Let us not take this food too seriously. It’s just food. It’s not nuclear physics. It’s not medical research. It’s eating, and it should be fun, and it’s all about having a good time with people you care about. And the tone wasn’t terribly serious, which was intentional. Some people in the food world thought we weren’t serious people. But we were. We took it all seriously enough, you know. We were also just fun-loving girls.
~~Julee Rosso (about the start of the SILVER PALATE cookbook)
LOVE AFTER LOVE
The time will come
when, with elation,
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror,
and each will smile at the other’s welcome,
and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you
all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,
the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.
Hospitality is the capacity to take ourselves out of ourselves, to change our minds and soften our judgments. Hospitality makes of every stranger a potential friend. Now that is holiness.
~ Joan Chittister
“I think whether you’re talking about art or politics or just getting up in the morning and trying to live your life, it’s useful to be able to seek out that joy where you can find it and operate on the basis of hope rather than despair. We all have different ways of coping, but I think that the sense of optimism that I have relied on is generally the result of appreciating other people, first and foremost, my own children and my family and my friends. But also the voices that I hear through books and that you hear through song and that tell you you’re not alone.”
We are all equal in the eyes of the stove. -Jacques Pépin
…Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?
“Wine is God’s special drink. The purpose of good wine is to inspire us to a livelier sense of gratitude to God.”
– John Calvin
YOUR TRUE HOME
Each one of us is alone in the world. It takes great courage to meet the full force of your aloneness. Most of the activity in society is subconsciously designed to quell the voice crying in the wilderness within you. The mystic Thomas a Kempis said that when you go out into the world, you return having lost some of yourself. Until you learn to inhabit your aloneness, the lonely distraction and noise of society will seduce you into false belonging, with which you will only become empty and weary. When you face your aloneness, something begins to happen. Gradually, the sense of bleakness changes into a sense of true belonging. This is a slow and open-ended transition but it is utterly vital in order to come into rhythm with your own individuality. In a sense this is the endless task of finding your true home within your life. It is not narcissistic, for as soon as you rest in the house of your own heart, doors and windows begin to open outwards to the world. No longer on the run from your aloneness, your connections with others become real and creative. You no longer need to covertly scrape affirmation from others or from projects outside yourself. This is slow work; it takes years to bring your mind home.
Excerpt from ETERNAL ECHOES
The world is a crazy place. Cook for someone soon. Light the candles. Breathe. Everyone’s fed.
I hope I can live long enough to cook all the recipes I’ve printed and to drink the wine I’ve cellared. Amen.
Among virtually every culture on Earth, anything worth doing is best done over dinner. Bring out a nicely braised roast, a hot loaf of bread, and a slice of lemon pie, and rifts can be healed, pacts sealed, loves revealed. Even the condemned do not want to leave the world without one last supper. –Natalie Angier —New York Times, November, 2000.
Quote of the Day: Vocation
IT COMES FROM the Latin vocare, to call, and means the work a man is called to by God. There are all different kinds of voices calling you to all different kinds of work, and the problem is to find out which is the voice of God rather than of Society, say, or the Super-ego, or Self-interest. By and large a good rule for finding out is this. The kind of work God usually calls you to is the kind of work (a) that you need most to do and (b) that the world most needs to have done. If you really get a kick out of your work, you’ve presumably met requirement (a), but if your work is writing TV deodorant commercials, the chances are you’ve missed requirement (b). On the other hand, if your work is being a doctor in a leper colony, you have probably met requirement (b), but if most of the time you’re bored and depressed by it, the chances are you have not only bypassed (a) but probably aren’t helping your patients much either.
Neither the hair shirt nor the soft berth will do. The place God calls you to is the place where your deep gladness and the world’s deep hunger meet.
– Originally published in Wishful Thinking by FREDERICK BUECHNER
It seems that all my bridges have been burnt But you say that’s exactly how this grace thing works. It’s not the long walk home that will change this heart But the welcome I receive with every start
– Roll Away Your Stone, Mumford & Sons
Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds you plant. —Robert Louis Stevenson
**If we have no peace, it’s because we have forgotten that we belong to one another. –Mother Teresa
**The duty of privilege is absolute integrity. — John O’Donohue
Do what you can, with what you have, where you are. Theodore Roosevelt Read more at http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/t/theodorero100965.html#EFTatqY5egicMphI.99
(editorial comment: Teddy was quite Methodist!! Who knew?!)
“Whoever, then, thinks that he understands the Holy Scriptures, or any part of them, but puts such an interpretation upon them as does not tend to build up this twofold love of God and our neighbor, does not yet understand them as he ought.” ― Augustine of Hippo, On Christian Doctrine
Patience is choosing to control your emotions rather than letting your emotions control you. -Mark Merrill
“If a person has ugly thoughts, it begins to show on the face. And when that person has ugly thoughts every day, every week, every year, the face gets uglier and uglier until you can hardly bear to look at it.
A person who has good thoughts cannot ever be ugly. You can have a wonky nose and a crooked mouth and a double chin and stick-out teeth, but if you have good thoughts it will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.”
“There is no spectacle on earth more appealing than that of a beautiful woman in the act of cooking dinner for someone she loves.” ― Thomas Wolfe
“We drank our whiskeys. It was the good stuff and it tasted of salt, sea, rain, wind and the Old Testament.”
― Adrian McKinty, The Cold Cold Ground: A Detective Sean Duffy Novel
And may God bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you can make a difference in the world so that you can do what others claim cannot be done to bring justice and kindness to all our children and the poor.
– A Franciscan benediction
Eating and drinking needs but a beginning.
“What did you do as a child that made the hours pass like minutes? Herein lies the key to your earthly pursuits.” ~ Carl Jung
Seize the moment. Remember all those women on the ‘Titanic’ who waved off the dessert cart. ~ Erma Bombeck
Be gentle when you touch bread.
Let it not lie un-cared for, unwanted.
So often bread is taken for granted.
There is so much beauty in bread –
Beauty of sun and soil,
Beauty of patient toil.
Winds and rains have caressed it,
Christ often blessed it.
Be gentle when you touch bread.
(From the More-With-Less Cookbook put out by the Mennonites.)