Eat to Live, or Live to Eat?
I came across this question the other day, and I very much knew my answer straight away. I LIVE TO EAT. I love food and am always up for trying something new (although I'm not a fan of mushrooms, they're a little too slimy for my liking).
I've been listening to Jessie Ware and her mum Lennie's podcast "Table Manners" throughout the lockdown life mostly while I try a new bake, and have thoroughly enjoyed the stories that come with the celebrities that they interview - lighting the fire for me to write this blog post.(Definitely worth checking out if you love any type of food-based podcast.)
It's kind of a running joke in my family that I'm always thinking about food. I have breakfast and start thinking about lunch... I eat lunch and start thinking about what we can have for dinner. You get the idea. Likewise, the idea of being "hangry" (being hungry and angry at the same time) is VERY REAL. To all my friends and family: I'm sorry for what I may have said when I was hangry.
Something else I get asked a lot is "where do you store it all?", "I bet you don't eat chocolate, there's nothing of you." Well, surprise(!) actually I eat A LOT of food (including chocolate 😋). Lockdown has given me a great chance to try new recipes*, since I've had more time to do so and I'd like to keep it up after lockdown. To me food creates love, and food comes from love. The idea that you create something to share with other people is pretty cool... whether that's through baking or cooking I always love to share it. I think it's really important to teach this from a young age - not only is cooking a basic skill that everyone should be capable of, but it teaches people to have a healthy relationship with food. By cooking from scratch you know what goes into your meals, and therefore what is going into your body - unlike the ready meals that can so easily hide ingredients.
Variety within your diet is important. Eat as many colours as possible, and from as many different food groups as possible in order to max out the amount of nutrients you get into your body. I know for some people, they would agree that they just "eat to live". Eating for some may just come from boredom or stress, whilst others only eat because they need a regular routine and some sort of meal to fuel the daily to-do list, but they don't put much thought into what is going into their body and when. I'm not saying that's a bad thing necessarily - food isn't the top of everyones priority list, like it is mine - but there can be so much enjoyment that comes from food, and I'm very lucky to have so much choice of what I can cook and what ingredients I can use.
Eating dinner with family allows you to catch up on their day. Going out to eat with friends is a chance to socialise. Going to new places on holiday gives us a chance to explore new cuisines and ingredients (Sheldon and I could literally write a whole blog just on food places from holidays we've been on... note to self to save that idea for another day.) I like to choose foods that compliment my exercise regime; I eat regular meals and aim to drink the suggested amount of water each day. I enjoy working out regularly and a variety of food is the best way to fuel the energy I need to exercise; eating a chocolate bar every now and then when I fancy it isn't a problem to me... I don't feel guilty for eating it, despite the fact some "diets" would say differently. Eating certain foods to gain or lose weight is a whole other conversation of course (we'll save that for another day too ). There's no right or wrong answer to this debate - for we all view food differently, but what I want to know from you is, do you eat to live, or live to eat?
* This has been one of my favourite meals that I've experimented with over the past few weeks. The focaccia recipe came from a family friend and turned out amazing (although slightly burnt since our oven cooks a little unevenly), and we got the idea for the risotto from a family holiday we went on to Lake Garda a few years back. The original was Orange and Prawn Risotto that dad had ordered in a restaurant in Garda - sitting along the lake front one lunchtime - we all wish we had ordered it once we had tasted it!
This was my first time cooking risotto and was fairly pleased with how it turned out. It took a while to cook as it needed a lot of attending to, yet it was worth every minute and I'd definitely make it again. Food creates so many memories; a way to connect people together - it's something we all have in common, and perhaps the main reason that I Live to Eat.