How did we humans get to be the ones to control the world? By being smarter than other species, yes, but how did we get smarter? The answer, according to a Brazilian study, is because we learned to cook our food. Food became easier to chew and digest and , in some cases, contributed more calories. So ancient humans now needed to spend less time looking for food and could , instead, ponder other important questions like who made the universe, is the earth flat, could I work even less than now if I conquered another country and made those people work for me etc.
Cooking our food instead of eating it raw brought a new ritual to human lives: the camaraderie in the kitchen of those who prepared the meal, the gathering around the table to enjoy nourishment and appreciate the food and also those who prepared it were all special moments. Perhaps that is why sometimes our strongest memories relate to food: the smell of herbs fresh from the garden, the crunch of the apple just picked from the tree, the aroma of meals on festive days. The act of cooking gives a deeper meaning to what would otherwise be, merely, fuel.