Help! I have a split personality!



A recent study conducted by Cornell University scrutinized 770 family cooks to discover that there are five distinct cooking personalities among home cooks:

1. “Giving” cooks (22%) are enthusiastic about cooking and specialize in comfort food, particularly home-baked goodies.
2. “Methodical” cooks (18%) rely heavily on recipes, so their cooking is strongly influenced by the cookbook they use.
3. “Competitive” cooks (13%) think less about health and more about making the most impressive dish possible.
4. “Healthy” cooks (20%) often serve fish and use fresh ingredients, but taste isn’t the primary goal.
5. “Innovative” cooks (19%) like to experiment with different ingredients, cooking methods and cuisines, which tends to lead to healthier cooking.

These profiles were developed to predict how the cooking style of each household’s primary home cook may affect the health of an entire family. The theory discussed in the article is that the primary home cook’s style influences around 70% of the foods we eat, not just when we eat meals at home but also children’s lunches, snacks eaten outside the home, and even what family members order at restaurants.

Can you identify yourself in any of these profiles? I can see myself as a ‘giving cook’ on some days but also as an ‘innovative cook’ on most days. Does this mean I have split culinary personality disorder?

15 Responses to Help! I have a split personality!

  1. Cheryl A says:

    I was going to say the exact same thing – Giving on a Monday and Innovative on a Sunday. But by Thursday it’s just plain Lazy.

  2. I am mainly Giving and Innovative, but fall into all categories except Methodical. At birthdays and special occasions, I fall squarely into the Competitive category.

    While I am a Healthy cook on principle, I will not do so at the expense of taste. I guess that’s where the Innovative kicks in.

    Interesting survey! Thanks for pointing it out.

  3. Dharm says:

    Haha! Love this post! It means I’ve a schizo too as I think I”m all 5 thrown into 1!!! Great post Dana.

  4. Dharm says:

    Eekk.. typo! Should read I’m a Schizo too, or is Schizophrenia completely different from Multiple Personalities…?? Hmm… from a typo to questioning my own thoughts… classic psychosis perhaps? LOL!

  5. danamccauley says:

    Dharm – I get what you’re saying and that’s all that counts for me!

  6. Barb says:

    I am a definite maybe, too. I’m not competetive at all but I can see myself in all the other categories.

  7. Diva says:

    Fascinating post, Dana. I’d say I’m a 50 – 50 split between Giving and Innovative. Though probably I’d have substituted the word “Intuitive” for “Innovative.” I rely quite a bit on my instincts when cooking. And though I like to make healthy food, I would not assign myself that category because tastes is of serious import to me. Looks like were all a bit Schizo. Whee!

  8. As is usual when newspapers report scientific papers, a lot has been let out. But since they don’t identify the paper(s) the research comes from, we are left only with the reporter’s summary and possible misinterpretation. (Anyone who has given a 30-minute interview only to see 5 or 6 out-of-context lines show up in print, knows what I mean.) In this case, what happened to the other 8% not described? Except for “competitive” cooks, the breakdown seems very even—is there any statistical difference? How were the 770 families analyzed? By questionnaire, or by observation? Inquiring minds want to know.

  9. cheryl says:

    Hmm, categories like this bug me! I’d be hard pressed to imagine that anyone calls neatly into just one, you know? Why can’t healthy cooks using seasonal ingredients also value flavor? Seems specious to me!

  10. Natashya says:

    I’d say that I am giving with a side of innovative.
    When I clicked on split personality for your post though, I was expecting a banana split! Now I really want a banana split…

  11. Rosa says:

    I can’t identify to only one profile… Just like you, I have a split personality ;-P! It seems I have 5 different personalities….



  12. Sampada says:

    Well, i’m not fixed to one profile….i have 5 different personalities….but most of the time i’m innovative.

  13. That’s really interesting. I think we trend more toward giving. What personality does “take-out” fall under?

  14. Heather says:

    I think that it depends on the day, and my mood which personality I fall under…and I think that I’ve qualified for all of them numerous times.

  15. Amy says:

    I fall bw the innovative and the giving….

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