Thursday, March 25, 2010


Back in high school, I took the Myers-Briggs test at school as part of preparing for college or deciding what I should do with my life, or something like that. But considering I had known since I was 11 that I wanted to be a journalist and already knew my top school, I paid very little attention to my results and couldn’t tell you what I was then.

But I’ve made some friends in my town that love Myers-Briggs, and at almost every social gathering, the conversation ultimately turns to personality types. After listening on the sideline several times, I decided I was going to have to retake the test and figure out what I am. I can now say that I am an INFP (although borderline P/J). In English, that’s introvert (I), intuitive (N), feeling (F) and perceiving (P).

As I’ve spent more time talking about it with friends and reading about my personality type on my own, I’ve learned a lot more about the way I think, why I do things a certain way and why I clash with certain personalities.

As an INFP, I am an idealist. I am sensitive to others, tend to make decisions based on what I know intuitively and not logic, and need time alone to recharge. I can be a perfectionist in some ways because I get an idea in my head and that’s what I have to do.

I figured my personality type also expressed itself in the kitchen, and I found this “Recipe for Pumpkin Soup” that describes how the different personality types cook.

I am somewhere between intuitive and feeling on this scale. I do like to start with a recipe, but I start making it up when I don’t have what I need or decide I don’t like something that is called for. I do usually multitask in the kitchen, and if what I’m making involves other people, what they like and how they feel about food definitely impacts my decisions.

I like to please people, so all of the things that I make are tried and true recipes that I know everyone will eat. A New York Times article categorizes cooking personalities a little differently. In this one, I clearly fall into the “giving” category:
  • Giving: Friendly, well-liked and enthusiastic, giving cooks seldom experiment, love baking and like to serve tried-and-true family favorites, although that sometimes means serving less healthful foods.
I think this pretty sums up my cooking philosophy. I like to cook when it involves other people, and I stick to the things I know how to make and know people will like. But that doesn’t really help me with this project. What I need to be is this one:
  • Healthy: Optimistic, book-loving, nature enthusiasts, healthy cooks experiment with fish, fresh produce and herbs. Health comes first, even if it means sometimes sacrificing taste.
So what’s your cooking personality? Or Myers-Briggs?


  1. Maybe this is an NF thing. I have some very similar ways of "giving." I also joined H&B and last year challenged myself to cook more often in order to experiment and create and enjoy. I knew that I didn't take effort or joy from cooking for myself so I threw a number of dinner parties or had individuals over. H&B also was great for forcing me to use things I may not normally buy and eat healthy, in-season, local goods. Unfortunately, I hibernated a bit in the Winter when H&B has not been a source of plenty, but my body and soul have been yearning for me to get back to these foods and this challenge. So I'm going to join you and anticipate lots of food pictures and comments this season!

    And I'm glad you've joined the blogosphere.

  2. You know I am thrilled to death that you just blogged about Myers-Briggs. :) And cooking for one - I definitely need tips and encouragement! So hooray for Lizzie's blog! Looking forward to reading your posts.