What Are All the Men Doing on These Cookbook Covers?

What Are All the Men Doing on These Cookbook Covers?

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Jelisa Castrodale
Jan 24, 2018
(Image credit: Alexis Buryk)

According to scientists, every 18 seconds, somewhere in the world, someone is leaning over to a semi-stranger and stage-whispering "You know, you can make yogurt in your Instant Pot."

It seems like we're all in agreement that the Instant Pot does everything. It can make tender, juicy roasts; it can make perfectly poached eggs; and, if it had been asked, it would probably have found a way to avoid last weekend's government shutdown. The only thing it can't seem to do is make a couple look natural — or even comfortable — when they're cooking together.

A writer named Mike Rugnetta noticed that the covers of a number of Instant Pot cookbooks are problematic because, in a ridiculous number of them, a woman is forced to try to chop vegetables while her male partner is inexplicably draped over her shoulders like a cape.

"These poor women," he tweeted, along with three Instant Pot cookbook covers that show women somehow tolerating a dude's hand over hers while she tries to cut a vegetable. He quickly followed up with four more examples, wondering "WHY ARE THERE SO MANY OF THESE?"

We have a lot of questions about whoever staged these photos, including whether or not they've actually seen someone chop vegetables before. (Or if they've ever seen a woman).

We're also curious about the kind of recipes that are behind these covers: If it's thought that women can't cut vegetables without literal hands-on supervision, then how can they be trusted to actually get the ingredients into the pot? (Step one: Allow him to guide your hands while you slice a tomato. Step two: Either nod encouragingly as he lowers the tomato into the Instant Pot, or call for help).

Although this is one of the most demoralizing cookbook covers we've seen lately, it's not the saddest. As one guy pointed out on Twitter, that designation clearly belongs to Sandra Allison, photographed casually leaning onto her favorite kitchen appliance in "Microwave for One."

If those other cookbooks are any indication, cooking for one is the way to go.

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