With the holidays approaching, the pervasiveness of cooking programs and the subsumption of lifestylism by the foodie industry, a few words from Marx on the historical specificity of value in relation to cooking:
‘The only thing which clearly lies at the bottom of the German stupidity is the fact that linguistically the words value [Wert] or worth [Würde] were first applied to the useful things themselves, which existed for a long time, even as “products of labour,” before becoming commodities. But this has as little to do with the scientific determination of the “value” of the commodity as the fact that the word salt was first used by the ancients for cooking salt, and consequently sugar, etc. also figure as varieties of salt from Pliny onwards (indeed, all colourless solids soluble in water and with a peculiar taste), and therefore the chemical category “salt” includes sugar, etc.’
Sorta makes you hope Pliny didn’t sugar his beef….