Kathleen Flinn, author “The Sharper Your Knife, the Less you Cry”
Visually (Describe a lemon to someone who has never seen one before. Only describe it visually. Do not use the word lemon.)
It is more shapely than its cousin, the robust orange. It sits on its side. It is almond shaped and crayon-yellow, vibrant. Its skin has tiny dimples. The ends come to a point, the place where it was attached to the tree is now a tiny dried circle, like a bellybutton. If you cut it open, its rind is thick and white and its pulp is a translucent, pale yellow, like weak morning light.
Tactile, texture (how does lemon feel in your hand?)
This is a fruit that will nestle into the palm of your hand. It rests there, not unlike the weight of an egg. The lemon gives a little when you squeeze it. The skin feels cool and the dimples communicate a thousand messages. One end rises, into a peak. The bellybutton on the opposite end is hard. A fingernail pressed into the lemon’s skin, will leave a mark. And its pulp will coat your fingertips with juice. Each buried seed wears a slippery coat.
Sound (close your eyes, what does it sound like to cut a lemon, don’t use “chopping” or “knife”)
I hear the rhythmic sounds of metal meeting board as it passes through the rind of a lemon. It’s easy, the lemon barely resists. Is that the sound of a French guillotine? Watch out! Something is sinister as the rhythm speeds up, and then ends in a clatter. Without seeing, I imgaine the lemon is oozing, vulnerable, exposed, flavor spilling out.
Smell (smell your lemon, how do you describe it if you walked into a room surrounded by the smell? don’t say “citrus” or “lemon”)
Inhale deeply, and you’ll feel the back of your tongue. The scent is flowery, with a tang. ‘Stay alert,’ it seems to say. It will clear away all other smells as it travels from your nose down your throat. It doesn’t linger, in a moment the aroma is gone, disappearing like dew hit by morning sun and you are left, awake.
Taste (think about how you describe it aside from “lemony,” what is the impact from the flavor? what does it remind you of?)
Bitter, bitter, bitter. My tongue pulls up in a bow and my cheeks clamp in a grimace. The pulp is cool and slippery, the acid lingers and coats the back of my teeth. Even the roof of my mouth prickles in objection as saliva floods in. I am cave swimming in Belize.
Write about your lunch using all 5 senses. Post, and Twitter using #all5 #ifbc. Pay attention to the moments in your life. Challenge yourself to embrace something you love even more.
This post was blogged live from the International Food Blogger Conference in Seattle.