Friday, July 6, 2012

The love of food

Gluttony is an ugly word. It even sounds heavy; clunky and stunted on the tongue. And, sloth aside, it's cousins--wrath, lust, avarice, envy, and pride--are decidedly more glamorous. They offer far more romantic options to aid in a tumbling from grace.

And yet. Is there much that is more pleasurable than a truly delicious meal? The kind that has you savouring every bite as long as possible, holding it in your mouth to make the flavour last. The kind that compels you to shut your eyes and groan. The kind that has you scraping up every last morsel long after you're sated. 

Well. It would seem that gluttony and lust have a tag team on human pleasure. We've even gone so far as to label particularly spectacular pictures of food as "food porn". We, as a species, love food.

Somehow, though, maybe because of gluttony's position as a deadly sin, maybe because the word "pleasure" is so often paired with the word "guilty", we've come to feel, well, guilt-ridden when we eat good food. We've bought into the false notion that healthy food can't be delicious food, that if we're enjoying it there must be something inherently wrong about it.

To be fair, I think that is well on it's way to changing. We're becoming more knowledgeable about what we eat and what makes it taste good. We no longer rely solely on salt as a flavour additive, we're developing a sound wariness of excess sugar, and I know an impressive number of people who fall to pieces over their love of certain vegetables. So we're getting there. 

And let's be honest, we're never going to stop loving food. This is a good thing. If we love food we're more open to trying new things, more willing to search out the next spectacular flavour, more excited when we find that dish that is both mouthwatering and genuinely healthful. 

Speaking of excited, while perusing Orangette today (the blog that inspired me to start this one), I stumbled across Sprouted Kitchen. This food blog is dedicated to better tasting wholesome food. And oh is it gorgeous. The photography is nothing short of stunning, making me lament my lack of a better camera. Canon PowerShot, you're not cutting it. 

Sometimes that many photographs is a mark of inferior content, but in this case it isn't. Sara Forte writes with a casual elegance that is at once entertaining and accessible. The recipe instructions are clear and she offers them up as one method of doing things rather than as hard and fast rules. 

Since I only just discovered this wonderful source of whole food recipes, I haven't had a chance to try any of them yet. These lemon pancakes might be where I dive in. They look incredible, and they're gluten-free. Even though I can eat gluten 'til the cows come home without adverse effects, I know a few people that can't, so I'm always excited when I come across a gluten-free recipe that looks promising. 

My point here, if there is one, is don't feel bad about eating. Food should be enjoyable, pleasure without it's guilty associate. And if you want to treat yourself to a slice of chocolate cake or a box of donuts, find someone to share it with. Spread the love and cut the calories in half. And maybe don't eat the entire box in one sitting.

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