A Step Too Small

” What type of oil did you cook the squash in?” my husband asked the other day.
“I sauteed it in olive oil and a little butter,” I told him, surprised by the question. A few days ago he asked me how to make salad dressing and memorized the proportion of three parts oil to one part vinegar. My husband does not cook, though he can do a good job of hamburgers or chicken on the grill. And he can fry an egg. But anything fancier than that is beyond him. I got an emergency call from him one Friday night a few weeks ago when I was in Michigan visiting my daughter.

“I’m trying to make frozen pizza for dinner,” he said, a question hanging in the air.
“And?” I responded, confused as to what that question might be.
“What temperature and for how long?”
Now I understood. We had bought a three-pack of DiGiorno pizzas at Sam’s club, and I had to take them out of the box because the box took up too much room in the freezer. Since they were individually wrapped, I didn’t need the box, but of course, the directions were gone.
“Twenty three minutes at 400 degrees,” I said. There was a long pause as he processed that.
“Do I take the cardboard off the bottom before I put it in the oven?” I had to cover the phone so he couldn’t hear my daughter and me laughing hysterically.

So this morning at breakfast I was gratified again when my husband asked another cooking question because I assumed that means he wants to learn how to become more useful in the kitchen. He wanted to know what seasonings I had used in the omelette.
“Fresh basil and a pinch of Aleppo pepper. I’ve noticed you’ve been asking a lot of cooking questions lately. A lot of questions but nothing in practice.”
He smiled. “One step at a time.”

About Coming East

I am a writer, wife, mother, and grandmother who thinks you're never too old until you're dead. My inspiration is Grandma Moses who became a successful artist in her late 70's. If I don't do something pretty soon, though, I'll have to find someone older for inspiration.
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30 Responses to A Step Too Small

  1. At least yours knows how to cook an egg! Isn’t his interest in cooking endearing?

  2. Leah says:

    I love it! Thanks for sharing such a great story.

  3. Hope he’s not planning to “off” you. Has he bought life insurance lately? 😉

  4. pattisj says:

    Mine doesn’t cook, either. I guess he’ll always need me. 🙂

  5. notquiteold says:

    When my nephew went off to college, he called his mother one morning. “I want to make an egg,” he said. “How do I do that?”

  6. Al says:

    That’s exactly why men like George and me, who are clueless in the culinary arts, pick such wonderful wives like you and Patty. Bon appetit!

  7. Huffygirl says:

    Hey, a man who cooks for you is not a bad deal. Maybe he’s been reading that comic strip “jump start” – the character Joe is trying to learn to cook to surprise his wife, who’s been ordering pizza every night.

  8. What a guy! This week thought processes, next week “hands on.”

  9. Ooh, you might be out of a ‘job’ soon! I always tear the cooking instructions off the cardboard box and pin it to the fridge for safekeeping, my memory and confidence always falter when I fish some de-boxed item from the freezer. 🙂

  10. Love this post! My hubby has been asking the same type of questions, but they are only questions. I was on a trip once, and I got a picture via text of one of the frozen meals I had made for him while I was gone. There was a picture of frozen soup and the question, “What is this? How do I fix it?” I totally understand the laughter…

  11. Shary Hover says:

    I feel very lucky that my husband enjoys cooking. However, much as he loves machines of all kinds, he pretends not to understand how the clothes washer works. Sigh.

  12. Oh this makes me laugh. My husband loves to tell me exactly what you said about preparing a DiGiorno frozen (not thawed) pizza. He likes it just a little undercooked. So funny.

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