The Secret Ingredient: Homosexuality in traditional kitchen culture
The way we learn the recipe to gender roles is embedded in the labor that we see being performed in the kitchen. Over time, gender roles in the kitchen have transformed into recipes found in cookbooks on how to be a domestic by baking a good pie. The focus of this essay is to look at the journey of the recipe of gender roles and see it transform and reproduce through the different media. The maintenance of gender roles still holds today in different forms, however like recipes, they do get altered, and modified and secret ingredients get added along the way. Sexuality in this case is the secret ingredient that modifies the traditional gender roles recipe. It was an interesting find that through recipes, and the reproduction of domesticity through cooking and kitchen culture also created a particular identification to who ate what, who cooked and what those roles represented in identifying gender. There is a certain cooking men do to protect their masculinity and a routine cooking that women do to maintain the balance of a household and also define her femininity. The performance of these two roles is maintained by traditional kitchen culture and its values. However, as we see in the examples provided, there is a new blur of the binary gender line. As a devious “act” homosexuality is beginning to put into perspective these roles that are so black and white if you will. Sharing the domestic labor, or creating a different way for reproducing these traditional gender roles is what the underlying question of research was trying to answer. Of course this needs more extensive research with families that share the ways that they approach cooking or gender performance in the kitchen, this would require some qualitative research. However, over the centuries and the technological advances, we see that there is a visible space for homosexuality in these current food blogs and TV shows, but how will they reproduce the gender roles if they have to at all?