Sunday, November 2, 2014

Food for the Holidays

A buffet of Jello
This morning Iistening to NPR I heard an interview with a Chef about food for the Day of Dead celebration.  In his restaurant the food linked to the holiday will be available throughout November.

What captured my interest was the idea that when the family gathers, in addition to the traditional sweet breads, the menu is expected to include dishes favored by ones ancestors.  Those who are honored at the gathering.    It seems a lovely way to keep the memories and the spirit of the family alive through the generations.

Then it occurred to me that Thanksgiving about to be celebrated November 27 in the US, includes food in the same way.  In every family that I know there are certain dishes included partly because Aunt Susie or Grandma Jean always made them.  They are served  in remembrance of someone no longer with us.  Maybe it’s sausage stuffing.  Creamed onions.  Green beans with cream of mushroom soup.  In our family it’s Nana’s cranberry/sour cream/pineapple jello.  For some a frightening pink concoction.  For others a reminder of Nana.  At our table pink jello provides a way to link one generation to the next.

As we move into the holiday season, filled with food and drink.  Take a minute and think about who created that special (if unusual) dish that appears on your table every year. 

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