No, you cannot build nuclear missiles with bottle gourds. No, you wouldn’t be able to blast through buildings and scale walls only with the help of a plate of spaghetti. No, you can’t turn invisible after eating sago khichdi.
But the things you can do with this superpower are way better than the things you can do with supersonic speed or telekinesis.
Here’s why cooking is the only non-fictional superpower.
How many times have you returned home, hungry as an empty pot and chilled to the bone? Didn’t your mom’s warm food and piping hot tea bring back all the happy memories and make you cheerful again?
Every living being needs to eat. There have been instances where people have survived for days on end on just water. But food is something more than just a means to stay alive.
Serving food at parties could have an ulterior motive. Maybe the buffet table brings people from all walks of life together? Maybe you turn out to be more polite than usual when you ask a server for an extra helping? Maybe you start appreciating different methods people use to get food into their stomach? Maybe you start being a little more tolerant about people when you comprehend the reason they eat certain foods and forgo the others?
Isn’t this exactly the thing we need to do to sustain life in the world in the ages to come, and prevent undue deaths just because of hunger and desperation?
When a new neighbour arrives, what do you do to make them feel welcome? Carry some eatables and a smile on your face and walk right in through an open door. You ask a few questions, and propose to help them. And they almost never turn down your offer. Maybe the wisps of fragrant aroma from the pulao did the trick. Or the masala chai poisoned their mind.
Anyway, you’ve got a new friend in your neighbour. All thanks to something you cooked.
An apple keeps the doctor away. A bowl of spinach makes your muscles strong. A serving of walnuts helps you score an A grade. A tomato keeps your heart ‘hale and hearty’. A bowl of chicken soup drives the flu away. A sprig of basil clears up that upset tummy.
You could give Madam Pomfrey a run for her money with your cooking.
Maybe broken cooking utensils can’t be fixed. Maybe that over-excited microwave can’t stop itself from breaking expensive glass bowls. Maybe the ginger crusher likes to keep some ginger for itself as a perk while it works for you.
Maybe cooking cannot overcome these difficulties, but it can heal broken relationships like a magic wand.
You could either prepare a peace-offering for your loved one. Or you could cook one together (if you can stand being in the same room). In the first method, it would be pretty clear that you are willing to sacrifice one, maybe two, hours of your hectic day. Just to make an effort, that may or may not be successful. Maybe your loved one will understand the hidden meaning of your gesture, and give you a second chance.
The second method brings a much more radical change. The only requisite, as I mentioned earlier, is that you two need to be on talking terms. The rest is quite simple: Prepare either a biryani, or a cake together. The procedure to create these complicated yet tasty dishes will bring you both together in a very meaningful way. It could be via a simple delegation of tasks in the kitchen. This helps you understand what the other is scared of doing, or what he/she is great at doing. I don’t need to mention the teamwork part here. Also, you have a ready-made excuse to talk, or not talk to each other. You can act like frying onions isn’t a task that requires 100% attention. Or pretend to be real interested in the way eggs disintegrate when they are whisked.
A simple exercise regimen with the result of a tasty treat:
Walk into the kitchen. Pull open the fridge door. Bend down to get the veggies. Walk to the sink. Stand there and wash the veggies properly. Cut the vegetable into fine juliennes, or gigantic dices, or any random shape of your desire (and skill). Toss them into a frying pan. Stir fry the greens. Shake in some masalas. Wait for it to cook. Wash the serving bowl and cutlery. Get out of the kitchen. Get the dining table ready. Invite everyone at home down to the dining table. Go back to the kitchen. Plate the food and make it look attractive. Carry the serving bowl and cutlery out.
And then, finally, enjoy your tasty treat.
It goes without saying that you spend almost every minute in the kitchen standing. You lose 50 calories an hour by just standing. If you manage to cook for at least two hours a day for five days a week you can get 500 calories out of your system. If you allot weekends for exclusive baking sessions, or a heavy home-made lunch, your weekly average could increase to 1000 calories.
Plus, you don’t have to guzzle a protein shake after this workout session.
When was the last time you actually sat down and wrote more than a page in a notebook? Think about it.
With almost everything going digital, it only makes sense that our recipes go to Evernote. It’s easy to search for recipes via mobile applications or the Internet. There’s no denying that. But nothing can beat the feel and charm of checking a recipe from handwritten notes, passed down from generation to generation. Maybe you copied a recipe from the library’s copy of a women’s magazine. Maybe you overheard some grannies discussing how to make mango pickle last longer. Maybe you tried out a foodie experiment, and it took you seven hundred and seventeen attempts to get it right. Maybe divine intervention helped you understand the secret ingredient to your mom’s heavenly broth.
Wouldn’t it be better if you just wrote down these strokes of inspiration? You cannot keep your phone anywhere near the stove, oven, sink or fridge. What if an accidental spill ruins that iPhone for life?
Do I need to give you a better excuse to start writing with a pen and paper?
Which superpower makes you feel good about yourself? Does superhuman strength really boost your ego? Or does being invisible make you feel safe?
Won’t a slab of chocolate or a bowl of strawberries or a cup of chamomile tea do the trick faster?
Won’t baking a banana bread make you feel happier? Or the fragrance of fresh herbs help you feel refreshed?
And even if you are in such a dark mood that you cannot cook, go to a restaurant and treat yourself with the most appetising, most sexiest dish. If not your own cooking, someone else’s will burst those blues.
Does this theory prove that cooking is a superpower? Say aye or nay in the comments!
Calorie information sourced at BBC News.