Thursday, December 15, 2016

Designing The Food We Eat

THE LAST SUPPER by Leonardo DaVinci
You have to consider that the food we eat, each and every day,  often three times a day is something that we design. Each time you prepare a meal, you are in effect designing something. From the mundane bowl of soup to a Thanksgiving feast, food has fascinated man ... and some of the most famous paintings in the world reflect that! Anyone who ever seen THE LAST SUPPER knows that food was as important to the disciples as to anyone. The feelings of breaking bread together are timeless and eternal.
     As I was making bread today, from scratch I might add, it hit me that cooking or baking, is as much an art as painting, writing or singing a song. Food is our sustenance and we ignore it to our peril. Every era, every time in history
They really knew how to eat in the Renaissance!
celebrates food yet many of us seem to ignore that fact. Even fast food, believe it or not, is designed in some kitchen somewhere and then copied like a Xerox copy all over the world. (I might add that in most cases there might be very little difference between the taste of some fast food and that copy of paper). Anyone who has traveled much knows that food is the subject of much of the fine art they see in the worlds greats museums, temples and monuments. Amazingly paintings on the walls of Ancient Egyptian temples still show people offering food to the gods. (Why is it that that paint is still there 4,500 years later and we have to paint our houses at least every 5 years?)
     Even in the midst of the turmoil of moving I had "ripe" bananas ready to be baked and a can of pumpkin puree begging to be cooked. Cook or move that can ... you decide.
Ingredients are out - let the mixing begin!
     As I write this the two - banana and pumpkin breads are baking. As I was mixing the ingredients it made me realize the steps are really no different than getting a painting ready to paint something and then well, paint it.
Banana batter ready to bake
I dug out the trusty cookbook and started pulling the out the ingredients off the shelves and refrigerator. Here, sugar and flour are kept in the freezer because the ants will be all over them before you can even say bug! So the flour, eggs, sugar, spices, oil, mashed bananas and the final addition - chopped walnuts are put together into a mix that hopefully will turn out to be bread. And trust me, anyone that has cooked or painted hopes for success. It doesn't always happen either!!! If you've been there you know what I mean.
The kitchen supervisor
      No kitchen would be complete without a supervisor and my kitchen isn't any different either. There in the middle of the floor, blocking an exit or entrance to the fridge is my supervisor. I guess I could move her but she would be back the minute my back was turned. She is however, a wonderful cleanup crew. You drop it, she'll eat it!
Pumpkin and banana bread, all ready to go!

     After mixing the batter for the banana bread, next came the pumpkin mix. I had never made this before and was amazed at how different the recipes were. They both were to be cooked in the same size pan, same time and even same temperature. Neither is dietetic but really how often do we splurge like this? My friend from Hong Kong loves my bread and specifically asked that I make some for him. Who knows, we might just be able to eat it in my own new kitchen!

The finished product: pumpkin and banana bread!
     The new counters won't be in but as the guy who came to take the final measurements Monday said, get a plastic tablecloth at the Dollar Store to cover the underlaying plywood. Yes, how perceptive is that! For a buck or two I can have the use of the kitchen as the appliances are in, the cabinets should be ... all that is missing will be the new counters. So, as I make my final hurrah in one kitchen, I am looking for to getting to use my new and very
     Here's to all the cooks, those artists of the culinary arts, wishing you much success with the cooking that mark the holidays.

Thank you for reading my blog. Please, take the time to read earlier blogs where the emphasis here and always is to explore the ways design and art affects our lives ... and always has. 

No comments:

Post a Comment