Sharing Recipes

December 26, 2022

Teach them to your children, talking about them when you are at home and when you are away, when you lie down and when you rise up. ~ Deuteronomy 11:19

The Bible is long on stories that involve food, but short on recipes. I suspect that is because recipes were a matter of oral history passed on from one generation to the next. Last Wednesday, the participants of Sacred Seasons brought a recipe that reminded them of Christmas – from memory or written down.

There were as many different recipes as participants, and each was shared in such a way that each one morphed into entire stories that included multiple family members and changing materials and measurements. I learned that Fluffo was a brand of shortening, not marshmallow cream, and that lard (a favorite ingredient in almost every recipe) came in something called a firkin (a wooden cask that held about 10 gallons). We had a lot of laughs as we talked about making root beer (made with McCormick’s root beer flavoring), Half Pound loaves, bread which only turns out with King Arthur Flour, raisin cookies that required all hands-on deck to make, German sweet bread which required the strong arms of a man to mix it thoroughly, and spritz cookies made with a grandmother’s vintage Mirro cookie press.

The sharing and recipes were not particularly spiritual, but each resulted in laughs, questions, a few tears, and memories of generations now gone that have been passed on to us. We could almost smell and taste the items we talked about, could hear the popping of lids on root beer brewing, and feet rolling pins and dough in our hands. There was something embodied in our memories, and in our sharing. We were sharing recipes of life.

Bible verses and theological discourse are important, but much of our spirituality is made of embodied in memories and lessons taught hands-on in day-to-day life when we are at home and away, when we lie down and when we rise up and not from classes or lectures or sermons.

What recipe for life, what story might be waiting for you to share, or listen to? ~ Anne

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