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Life is like a Sourdough Starter...

By Himeka Curiel, Managing Editor, Wesleyan University Magazine

From TV cooking competitions to food blogging, cooking videos to Instagram posts, sharing how we cook and what we choose to eat provides an opportunity to connect during a time when it feels like we are, physically and ideologically, farther apart than ever before.

We all saw it—Instagram feeds and Facebook videos overrun with images of freshly baked bread and succulent, mouth-watering dishes that you could practically taste through the screen.

As COVID-19 pandemic restrictions forced many of us indoors and social gatherings became an exercise in calculated risk, cooking and baking became a global phenomenon, with fledgling and veteran home cooks proudly posting their creations all over social media.

For many, it was a chance to take up a new hobby or skill, but it also became a form of creative and cultural expression, one that connects us in ways that go beyond biology and helps foster a sense of identity, community, and making the unfamiliar more “palatable” through the shared experience.

“We have a saying in food studies: Everybody has a food story,” explains Rachel Waugh ’17, founder and director of Denver’s Museum of Food and Culture. “Whether it’s good, whether it’s bad, everybody has some sort of relationship to food. It’s part of our daily life. We have to engage with food at some point or we’re not going to survive.”




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