Reading your post, I found myself thinking about how popular food channels are and how much so many people LOVE to watch how food is prepared, even when they'll never eat what's on the screen! I'm personally not that much of a cook, and when the waiter/waitress tells me how a meal was prepared, I find that I don't really understand most of what they're saying. However, when I watch a show like chopped I can listen to them talk about what they're doing to the food and simultaneously SEE them do it. I actually feel like I learn something while I'm also salivating. How can we more visually show people the effort put into their meal? Not just for appreciation, but for actual enjoyment, just like watching an episode of Chopped!
I also thought about your leftover point. I personally love leftovers, to the extent that I'll purposefully stop myself from eating if I know I'd only finish 3/4ths of the meal at the table and would rather eat half now and half later. I also realize some things lend themselves better to leftovers than others. How can we more intentionally prepare food in such a way that they can not only be easily packaged as leftovers, but maybe even make people WANT to save some for leftovers? That would have the added benefit of people stretching food AND wasting less.