Monday, April 17, 2006

Food as Opportunity

“In societies torn by war, food is often the one chance people have to make anything in their day remarkable.” The journalist Scott Simon wrote that line in “Conflict Cuisine”, from the April 2006 issue of Gourmet. In the article he recounts some of the memorable meals he experienced while covering wars in Eritrea, Bosnia, and Kosovo. His observation struck me hard. While the difference between the hell of war and the “hell” of jobs, commuting, and day-to-day life are worlds apart, I believe that food gives people from all walks of life the opportunity to have something special in their day. Instead of microwaving a frozen dinner, a stay-at-home mother gently rests a poached egg over steamed asparagus for her lunch. Forgoing the usual supper of popcorn the retired couple spends 20 minutes in the kitchen making tangy tacos. Preparing delicious, memorable food doesn’t have to difficult, time-consuming, or out of reach. It is a simple pleasure, one that can make anyone’s day remarkable.

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