Hi Writing Playground! Thanks for having me here! As I’m hijacking What’s Cooking Wednesday this week I thought I’d talk about romance and food.
“One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.” - Virginia Woolf
Boy, do I love food. I own 85 recipe books and have stacks of cooking magazines. Every Sunday evening I troll through these recipes and plan the week’s menu. (Yep, I’m pathologically organized, but I also LOVE to know what I’m going to eat each day so I can imagine it. I have Italian ancestry, what can I say?) My mom taught me how to bake, but my husband taught me how to cook. In the early part of our courtship we spent hours together in the kitchen, planning, cooking and eating. Food formed an important part of our lives- so much so that when we had our first child I started writing recipes for an organic vegetable delivery company to supplement our income (I got paid in vegetables!).
There’s something immensely sexy about a guy providing food for his woman- maybe it’s the hunter-gatherer thing, or just that it’s romantic (at least to me), when a man thinks ahead and plans a meal. After a hard day’s work I like nothing better than to sit down and be looked after. The day we brought our first baby home my husband cooked a particular meal…and every single time we eat that dish (15 years later) I remember how excited I felt with my brand new baby, my life turned upside down and my husband putting food on my plate. Now my baby is getting grown-up I’ve started to teach him a few things in the kitchen too- hopefully one day his wife will thank me!
So it’s no surprise that food figures in my books. And usually, it’s the hero providing something for the heroine. As a writer this is a great tool to forge a connection between the reader and the characters. We all have to eat, to some it’s a chore, to others it’s a labour of love. To all of us it’s a necessity. As a reader I like to have my senses stimulated and what better way than by delicious cooking aromas? In my debut book One Month to Become a Mum, Luke cooks a divine hot hummus and garlic prawns. As they eat, sparks fly and what begins as a semi-innocent picnic ends in a sizzling night of passion.
In book two, Waking Up with His Runaway Bride, (due out July 2012) heroine Mim’s heart begins to soften as she sees Connor working at a breakfast club providing food to impoverished kids. And in book three (as yet untitled) I indulged my food obsession further by having brooding hero Adam provide two meals for heroine Skye, carefully picking out ingredients he knew would have a meaning for her – an action which, she realizes, means much more than words.
So I’ll be looking forward to reading the What’s Cooking Wednesday blog and taking note of the recipes! What about you, do you find men in the kitchen sexy, do you have a particular meal you and your partner like to share? Or do you cringe at the thought of your man/son/brother being let loose with a spatula?
You can visit Louisa online at her website.