Evidently there’s alchemy in cooking as in love — It all depends on the proper touch!
Let the meats and vegetables be combined and “married,” instead of meeting each other for the first time when served on the table in their respective confirmed bachelorhood and unspoiled virginity, and you will find that each has a fuller personality than you ever dreamed of.
— Lin Yutang
This puts a whole ‘nother spin on having — let’s say — moo shu pork or bouillabaisse for dinner, compared to plain old meat and potatoes, plunked down bare bones next to each other on a thick white china plate.
The French are considered supreme romantics (at least when it comes to food and love). But the Chinese are as notoriously pragmatic in their approach to life as we are, so the subtlety in this dictum of Lin Yutang comes as a surprise to me. Do you think he would have considered the American approach to cooking as a kind of Bim Bam Thank You Ma’am of the kitchen? I wonder —–