Does it cook for me? Or does it cook for itself? Who can really say? It’s just a machine. It will trundle through a set of instructions, but does it feel anything when it gets to the end of the code? And if it doesn’t, isn’t that probably for the best? The oft-fictionalised scenario is about a machine intelligence refusing to do something, but imagine the a more apathetic scene. “Nah,” says the Cook4Me. “I cooked for you yesterday.”
Ah, kind of reminds me of Microsoft Windows 95. Doesn’t it? (For our younger readers, 95 had many of the same problems as Windows 8.1, but without the routine where Windows attempts to find a solution to your problem, then freezes, then reports that it hasn’t. Ridiculous.)
Anyway, the Cook4Me is neither besmirched with Turing-level intelligence nor running Windows 95. It is a cooking, browning, boiling and steaming one-pot wonder and it’s pre-loaded with 50 sweet and savoury dishes, all of which contain a maximum of six ingredients. You just choose your dish, follow the on-screen instructions regarding the what-and-when of the ingredients and within minutes tuck into a tasty tagliatelle or perfect paella.
I think I can manage a pasta dish without a robo-cook. But not everyone enjoys the idyllic, time-saturated geek existence that you’ve fashioned for yourself. For a busy family, this thing that can knock up a tasty dinner for many – that can keep dishes warm for up to 90 minutes or be delay-started automagically up to 15 hours in advance – might be just the thing.
Just like the Tefal ActiFry before it, there’s a growing community of people sharing recipes to do in the Cook4Me, and that means it’ll stay fresh even after the taste of the £250 (S$508) spend at exclusive retailer Lakeland has long faded.
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