I’m the type of geek who has favourite words. In fact, I’m worse. I have a favourite word in Latin.
Colo – to till, husband, grow, tend, inhabit, maintain, cherish, adorn
Its glorious tangle of meanings always seemed to suggest something bigger and more complex to me. Something simultaneously fundamental to both human experience, and to the structures that shape it.
It must have appealed to others over the years, because it stayed in use and gradually became ‘culture’.
So what does this have to do with food? Well, food has always had the same magnetic pull to me. Complex and sensual, any interaction with food sets of a cascade of memories and ideas.
And when you bring these two ideas together, each with their own cluster of associations, it’s like pouring batter into a fryer of blistering oil. Bang! Crash! Crispiness!
Increasingly, I’m starting to think that my favourite Latin word; sociological theory; the history of humankind – it really all comes down to one question. What’s on the stove?
I try to answer this question from my little farmhouse cottage, which now finds itself sitting incongruously in Melbourne’s outer suburbs. I live with my wife MJ, our toddler Zool, and our constantly vigilant Chihuahua, Sarge. Vigilant for what, no one knows.