Food: The universal love language


Graphic by Shraddha Sriram

People choose to show their appreciation in various ways. There are five established love languages (different ways people express and receive love) — words of affirmation, quality time, receiving gifts, acts of service and physical touch. There is no one correct way to express your appreciation for somebody whether the relationship is family, platonic or romantic. It is ultimately up to every individual in terms of what they find the most comfort in. However, no matter what order the five love languages are personally ranked, there is another language that always takes the first place spot, the universal love language — food.

Although eating out is an enjoyable experience, no Michelin-star restaurant can come anywhere near to the comfort found in a home-cooked meal. Whether you or a loved one cooks this meal, it is superior by miles. At a restaurant, you are tasting somebody’s work because that is simply their job. But at home, you are tasting somebody’s effort, care, dedication — their love. Someone who genuinely cares about you and wants to cook a dish full of flavor and love, but most importantly, make sure you are not left hungry.

Love is priceless. You cannot put a price on a home-cooked meal. Yet, people are able to create delicious plates even with the simplest ingredients on a budget. The taste of food is not based on money – it is based on love. With home-cooked meals, it is less about the presentation and more about the taste. Although the presentation may be more rustic and not look like a work of art painted by DaVinci himself, ultimately, it does not matter. In the end, the food is going to be eaten, so does it really matter how good it looks? As the saying, it is what is on the inside that counts. Everyone would rather eat something that tastes appetizing and wholesome than just have something that looks aesthetically pleasing and taste mediocre at best.

Food as a love language is more than a fresh, home-cooked meal: it is being served a bowl of chicken noodle soup when you are sick in bed or handed a bowl of cut and hand-peeled fruit without saying a word. Sometimes, it is coming home late at night to a dinner table with a pre-made plate covered with saran wrap ready for you to pop into the microwave. Things that are so simple and so minor. Food is as straightforward as serving something on a plate, yet when it comes from the heart, it always manages to produce the best experience.