Okay, this is a bit of an usual topic, but since the topic came up, I might as well comment on it.
I think if I were to look for one thing that brings humanity together, it’s probably food. Everyone has to eat, and almost everyone likes to eat something. You see this in anime, too, where someone’s cooking skills are often for laughs or used as a display of skill. Let’s not get into things like Hiei or Isokaze’s cooking.
So, naturally, the question becomes: who’s the best cook? Or, “who’s good at cooking?”
This is a bit of a long answer, so bear with me for a bit.
I tend to go a slightly different route, however. In the same way that there is a general level of maturity in all of Pacific’s shipgirls, you can assume a general level of competency or at least familiarity with common household items and cookware. I mean, shipgirls are shipgirls – they aren’t exactly in danger of starving themselves – and even the laziest would probably know how to open cans or operate a microwave or “stick thing in fire to make it cooked.”
MREs and ramen noodles are pretty easy, too.
That being said, here is what you can expect. Again, most shipgirls will tend to show up with at least 1930s-1950s knowledge of cooking appliances and techniques. Remember that the world was still very keen on educating young women things like homemaking and cooking at the time, so some of that probably contributes to the “working” knowledge that shipgirls show up to the world with.
In other words, they’d be at home with something like this.
An image taken by Zero as he visits one of America’s many history museums. You can see that even in this 50s styled kitchen, there are already many appliances that are recognizable even to us today. Importantly, things such as fridges, toasters, blenders (I think I see a juicer too) and even modern-styled ranges are all already there.
So, what I’m saying is that you can expect the average shipgirl to know how to fry some bacon and use the grease to make omelettes, or to create a cold-cut platter and luncheon salads, or to dress a roast and make something hearty for dinner.
I mean, sure, when you get to the higher end of things you have girls like Surcouf whose cooking is elegance personified (and very French) or Langley (nobody beats mom’s apple pie!), but I tend to think of cooking as both a matter of experience and skill.
In other words, given a proper recipe, I think only the most harebrained shipgirls (looking at you Chester) would have trouble following a plan from start to finish. In addition, how good someone is at cook is going to depend on whether or not she likes to cook, likes to eat, enjoys being creative, and how much time she actually spends on the matter. Someone like Cal might be surprisingly capable, but she’d hardly be in the kitchen in contrast to someone who likes to cook her own food every day (e.g. iowa sisters, Tennsy). As a whole almost all of the subgirls are scary good at actually cooking (but that’s a nod to history as well), but someone like Narwhal might be way, way, way better at using coconuts than anyone else in her class.
I guess, like always, the answer is that “it depends.” Some day I’ll probably post a bit of a blurb about the general spread of tasters versus eaters versus cooks inside STEC, but for now, I think it’s time to call it a night. We’ve been really, really busy these days with the entire team moving about to catch our own internal deadlines.
So, I’ll talk to you later. 🙂