Liturgical Cooking

This is a rich month for Feasting along with the Church. I’m late in posting pictures of two of our favorite Feasts, but the extraordinary culinary creations that came about simply cry out for publication!

From Cooking For Christ by Florence Berger (originally published 1949):

“If I am to carry Christ home with me from the altar, I am afraid He will have to come to the kitchen because much of my time is spent there. I shall welcome Him on Easter and He shall eat new lamb with us. I shall give homage to Him on Epiphany and shall cook a royal feast for Him and my family. I shall mourn with Him on Holy Thursday and we shall taste the bitter herbs of the Passover and break unleavened bread. Then the cooking which we do will add special significance to the Church Year and Christ will sanctify our daily bread. That is what is meant by the liturgical year in the kitchen.

If I am to create, and I believe God made me to do just that, why can’t I create feast day specials from eggs and milk and butter? These are the materials which I know…So I have resolved to stick to my cooking and beat my way into heaven.”

Michaelmas Day – (Michaelmas Day is observed on September 29, but it was close enough to count as October Feasting. St. Michael is decidedly fierce atop a cake of devil’s food that Sweet Pea made. It has been pierced by what seems an astounding number of toothpicks…um…I mean swords. Once we set the cake out to take a picture, Sparkly announced that he wanted candles. “Candles?” I asked incredulously. Why? This is not a birthday cake Sparkly! We need some flames – St. Michael will beat back the flames of Hell. Hmmmmm…..I thought…..I had no way to argue… out came the birthday candles and they were carefully and strategically placed all around the devil’s food cake and lit amongst triumphant smiles. Then, we ate! Delicious! There is a Scottish tradition that the entire cake must be eaten by the family in one night. I’m sorry to report that these Scots were not up to observing that tradition.

Memorial of Our Lady of the Rosary – I was late pulling something together for Our Lady of the Rosary. So, in the kitchen that evening I crafted my plan…it would have to involve something with enough parts to be able to construct a Rosary. I had not enough batter to make enough cupcakes. I am, if nothing else, last minute. Chicken teriyaki with peas and carrots fit the bill! The Hail Mary’s are chicken pieces, the Our Fathers are peas and of course you can see the crucifix is made up of carrots. I liked having the sweetness of the teriyaki sauce on the chicken as a culinary pointer to Our Sweet Heavenly Mother.

There are so many more days upcoming in which to celebrate and sanctify our offerings on the dinner table. I enjoy so much all of the timely articles at Catholic Cuisine for ideas! Be sure to check them out!

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