I am a Bananas Foster. I am served splendidly in a variety of occasions, whether delivered aflame by a waiter in coattails or savored within the comforts of a cozy leather couch. I am exotic - the tastes of tropical banana caramelized with brown sugar and a hint of spicy cinnamon; yet I am also homely - mingled by the flavors of a mother's homemade vanilla ice cream. I am stable, my foundations, composed of fluffy yet slightly toasted pound cake, assuring that every drop of oozing goodness will be absorbed and savored. I am awaited in anticipation, inspiring the eager gaze of guests and the curiosity of children. I am the reminder of a college student's family tradition. I am the part of the day that makes life fun and joyful while being a subtle whisper to relish each moment in the present.
When you eat something, be aware of what it is that you put into your body. Be proud of what flavors excite your tongue. Be adventurous when scouring a menu. Be appreciative of the abundant harvest and hard work that graces your plate. While the concept of eating may have turned into a scientific analysis by leading dietitians and doctors, don't ever let the magic of food turn into something that causes anxiety. Take joy in the fact that you can delight in the wonder of new flavors and preserve traditions through the practice of cooking, eating and sharing this communion.
The next time you flip through a cookbook, scan the grocery isles or visit a local restaurant, ask yourself what the food you're about to eat says about you. I hope it tells a story and I hope that it is a happy one.