By the content of this blog, I should think it's fairly obvious that I love to cook and I love to eat, but my relationship with food runs deeper than that. Food is the ever-present love of my life and the anchor against which all my memories are tethered. Trying to conjure a memory that doesn't involve food is somewhat of a challenge and it’s this that brings meaning to my relationship with food.
Yes, food is fuel in a physical sense, but it's also the life blood behind relationships and emotions. Why else do you think that chicken soup is the remedy for all ills - from flu to break-ups - in more than one country/culture/religion and why does a sandwich always taste better when someone makes it for you. Spaghetti and meatballs can never just be spaghetti and meatballs once you’ve happily twirled it around your fork, slurping away in homage to Lady and the Tramp; lobster won’t continue to be just another fancy dinner once you’ve cracked it open with your hands and shovelled it into your mouth, dripping with butter, overlooking the Atlantic ocean; no matter that you made countless lemon drizzle cakes working every weekend in a cafe for two years when it also happens to be the cake that puts a certain twinkle in your dad’s eye. Perhaps I’m over-romanticising, but when I think about how I love food, why I love food, it’s never because it simply tastes delicious. For me, any dish that is truly delicious - whether it’s a special birthday meal or just another Thursday night at home - becomes a memory in itself and that is why it means so much to me.
I think I could write this blog post forever so every now and then, as a sort-of series, I want to start sharing recipes and dishes that have a hold on my life, for some reason or another. And, if you like that sort of thing, please make sure you read the books in this reading list round-up; they’re all favourites I read again and again, whether I'm happy or sad, to feel a twinge of nostalgia for someone else's food memories.