What makes us Human?

by Victor and Marcella Hazan on November 5, 2010

Part of a Facebook Conversation

making Parmigiano Reggiano

Language and cooking – home cooking that is – are vehicles for consciousness, the thing that makes us human. Cooking, like language, is most expressive of our identity when it is associated with a place, when it is grounded in a past and, because it is alive and evolves, when it can expect a future. When cooking is invented or, as the media likes to call it in Ferran’s instance and in that of other chefs, reinvented, it comes from nowhere and has nowhere to go, it exists only in that moment, it is no more than an amusement, at best just an amuse bouche. I love language and dialects and the flavors that are linked to them; I enjoy accents that speak to me of territory, of history, of class; in my family and that of my husband Victor we have used Italian, Romagnolo, Turkish, Greek, Arabic, Japanese, French, Spanish. I have no need for Esperanto or for Ferranto.

Comments on this entry are closed.

Jamie November 10, 2010 at 9:59 am

We often have this discussion at home and I’ve also written about how food not only brings us together but how we’ve used food over the years to teach our boys about who they are and where they came from. They are a mixture of many cultures and religions so we’ve used food to tell them about cultures and history and family lore. It brings them – and us – closer to other cultures and helps us all understand each other better. And language, well, as a tri-lingual family we love language and language has been a playground – and we’ve tried playing with it all to make living the multi-cultural life fun and exciting rather than a burden for our sons. Thanks for posting this. It’s lovely and truly though provoking.

Previous post:

Next post: