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Last Updated: Thursday, 27 October 2005, 13:52 GMT 14:52 UK
Are women poor cooks?
Gordon Ramsay
Are women more likely to be able to mix a cocktail than cook a meal?

Celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay has claimed that women "can't cook to save their lives" while more men are learning what to do in the kitchen.

Mr Ramsay also said that female cooks tended to cheat with ready and pre-prepared meals.

Do you agree with Gordon Ramsay's comments?

This debate is now closed. Read a selection of your comments below.


The following comment reflect the balance of views received:

I think there could well be many more famous male chefs around the world than there are female, just as there are famous music composers, orchestra conductors and artists, but that is not to say women can't cook, write music, and conduct orchestras or paint. It's just that there's fewer of them around quantitatively, but not necessarily qualitatively.
Richard, Dubai, UAE

Men cook for applause and recognition of their specialised hobby
Anela, USA
Absolute twaddle! Generally speaking, men cook for applause and recognition of their specialised hobby, whereas women cook because historically it has been their role. I don't see any women getting the "amazing, you can cook" routine at a dinner party like many men do. I'll bet a survey would show a 50/50 split. This male/female thing is absurd.
Anela, USA

When you look at the top chefs, the majority are male. I think men have more of a creative edge for it. I am passionate about cooking, and love spending quality time in the kitchen. I haven't eaten convenience food for years. I laugh when I hear people saying they don't have the time to cook fresh dishes, when most convenience food takes around 45 minutes in the oven. I love cooking for my wife, whether she loves eating it is another matter!
James Munro, UK

Women need to be able to cook. They are after all the person that mainly looks after children and feeds them (or at least used to be). It's that or they should get out there and earn enough money that the men can stay at home and cook properly for them! I think it called equality. Spot on Ramsey!
Paul, UK

Anybody can cook regardless of their sex, provided they are interested in food and have time to learn to cook. I don't understand why Gordon Ramsey felt it necessary to make this a battle of the sexes. I enjoy watching Ramsey's kitchen nightmares because he puts so much passion into food. I am happy for all those men and women who feel like that about their work whether it involves food or not!
Sally, England

Who really cares? So long as one person in the relationship can cook, the other gets all the lovely jobs (!) like ironing, floor scrubbing, baby changing, etc... Fair's fair! Truthfully though, share the jobs and it will take less time.
Adrian, UK

Perhaps Gordon should comment on the quality of historical English cuisine! There seems to be a rule stating that if you can't boil or fry it, it is impossible to cook on the island.
Nick, Canada

They use to say food is the way to a man's heart. Well I think its round the other way. Cook for a lady and nice wine - something choc for pudding, worked for me
Chris , Kent, UK

Ridiculous! I'm one of the best cooks I know! With absolutely no training or qualifications! The only time I can't cook is when I'm using ready made meals! I just wish I had more time and money to cook exactly what I want, everytime I want to make it.
Hazel, UK

To be honest, my other half finds cooking relaxing so my view is, if he wants to do it, he can because I have to clean the house and wash his socks! Having said that am occasional cook, mostly at weekends though
Helen Castree, England

Oh Gordon, get off your high horse and get back to the kitchen where you belong!
Jakki Higginbottom, UK

I think he's right, if the survey questioned my generation, i.e., anyone younger than 35 I wouldn't be surprised at the findings. More women are taking career jobs and the "traditional" roles they had, homemaker, wife/mother etc are being sacrificed somewhat. Also today's culture is all about quick and easy and perhaps the majority of the new cooking programs are aimed at men in respect of picking up cooking hints and women for the eye candy of Jamie Oliver, James Martin et al.
Adam, England

I occasionally buy ready meals, but more often than not, I cook meals from scratch and freeze some for my own "ready meals". You can control what ingredients you use and, more to the point, home-made food always tastes SO much better!
Emily, England

When a woman says she can't cook, it means she can't prepare a five star meal. If a man says he can't cook, it means he can't microwave baked beans.
Tracey, UK

I'm quite good in the kitchen but if Gordon thinks a man can do better, please send one over to me. Make sure he irons and cleans too.
Arlington, VA, USA

Hurrah!! One in the the eye for the men, how canny are we, of course we CAN cook it's just that we choose not to, guess it's just like the guys who choose not to clean the house, mow the lawns, iron the clothes and wash the kids...I'm sure they probably could but know their partner will most likely do it if it's left. This is what I call progress!
Lisa Ellis, UK

I don't think it's necessarily women that can't cook, young adults just do not get set a proper example at home any more. People claim they don't have time to cook a proper meal, but that is pure laziness. I work full time, have two children, and cook a full meal from fresh ingredients every single day of the week. Some children don't even want to eat anything else but processed food (see Jamie's school dinners, I was absulutely horrified when I saw that). Parents shouldn't give in to that and give their children the right and healthy example.
Ymke Huijbregts-Kegels, UK

Many women don't have the time to cook like they once did and if the man enjoys cooking and this is one chore he is prepared to do then why not let him especially if he's good at it. My husband likes to cook but he never cleans and never cleans up after dinner.
Vicki Gregory, Mississauga, Ontario

Heh, without my mother I would be living on a diet of microwaveable curries and pizzas. But instead I get a nice home cooked meal everyday and every Sunday a roast dinner that's second to none.
Adrian Woods, Tamworth, Staffordshire

One less job for a woman to do
F.Williamson, Teesside, UK
Who cares, if Gordon Ramsey, thinks a man is a better cook than a woman, or any man for that matter, I think it is wonderful. One less job for a woman to do. I wish I had learned that lesson 40 years ago. Ho Ho Ho! My daughter can't cook, but her husband can, and she loves it.
F.Williamson, Teesside, UK

What a sexist egotistical comment, I'm male and can't cook or mix a cocktail to save my life on the other hand my best friend (a female) is an excellent professional chef
Carlos, San Francisco, Ca

Oh please! Get a grip Gordon! Most men can't cook at all and if they do it amounts to throwing a slab of meat on the grill. In our house, I make the marinade and season blends for the meat. My husband throws it on the grill and gets all the credit!
Sherry, Dacula, USA

It may well be the case that more men are learning what to do in the kitchen. However the whole issue seems to me to be a way of getting publicity for his TV show.
Keith Gee, Derby, UK

Most of the women I know are excellent chefs
Alex, Brighton, UK
Absolutely untrue. Anyone with a passion for food, and a good source of ingredients can be a good cook. Most of the women I know are excellent chefs. I don't think this is a gender issue anymore in this day and age.
Alex, Brighton, UK

Personal experience: yes. My little unscientific survey is at the supermarket beginning of college terms. The girls' trolleys are brimming with Lean Cuisine frozen food packets. The boys' with staples of guy skillet cooking: burger, chops and tinned veg. But it's still more "cooking" than most girls can do. At least American ones. That's why I married an Englishwoman who can cook the pants off Gordon Ramsay. And without the swearing, too.
Peter C. Kohler, Washington DC, USA

A lot of blokes are good at making a really special meal. When they set their mind to it, they do a special shopping trip, spend a lot of time preparing the ingredients, and despite creating carnage in the kitchen, cook up a real treat every so often.Women on the other hand, are generally much better at things like making sure there's something decent on the table every night, avoiding running out of milk, making sure they have the ingredients for the kids' lunches, cleaning up as they go along...and without telling everyone they deserve a George Cross for their efforts.
Rachel Toms, UK

I think Gordon Ramsey should put himself in a woman's shoes. Lets see him look after two children, while working a 35 hour week, prepare food on a budget and run a household! Maybe then he will rethink his obnoxious comments. Not everyone has the time or the money to spend on fancy meals. As for men taking up more cooking, I say its about time too.
Amy, England

As a woman, I'm not offended by Gordon's comments - he was just reporting on what he discovered during his research for his programme. I like the idea of men becoming more involved in the kitchen - why should it only be considered a woman's domain? Most of the celebrity chefs I know are men!
Julie, UK

Is that not a bit of a broad statement. My mother taught me to cook, and I also did cooking at school and would like to think I could cook anything given the ingredients. Perhaps Gordon Ramsey should think before he makes rash comments and tars all females with the same brush!
Julia, UK

As a single person working full time economically and also from a variety point of view, ready meals are a great price, and don't take long to cook. However, at weekends when I have friends round, I like nothing more than to cook a good 2 or 3 course meal with all fresh produce and ingredients having the time, energy and incentive to do so!
Sue, Essex, UK

I cannot wait to get home and tell my wife who has always been a big fan of his. Fireworks tonight!!
Patrick Carr, England

I think men who cook seriously are better cooks than women. They always have been, because they enjoy food more. Men do not have the guilt association with food like women do. They approach food as a pleasure well deserved, while women often have a love-hate relationship with food.
Janie, London, UK

Yes I agree with Gordon. I know lots of young women who can't cook or don't want to. Lots of families on low income complain about cost of food, yet you just have to look in people's supermarket trolleys to see the ready prepared meals. No wonder obesity levels are on the increase. I learned to cook at home as a youngster and likewise have taught my son the basics.
Rita, Northants England

They don't often have the time to cook fancy time-consuming meals
Ed, UK
So who cooked for him as a child? I bet it's his mum. Up and down the country there are mothers (who incidentally, I seem to have noticed, are all women) who cook 3 meals a day for their families. It's just that they don't often have the time to cook fancy time-consuming meals
Ed, UK

So what's wrong with that, let the men do the cooking if they enjoy it, gives us woman more time with our children. Both my husband and I enjoy cooking, it is great not to do it all the time though.
Sue, United Kingdom

I never buy ready meals or pre-prepared sauces.Mainly because they are full of chemicals, gluten, and who knows what else. I like to know what I am eating, so its organic veg boxes, fresh meats and herbs, not a packet or jar in sight!Even while at uni my friends and i lived on fresh produce, as pre packaged food is a waste of money, especially on a tight budget! So what a load of tosh!
Karen Billington, UK

Mr Ramsey has probably only met younger women who do not do the cooking. My husband and I share the cooking with either cooking for each other or both doing it together - it is called being equal. Mr Ramsey needs to get off his throne and take a look at people in the real world not in his world.
Mrs P. Wilkins, England

Now if you were saying that more men than women were doing the washing, ironing and cleaning, I think I would be far more impressed
Catherine, UK
Well, I can cook, and I do! But then, I don't have children to deal with, as well as a job, and maybe an elderly relative to care for. I feel that lifestyles have changed hugely in recent years, and that women, especially, feel under pressure to try and cope with everything. Get more men in the kitchen - it's one less thing for women to have to do! Now if you were saying that more men than women were doing the washing, ironing and cleaning, I think I would be far more impressed!!
Catherine, UK

Hey Gordon....maybe but more due to the fact that women are better multi-taskers. Whilst men are messing around weighing up the virtues of thyme versus tarragon, women have returned from work, done the supermarket shop, fed the kids and cleaned the house.. All in a day's work Gordon!
Pam Macdonald, The Netherlands

So what if women can't cook. They are too busy juggling careers and motherhood.
Fiona Dryden, United Kingdom

My mother-in-law couldn't cook. My wife used to claim that she couldn't cook based on never having learned from her mother. She'll still tell you she can't cook. She's now working in the catering trade (as an evening supervisory waitress) so I get to cook for the kids on Mondays to Thursdays. My wife has also learned to cook in the last few years, she's now doing the hard part of preparing meals for me to serve to the kids. (We're having fewer ready meals.)So Gordon may be right, but the non-cooking women are not beyond redemption.
Dougie Lawson, Basingstoke, UK

I can cook and enjoy cooking and every Saturday night for the past couple of years I have been trying new recipes, my husband loves this and much prefers it to going out for a meal. Some of these recipes I now cook during the week and would not dream of using ready meals or having takeaways. P.S. I do not own any Gordon Ramsay cookery books!
Jan, UK

There's no need to insult the women of the country that can cook
Helen, England
I admit I may use some ready meals but I can cook from fresh too. Only yesterday I cooked a full roast dinner followed by a home-made bread & butter pudding. Gordon Ramsey should keep his comments to himself as there's no need to insult the women of the country that can cook!
Helen, England

My Mother always used to do wonderful roasts, but since she's had a combination microwave and grill, the roasts are always either underdone or zapped out of existence. If you understand the technology behind a microwave, you are far more likely to use it effectively.
Jamie, UK




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