Food is like language. When I see this, I realize that it’s no wonder that I fell in love with food blogging, because it combines two of my favourite things in all the world…language and food. These may seem like disparate passions, but in fact they are not. In many ways, they are remarkably similar. In human language, there are endless combinations of words that allow us to continually be creating unique sentences that have never been uttered before. Food is the same. There are endless combinations of ingredients and flavours that allow us to constantly create new dishes and new tastes. Both are a unique expression of ourselves, of who we are and how we think.
Look at me getting all sorts of philosophical here. But it’s true and this recipe is a perfect example. It is essentially a riff on Maria Emmerich’s Flourless Chocolate Torte, which she kindly allowed me to post a few weeks ago. I got thinking about how I wanted to add peanut butter to this torte, because I want to add peanut butter to pretty much everything. It’s a sickness, really. And then it somehow occurred to me that the basic torte batter would make a great brownie too. And suddenly I could see in my mind’s eye a perfect, dark dense brownie with swirls of peanut butter throughout. I knew it would be a match made in heaven.
Sometimes, however, reality doesn’t quite go as smoothly as the image in my head. I find that the ingredients didn’t quite combine the way I thought they would and I have to improvise. But the same can be said for language and writing. When sitting down to write, I have a basic structure in my head but sometimes as I go along, I find it’s not quite coming together the way I thought and I need to change tack. Again this recipe is a perfect example. When I’d mixed in my eggs, I found all of my oil rising to the surface of my batter and it wasn’t combining properly. I knew I needed something to bring it together, so I threw in a little almond flour and bingo. The oil reabsorbed and away we went. And when I first started writing this post, I had a different idea altogether. I’d written half of it when I hit upon the idea that food was like language, the way they both combine in infinitely unique ways. Suddenly I found myself writing a whole new post.
Food and language. Language and food. I love them both. I love the way I can play with them and rework them and reinvent them constantly. And I love the way they can both suddenly challenge me in the middle and force me to rethink my approach. A never-ending adventure.