The Evolution Of Cookery

Ross Wharton

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Since before time man has used heat to cook foods, although there must have been a time when our ancestors just ate raw meats and vegetables, that was until some entrepreneurial spirit decided to rub a couple of sticks together and discovered fire. Another then though realised he could heat his food on it and then another realised that it tasted better if it was put on spit and raised it out of the flames and used the heat to cook it.

Lets face it we still use these methods today, who has not burnt the crap of something on their barbecue or been to a spit roast. Fire is still used to heat the water that generates steam and drives turbines that create the electricity that we use. So cooking like man has evolved through time, until recently when man has got left behind. These conventional methods of cooking have become so ingrained in so many generations that the technology of cookery has over taken man himself.

Microwave ovens have become part of every kitchen across Western Europe and North America, but they are little more than expensive ornaments, which are completely under utilised. This is because we have become dependant on conventional methods of cookery. Like all products microwaves had there initial problems and there are many taboos that have surrounded them over the years from cooking peoples internal organs and destroying the fibres within them. But lack of education, much of it by the manufacturers of microwave ovens, has lead to the microwave being used in most households as an item to reheat or warm foods through. Understanding how to use a microwave oven is as complex or simple as using a conventional electric or gas oven, but it has not had generations of families cooking with it.

The last twenty years have seen microwaves tested for safety and advances in design mean that they have been made to fit into kitchens of all shapes and sizes. Simple recipes can be found on almost all microwave websites and in all microwave cookbooks, but it is difficult to find training in how to use a microwave and with older generations entrenched in cooking with conventional ovens and passing that knowledge down and the majority of TV cookery programs using convection ovens and steamers, man will not move forward until there is a generation that takes the use of microwaves in cookery more seriously. With global warming at the fore gas and electric ovens need to used less to help conserve the world and slow down the effects of greenhouse gases. The alternative form of heating foods and saving energy is the microwave oven. There is a generation of students using microwave ovens in dorms across the western world, but more needs to be done to get them to explore the benefits of microwave cookery.

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