Author Topic: Come over for dinner and take over the cooking!  (Read 4818 times)

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sparksals

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Come over for dinner and take over the cooking!
« on: March 30, 2007, 06:53:26 PM »
We had some friends over for a BBQ last Sunday afternoon.  The menu was burgers, spicy sausage, salad, home made baked beans and a mixed fruit pie.  Appetizers were shrimp, cocktail sauce and home made guacamole.

Dh fired up the BBQ, we waited for it to heat up and I put the burgers and sausage on to cook.  I was a bit put off when one of my guests got up and did the cooking.  I'm sure she was trying to help, but when I have guests over, I prefer to do the cooking or dh do the grilling. 

Was she rude or am I over reacting?


Lisbeth

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Re: Come over for dinner and take over the cooking!
« Reply #1 on: March 30, 2007, 07:51:55 PM »
I think it was not appropriate for your guest to assume that she could do the cooking in your home without asking you first.  As the hostess, you needed to give permission, and you hadn't done so.  If I am hosting, I would not like it if my guests simply cooked unless I told them explicitly that it was fine with me.
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sparksals

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Re: Come over for dinner and take over the cooking!
« Reply #2 on: March 31, 2007, 01:34:38 AM »
Good.  I thought maybe I was overthinking it.  I just found it so odd that she just got up and basically took over the BBQ.  It made me feel like she didn't trust my ability to cook the burgers and sausage properly.

VelvetMorning

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Re: Come over for dinner and take over the cooking!
« Reply #3 on: March 31, 2007, 03:40:01 PM »
Gah--I'm on the other side of that situation.  I'm a classically-trained chef and I still enjoy taking regular courses through a local chef school.  The number of times I've been invited to dinner as a guest, and wound up stuck in the kitchen all night are legion.  It ALWAYS starts with "Velvet, could I get your advice here?"--Inevitably,  the hostess has chosen an incredibly difficult menu, often, I suspect, to impress. 

I don't eat at other people's homes that much anymore--just my close friends who know I'm happy with stew or pizza!  8)

sparksals

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Re: Come over for dinner and take over the cooking!
« Reply #4 on: March 31, 2007, 03:48:56 PM »
I think it's very rude to expect a guest to come over to help cook the dinner!  That's taking advantage of your expertise!

audrey1962

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Re: Come over for dinner and take over the cooking!
« Reply #5 on: March 31, 2007, 03:53:01 PM »
I have relatives who do this and I think it is very rude, so much so that I have stopped inviting them over.

Jaywalker

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Re: Come over for dinner and take over the cooking!
« Reply #6 on: March 31, 2007, 04:33:50 PM »
flipping burgers on a grill etc is unpleasant smoky generally icky work -- I would assume that the guest assumed she was helping with an unpleasant task -- just as a guest would help clear the table, or clean up in the kitchen -- and that she was doing this to give you a break

if you don't like it -- and certainly your prerogative -- you could certainly jump in and say 'Oh I like to handle that' or whatever but I would not frame is as 'rude' or 'taking over the cooking'

if she did the same thing in your kitchen with an elaborate dish without your permission or request, that would feel a bit different

sparksals

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Re: Come over for dinner and take over the cooking!
« Reply #7 on: April 01, 2007, 12:38:02 AM »
Jaywalker,

I had the BBQ on low and just put the burgers and sausage on, closed the lid to allow them to cook and sat down to further socialize.  That is when she got up, opened the lid and started fiddling with everything. 

I can see your point, but at the same time, regardless of the method of cooking, I felt she took over and it came across that I wasn't capable of bbq'g properly. 

Kiwichick

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Re: Come over for dinner and take over the cooking!
« Reply #8 on: April 01, 2007, 05:48:17 AM »
Jaywalker,

I had the BBQ on low and just put the burgers and sausage on, closed the lid to allow them to cook and sat down to further socialize.  That is when she got up, opened the lid and started fiddling with everything. 

I can see your point, but at the same time, regardless of the method of cooking, I felt she took over and it came across that I wasn't capable of bbq'g properly

I suspect the other guests probably didn't even notice, I wouldn't have thought that you weren't capable of cooking just because someone else took it upon themselves to cook.  It says much more about her than you.

Twik

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Re: Come over for dinner and take over the cooking!
« Reply #9 on: April 01, 2007, 08:46:36 AM »
I had the BBQ on low and just put the burgers and sausage on, closed the lid to allow them to cook and sat down to further socialize.  That is when she got up, opened the lid and started fiddling with everything. 

I can see your point, but at the same time, regardless of the method of cooking, I felt she took over and it came across that I wasn't capable of bbq'g properly. 

That would annoy me, as well.

Perhaps you could say, "Please, Guest, I've set everything just so, and if you open the lid/move the food/flip it too soon, you'll throw my calculations off. Now come sit down and chat for a while!"
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Re: Come over for dinner and take over the cooking!
« Reply #10 on: April 01, 2007, 12:23:19 PM »
If I had a guest take over the cooking without being asked it would be rude and I would rightly feel insulted because they have told me through their actions that I am not capable of cooking their meal.

It would be equally rude for to invite a guest over for dinner and expect them to cook the meal because that is saying that I only wanted them over to be my chef and not a guest.

It would be a situation different if it was discussed in advanced about having a friend cook while I provided everything for them to do so.

Jaywalker

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Re: Come over for dinner and take over the cooking!
« Reply #11 on: April 01, 2007, 12:27:35 PM »
If I had a guest take over the cooking without being asked it would be rude and I would rightly feel insulted because they have told me through their actions that I am not capable of cooking their meal.

----

but why choose to be 'insulted' instead of just assuming they were trying to be helpful AND then communicating to them that you preferred that they leave it to you

the OP had a way of doing her burgers that she preferred -- fair enough -- the guest might well have thought she was being a good guest by 'helping' with what is generally a hot smoky unpleasant task i.e. flipping burgers --- guest is wrong here -- but not necessarily trying to insult anyone

the world would be a better place if insult were not our first response to slight differences in perceptions of appropriate behavior

(of course the guest could have been a control freak who is trying to suggest the OP is a bad cook -- buy one would want to have a bit more data to conclude that)

jais

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Re: Come over for dinner and take over the cooking!
« Reply #12 on: April 01, 2007, 12:30:35 PM »

but why choose to be 'insulted' instead of just assuming they were trying to be helpful AND then communicating to them that you preferred that they leave it to you


I completely agree.  Why would you automatically assume that your friend was insulting you?

Sophia

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Re: Come over for dinner and take over the cooking!
« Reply #13 on: April 01, 2007, 12:32:07 PM »
I would have been annoyed too.  Especially since your way, i.e. leaving the meat to cook under a closed lid, is better than her way of fiddling with it and letting the heat escape.  I would figure her to be a control freak before I would feel insulted though. 

sparksals

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Re: Come over for dinner and take over the cooking!
« Reply #14 on: April 01, 2007, 02:44:32 PM »
If I had a guest take over the cooking without being asked it would be rude and I would rightly feel insulted because they have told me through their actions that I am not capable of cooking their meal.

----

but why choose to be 'insulted' instead of just assuming they were trying to be helpful AND then communicating to them that you preferred that they leave it to you

the OP had a way of doing her burgers that she preferred -- fair enough -- the guest might well have thought she was being a good guest by 'helping' with what is generally a hot smoky unpleasant task i.e. flipping burgers --- guest is wrong here -- but not necessarily trying to insult anyone

the world would be a better place if insult were not our first response to slight differences in perceptions of appropriate behavior

(of course the guest could have been a control freak who is trying to suggest the OP is a bad cook -- buy one would want to have a bit more data to conclude that)

Ok, I see your point.  I do think that she meant well and was not trying to insult me.  I just thought it odd that as soon as I put the stuff on the BBQ, she got up.  Perhaps she prefers to watch the stuff on the BBQ for the entire time it's on.  I don't.  I BBQ enough to know how long things take.  I do understand your point to take the assistance in the spirit it was intended and that was to be helpful.