I never thought if it as cooking quickly, just selecting components of the meal that didn’t require a lot of prep and cooking. That was a challange.

Exactly. I agree–for me, the fun is preparing a nice meal. Of course, a quality meal can be done quickly but to me, its just not as fun.

Not too long ago, I asked a friend of mine who’s a chef at a gastronomic restaurant, “What do you cook when you’re home.” Pasta, he replied. “Do you make it from scratch?” I asked. “Of course not” was his reply. I told him that I often make pasta at home from scratch. “You must be pretty bored” he said…and I guess he’s partially right! [laughingneqw.gif]