Exploring: The Church, Theology and Food

Citrus Tomato Marmalade

It seemed like a really good idea at the time to buy around 10 pounds of “second tomatoes”. They are still good but for some reason since they are not without blemish don’t get sold for the regular price. Each year I can and each year I forget that it is a process. Even the simplest of recipes take time. I cannot rush the water to boil in the canning pot. I cannot ask the marmalade to thicken before it wants to. We all have our blemishes. We all want things to happen, when we want them to happen. But, in God’s world we are not seconds.

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Let me quote Thomas Keller: “When you acknowledge, as you must, that there is no such thing as perfect food, only the idea of it, then the real purpose of striving toward perfection becomes clear: to make people happy, that is what cooking is all about.”

It comes as no surprise to anyone that I love to eat.  Every year during the summer I ask myself the question “Why did God create a world where every living creature must eat?”   My understanding is that food is a gift of love.  The God that gave us tomatoes, corn on the cob, strawberries and blueberries is a God of love.

Fall Preparations

By becoming a member of a CSA (community supported agriculture) for the past four years I have learned to eat seasonally.  It took a while to get used to and as we enter the Fall season I have to switch my fruits and vegetables as well as my clothes.  There is always a tinge of sadness as peaches, tomatoes, corn, and plums take a back seat to apples, squash

I realized that some food chains only put out “perfect” unblemished food in their stores.

The food that I receive from my CSA includes dirt covered tomatoes and potatoes, gritty lettuce and a few corn worms here and there.  All these vegetables require washing and re-washing. 

They are not perfect by any means but there is something comfort in knowing that my food is not perfect as stores would like us to think.

Veggies, veggies, everywhere!

The past few days has been a bevy of cooking.  The cookbook “Vegan Planet” has been  a lifesaver, pesto, vegan spinokapeda, kolarabi, more tomatoes.  This past Sunday’s gospel reading was on the feeding of five thousand.  I  believe that eating and the preparation of food is a communal activity.  Flavors shared, friends and family shared, food shared with the least, last and lost.  This week we witnessed the devastation of the drought in Somalia, those who do not have enough.  There was a story shared of a young infant who was found abandoned along the side of the road.  Probably the result of the death of her mother.  The girl was found, and taken in as a part of a family of seven.  Enough to share, enough to care.

Three of my favorite items of summer.  As an urban gardener who has all of her tomatoes and herbs in pots on the deck.  I enjoy rubbing my fingers through the leaves of a tomato plant.  The smell is only one you can get during the season ans is so easily forgotten in the hothouse tomatoes of winter.   In my haste to have enough basil I planted more than enough plants and am now on a fresh pasta and pesto roll.  To end my summer favorites is corn.  The CSA I belong to announced today that their first corn will be in the box.  In all these wonderful and simple summer blessings I give thanks, and a continual search for recipes.