M.F.K. Fisher, 83, whose elegant prose and keen observations raised food writing to the art of literature, died Monday at her home in Glen Ellen, Calif. She had suffered from Parkinson's disease and arthritis. From her childhood in Southern California through old age in Northern California and across thousands of miles in between, Mrs. Fisher was enthralled by food. She used food as a means of exploring life, and the passion she displayed for an eggplant or an apple seemed more truly concerned with people and their hunger, the real subject of most of her widely acclaimed books and articles. Critic Frances Taliaferro observed that calling her a leading food writer was like calling Cezanne "the leading painter of apples."