Dispatch 9 - Writing Food Descriptions

I love food. I should have written Eat, Pray, Love or Chocolat. I still have time, right? Maybe I can pick out a fancy new pen name and write novels about food. Who should I be: Cherry Bouillabaisse, Rosemary Sandwich, or Cinnamon Sweet? That last one kinda sounded like a stripper name. Okay, scratch that idea.


I love to write about food. In my forthcoming steampunk series, I have a couple of nice scenes where I pay close attention to the pleasures of food. I think I write about food because I write at night, usually when I am hungry, and usually when there is absolutely nothing to eat in the house. Hunger inspires writing. I find myself thinking about all the food I wish I had at my fingertips . . . a nice crème brulee with a glossy sugar coating that taps when you break it. Sigh. It feels too trendy to call myself a foodie and too much like an episode of Dr. Phil to call myself a food addict. I appreciate food so I pay attention to food details when I write. Writing about food is fun!

Angeli on Decatur in New Orleans, home of the best pizza I have ever eaten!

For today's dispatch, I offer five tips for writing great food details.


  • Describe the texture. Is it bumpy, smooth, or frothy? We love the frothy texture of a freshly blended banana smoothie. We love the smooth texture of homemade chocolate pudding served in grandma's blue, plastic parfait cups. Don't forget to write in texture.
  • What do you hear? Do we hear the silverware clattering against fine porcelain plates as we sit at long, polished-cherry banquet table? Do we hear the clink of crystal wine goblets? Do we hear the sizzle of meat roasting on a spit or cheap hotdogs frying in scratched teflon pan? What we hear as we dine can impact our overall experience.

  • Describe how it smells. Sometimes a simple scent description like "fresh baked bread" is great, but how does rosemary infused lamb smell when it's cooking? What did that beautiful buttercream wedding cake smell like? What scent is the air filled with when something is fried, baked, sautéed, etc?  

  • Give me a visual.  Does the pizza's cheese pull away with long strings as you lift a slice? Does watery blood seep from the undercooked deer heart? (yuck). Does the overwarm chocolate sweat with beads of sugary oil? Whether or not we want to eat something is often cued by our sense of sight. Don't like escargot? I bet the look has something to do with it (because they do taste good, no matter how ugly they look). Every good chef will tell you that plating is important. You need to mentally plate the food for your reader. Can you come up with a clever metaphor for the colorful shish kabobs being cooked during at a Fourth of July backyard BBQ? Does the dish of dill-infused salmon sprinkled with capers and sided by dainty fingers of asparagus coated lightly in pale-yellow hollandaise sauce also have a pale blue pansy on the plate? Eating is visual!

Plate your writing!

  • Taste is king. It doesn't taste good, how does it really taste? Try to expand your descriptions of taste. Ever eat a bologna sandwich on white bread slathered with too much Miracle Whip? How does it really taste? Gross, sure, but also tangy, slimy, mushy, salty, etc. You might want to say disgusting, but there are other ways to make the point.

Escargot, can you believe it?

Writing about food is a lot of fun. If you really love food, a fun writing exercise might be to describe the best or worst food you've ever eaten. Adding sensory detail to your writing, as described above (notice we touched on taste, touch, sight, smell, and hearing), can be a lot of fun!


Au Petit Paris in Frostburg, MD, home of the BEST food I've ever eaten!






20 comments

  1. I always found writing usual essays really serious thing, as well as college entrance essay. I always thought that for that you should be really devoted to writing, to have your own points of inspiration and to have desire to write. So thanks God, we can use writing services now.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Similarly, the importance of correct punctuation cannot be overemphasised. You can assemble your thoughts into a coherent and well-structured essay, yet allow for ambiguity through the incorrect use of punctuation. Dissertation Writing Service

    ReplyDelete
  3. I’m curious to find out what blog platform you happen to be using? I’m having some minor security issues with my latest website and I’d like to find something more safe. Do you have any recommendations? Buy Custom Essays

    ReplyDelete
  4. We all have one: a comfort food. Whether it's a food we rely on in times of need, or just when we need a little reassurance, baked comfort food make us feel a little bit better. This article lists a few comfort foods and what makes them comfortable.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Hi Friend!
    If you have a moment, please take a look at my site:new jersey escorts Have a great day!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Enslavement avoids changing and building up an inventive scope of feeling about existence and the innovative power of being otherworldly being inside what your improving the situation pleasure.
    pressure cookers

    ReplyDelete
  7. Hi there, You’ve done a fantastic job. I will definitely digg it and personally suggest to my friends. I am confident they’ll be benefited from this web site. Miss feather hair extensions https://www.continental-delight.com.sg

    ReplyDelete
  8. When you are searching for lucrative investments, you do not Baked comfort food need to be looking for diamond mines or new car dealerships; you can make big money from investing in smaller ventures if you invest in something that people really want. For instance, lucrative investments may be investing five hundred dollars in a small town bakery. Look around, how many bakeries do you see in your neighborhood these days?

    ReplyDelete
  9. Details state that rates of food narrow mindedness are rising. My hypothesis is that it's at any rate halfway because of sugar in our weight control plans - including tricky sugars that are regularly seen as invigorating, address for example, agave, natural product, organic product juice, and sugars.

    ReplyDelete
  10. For grown-ups and more seasoned kids, it is typically conceivable to accomplish a sufficient protein â?? Cacahuètes

    ReplyDelete
  11. It is a very great platform for learning food preparation so that these foods can make it at home, thus I really enjoy reading and also appreciate your work.
    dissertation writing services uk

    ReplyDelete
  12. As whole food supplements are natural products, it would be optimal if the manufacturer employed practices of sustainability and green policy.bees nuc for sale

    ReplyDelete
  13. To be totally healthy and discover a rundown of healthy foods to eat, you are anyway going to require something beyond products of the soil. Beauty Tips

    ReplyDelete
  14. Great work did by you. Informative and problem-solving content that users can easily digest can work for all types of blogs. When a user finds something informative on a blog, he/she is more likely to come back from your side.
    professional assignment help

    ReplyDelete
  15. Components to think about when putting away food for long haul use food containers

    ReplyDelete
  16. When you use a genuine service, you will be able to provide instructions, share materials and choose the formatting style. Augmentin

    ReplyDelete
  17. Searching for help? This site Qualityessay is an academic writing company that employs writers who offer made-from-scratch term papers, research papers, and other assignments.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Ducat provides best java training institute in noida as per the current industry standards. Our training programs will enable professionals to secure placements in MNCs. We are providing our world-class training facilities for all the students who want to become professional java developer.

    java training in noida

    ReplyDelete
  19. Its a great pleasure reading your post.Its full of information I am looking for and I love to post a comment that "The content of your post is awesome" Great work. buy instagram likes real paypal

    ReplyDelete