There was a misconception about Sasuke that he never thought he would need to correct.
It was one of those things he always viewed as a luxury and never had time for or cared about. When one was always on the road living the life of a vagabond, cooking wasn’t a priority. The taste of food never mattered as long as he got sustenance. As perfect and talented as people believed he once was, there was one skill he had never picked up.
Uchiha Sasuke did not know how to cook.
When he was a genin and went out with Team Seven, he would give in and allow himself to enjoy the spicier foods he loved. He would take out portions of his pay and allowance and enjoy an outing for food.
But he couldn’t live on takeout and instant foods like his teammate Naruto. He would never stoop so low as to build his diet up of cups of ramen and milk. It was better to use his village allowance━and later on his mission pay━to buy his favorite fruit and ready made meals at the closest conbini.
It was the best place to stock up on onigiri, his go to snack or quick meal.
Although he didn’t know how to cook, he did know how to prepare onigiri. Always busy training, he only set time aside to make his own when he was in a particular mood. He found it therapeutic to mold the triangular shaped balls of rice.
Shaping the rice and making his favorite filling of okaka reminded him of his mother. She had been the one to teach him how to prepare rice balls when he was younger and Itachi had left him behind. He would wait until his mother’s back was turned and take rice into his little hands and try to make the biggest ball he could, which earned him a scolding from Mikoto.
The reminder of those scoldings would make him feel hollow when the only sounds coming from his kitchenette was the sound the rice made as he squished it with his fingers and the sound of his own breathing.
When he finally came back home one of the first things he learned to enjoy was cooking. Or at least he enjoyed cooking with Sakura.
Sakura didn’t cook often but she fared better than he did. It was amusing to watch her attempt to make anything because she was completely by the book, strict about following recipes to the tee as if she were following the instructions for one of her antidotes.
“What’s this?” He would ask holding up a foreign looking cooking utensil. He always stocked his kitchenette with the most basic of tools.
“A mandolin slicer. We can use it to julienne some vegetables for stir fry and other things.”
“And what’s that?” Sasuke would point out an odd looking fruit or vegetable,
“I don’t know but let’s find out!” Sakura’s eyes would gleam with excitement and she would toss the produce into their shopping basket.
Every day was a new experience in his tiny kitchen. Sakura would bring over a journal full of recipes her mother had compiled over the years and they would pick a new one to try.
“That’s a good look for you,” Sasuke mumbled one day, warmth creeping up his neck.
“It’s cute, huh?” Sakura winked flirtatiously as she tied her apron strings behind her back. “Ino found it and thought the pattern was so me of course.”
She pulled out everything she needed to make the dashi for their miso soup. It was the first thing they learned to make together and it was a staple at any meal they shared.
“You should blanch the tomatoes,” she suggested with a smile. The corners of Sasuke’s lips twitched upwards in amusement. She was always casually throwing in the cooking vocabulary she learned, happy to know what they meant. “We can toss them into the soup. Wouldn’t that be interesting?”
“You should stay here,” he said just as casually as she used her new words. “We could make miso soup everyday.”
For a moment the only sound was of the water of the two pots boiling until Sakura’s soft voice broke the silence.
“Yeah. We could do that.” She averted her gaze, cheeks blazing a vivid pink.
The kitchen was quiet again as they moved around, preparing their dinner. Sakura took a peek at what Sasuke was doing and she almost dropped the dashi she had made.
“What are you doing with those chillies!?”
“Won’t they be interesting in the soup?” He teased.
And as she tried to wrestle the peppers out of his hands and the kitchen was filled with warm pleasant sounds, Sasuke couldn’t help but feel as though this was a luxury he would gladly indulge in as often as possible. A luxury he could make all of the time in world for.