One of the things I love about Chowhound is that it provides topics for thought and for dinner table conversation. Some responses to the food obsession thread got me to thinking: do you have to know how to prepare food in order to truly appreciate good food?
I posed this question to my husband who is a bang-up good cook. His response was a fervent, unyielding YES.
I mentioned that you don't have to know how every brush stroke was applied or where the canvas came from in order to appreciate a painting and to differentiate between good art and bad. You don't even have to know how wine is made to be able to comprehend the subtleties. There are many other analogies I could draw, but I thought I'd throw this out to the hounds to chew over.
I am undecided about this because I know how to cook. I can eat something in a restaurant and figure out how it was made and detect most of the ingredients in it. That awareness may help me appreciate the difficulty in getting a dish right, but does it really help me taste it better?