I don’t remember exactly when I started liking food, but it was probably sometime in college. Before that, I liked dessert. And as such, I liked baking. I made box-mix cake on a regular basis, and I was pretty good at it… my dog would even tell you so. But I really didn’t understand the appeal of food, and I especially didn’t understand how anyone could derive pleasure from cooking. Food seemed so temporary – you spend all this time preparing it, then it’s gone and you have a pile of dishes to wash. I ordered the same dish in the same handful of restaurants. In new restaurants, I scanned the menu, rejecting item after item for one or two ingredients that I didn’t like. Nothing could be worse than suffering through an unpredictable meal.
But then, I started to understand that food was universal. Everybody eats. And every culture has used food as a way to express itself. Food can create a sense of identity and bring people together around the table. It can also bring us closer to the earth. Food is sensual – the very act of eating can touch every sense we have. We see its colors and textures, smell its aromas, hear it sizzling or crunching or cracking, touch it with our hands, and taste it in our mouths. We cannot live without it. And I came to understand the satisfaction of giving this small but essential gift to others. There’s something very intimate about making food for another person, providing them a little more nourishment to get through life.
So I’m enjoying food these days. I’m experimenting and discovering that I like things I didn’t think I did or didn’t know before. And I love to write, so I’m writing about it here. I hope you will partake in this adventure with me, and share with me your discoveries.