My husband and I were having this discussion a few nights ago – we eat to live, right? We don’t live to eat. So where does chocolate come into this debate?
My husband is a very good cook (which he has done professionally in the past) and he can turn any ingredient into visual works of art that also taste absolutely delicious, however he is not a gourmand and believes that we don’t need to make a fuss of food, because food is there to keep us alive. He believes, as do I, that humans eat far too much – far more than they need to survive. So where then would the balance be between enough and too much, whilst still enjoying treats that are readily available… like chocolate?
I too believe that food is given to us to keep us alive, and I believe in the celebration of food. I try to think of nature as a whole. Mother earth graciously gives us an abundance of food with a plethora of flavors and perfumes (odors) – so diverse and each individually interesting. We, with our human bodies so intricate and complicated, have been given taste-buds. Our taste buds are there not only to give us pleasure, but to warn us of potential poisons and possible threat to our lives via the mouth. Our noses are placed directly above our mouths to work in conjunction as a first sensory or line of defense, and similarly as a confirmation of the arrival of pleasure. Before that, our eyes decide if the nose shall be engaged and then thereafter our taste buds. We can also bring our sense of touch into the description of this experience as a whole. Anyway… in order to honor this entire experience, it is in my opinion that food must always be handled with the utmost respected appreciation and the celebration of fusing several flavors, perfumes and colors together must be daily practice. How dare we dishonor the hard work of mother nature by choosing to eat without celebration?
I am not saying that every time one prepares food it needs to be a time consuming practice and that we must have a big party with friends from far and wide to enjoy it – but that with whatever we choose to consume, conscious care must be given to the preparation and then again at that moment when we eat it. Overindulgence, scoffing and gluttony is a mockery of the offerings of mother earth – but considerate preparation of her offerings is a must! So, chocolate must be handled in this exact manner. One must only ever use the finest quality chocolate and then prepare it with care. How wonderful to think that a beautiful flowering Cocoa tree, has been cleverly used to transform its fruit into what we know today as chocolate! This clever transformation at the hands of humans is one to be celebrated – but only where it has not been exploited. Sadly, this is happening, and I will discuss this further in another post. For now, we are speaking of celebrating all things delicious and beautiful that have been offered to us by mother nature and discussing the importance of celebrating this simple truth consciously. It should also be eaten in moderation, like all other ingredients available to us.