Originally Posted by Steve Kroll
I find it surprising that 20 minutes is the "average." That means that a lot of people are spending LESS than 20 minutes.
On average, I seem to spend about 45 minutes in the kitchen every night. And that's just cooking for myself. It's time that I enjoy, though.
I think probably that the 20 minutes is the average because a lot of people just stop and buy fast food in the drive thru window, so their food prep time is effectively zero. Then you got all the folks throwing a Red Baron pizza and some Ore-Ida fries or tots in the oven for 20 minutes.
Maybe they're trying to relive their childhood memories of the little pizza squares and tots in the school lunch program.
We were helping a young woman get back on her feet (program at church), and she was blowing through her food stamps in like the first week/week and a half. She only got like $100/month. We drove her to the local store. I noticed she was only picking out processed food like frozen pizzas, Jimmy Dean breakfast sandwiches, Ore-Ida products, TV dinners, etc..
We tried to suggest that she buy whole foods instead. "I can't cook in my kitchen; I don't have any trash bags or cleaning products." We went there and the kitchen was a mess. She had dirty dishes piled everywhere on the counters and in the sink and had trash everywhere. I threw all the garbage away in a large bag and took it out. Then we helped wash her dishes. She had no pots and pans. I bought her a basic set at Goodwill for $20. Wife taught her to cook basic stuff like a grilled cheese sandwich, how to make a pot of soup, a hamburger, chicken casserole, lasagna, etc.. She grew up in a broken home and was never taught how to cook or clean.
Food knowledge is a given for most of us; it's a shocker when you come across someone who lacks it.