If you were to scroll through the tens of thousands of comments that have been posted to The Kitchn over the years, you'd notice a little term pop up every once in a while. It shows up in discussions about kitchen setups and tools; it appears on comment threads for kitchen tours and cooking technique tutorials. It's not outwardly offensive or shocking, so people throw it around a lot: "real cook."
After years of seeing people, places, products, and ideas dismissed for not being in the province of a "real" cook, I'm here to tell you that there's no such thing. There are real housewives, real estate, and Real Simple, but "real" cooks? Nope.