True enough, but I'd put it slightly differently: The primary requisite for writing well about food is hunger.
It's entirely possible that Liebling was still hungry after eating 10 dozen oysters, three swans, and a suckling pig smothered in sauce Mantua -- or one of the other enormous repasts described in his books -- so I'm not sure we disagree. But while I always have an appetite, I don't have much interest in writing or thinking about food, much less cooking, unless I'm truly hungry. As in: I had 1/3 cup of Grape Nuts for breakfast, a light Yoplait for lunch and WHAT THE F*** IS FOR DINNER AND IT HAD BETTER BE AMAZING.
When I'm hungry, food becomes much more fascinating, as anyone who has ever been on a diet will attest. Since Thanksgiving I've been eating my way through the remains of one feast or another and have been so amply fed on turkey sandwiches, Ajwain cashews, leftover tenderloin, pecan pie, and tuna mousse that I haven't been hungry for more than 90 seconds.
Trying to correct that. Tonight: The first meal from Lynn Rosetto Kasper's Splendid Table, for which I prepared by having a tiny sandwich for lunch and eschewing the free cheese samples at Whole Foods.