Of flavor and substance

For Christmas I received a copy of Robert Farrar Capon's The Supper of the Lamb, in which he expounds on the preparation of "lamb for eight persons four times." If you like MFK Fisher's writing (such as How to Cook a Wolf, or The Gastronomical Me), you would like this book as well. Both trick you into thinking about life by writing about food.

Here's an excerpt from Capon:

There, then, is the role of the amateur: to look the world back to grace. There, too, is the necessity of his work: His tribe must be in short supply; his job has gone begging. The world looks as if it has been left in the custody of a pack of trolls. Indeed, the whole distinction between art and trash, between food and garbage, depends on the presence or absence of a loving eye. Turn a statue over to a boor, and his boredom will break it to bits--witness the ruin of antiquity. On the other hand, turn a shack over to a lover; for all its poverty, its light and shadows warm a little, and its numbed surfaces prickle with feeling.
    Or, conclusively, peel an orange. Do it lovingly--in perfect quarters like little boats, or in tagged exfoliations like a flat map of the round world, or in one long spiral, as my grandfather used to do. Nothing is more likely to become garbage than orange rinds; but for as long as anyone looks at it in delight, it stands a million triumphant miles from the trash heap.
    That, you know, is why the world exists at all. It remains outside the cosmic garbage can of nothingness, not because it is such a solemn necessity that nobody can get rid of it, but because it is the orange peel hung on God's chandelier, the wishbone in His kitchen closet. He likes it; therefore, it stays. The whole marvelous collection of stones, skins, feathers, and string exists because at least one lover has never quite taken His eye off it, because the Dominus vivificans has his delight with the sons of men.