The blokes who cook (but don't do dishes)

Last updated 05:00 21/06/2014
Jon Peacock
MODERN MAN: Cooking enthusiast Jon Peacock enjoys experimenting in the kitchen, and says he does his fair share of the household chores as well.

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Cooking is the new hobby for the modern man - but washing the dishes afterwards is still a work in progress.

Victoria University associate professor Ian Yeoman has identified the new breed of "gastro craftsman" - men who are passionate, experimental and competitive when it comes to food, and who even use it for seduction.

In his book The Future of Food Tourism, due to be published this year, Yeoman cites research that one in six British women struggle to cook basic dishes, and 79 per cent find cooking as a hobby attractive in men.

"Men aged between 18 and 24 are having twice as much responsibility for food in the household as those aged 65 and over."

Women have traditionally held the domestic role in the house, but as they have returned to work and become more "professional", the household roles have become more shared, he says.

"Cooking for men is more of a hobby and enjoyed, while women tend to still see it as a chore.

"One thing that hasn't changed, though, is the domestic chores like cleaning and dishes, which women are still dominating."

NECESSITY THE MOTHER OF INVENTION

Husband and father-of-one Jon Peacock said he enjoyed experimenting in the kitchen - although learning how to cook came from the basic need to feed himself when he first moved out of home.

"I came from a traditional household where mum did the cooking but, as I got older, that shifted when dad and I both threw ourselves into the kitchen."

The Wellington public servant said having the luxury of time to experiment with food was "great fun".

The chore part was when something needed to be on the table at the end of the day, and it was just a case of "cooking something".

While he insisted he did his fair share of the household chores, he said his wife was also a good cook and baker who didn't give herself enough credit.

"She will say she takes care of the chores, but I'd like to say there's a balance. I'm often stuck on the end of a vacuum cleaner."

Cooking was a great way to impress friends and family, and do something nice for them, he said.

"It's been a long time since I've been dating, but I'm sure there's guys out there getting adventurous in the kitchen and using it to their advantage."

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- The Dominion Post

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