Thursday, March 17, 2005

food and ritual

today is st. patrick's day and i made two different kinds of irish soda bread. i am not irish, and i have no personal history of eating or making irish soda bread, but i appreciate creating a food that i know is part of a long and rich history on this day.

when my family has its chanukah party, i try to hand-grate potatoes and make latkes from scratch. the story of chanukah is no more a part of our holiday these days than the story of jesus' birth is part of most christmases, but i love maintaining a part of the story through the making of the food.

sometimes certain foods are ritualistic not from a national history or a religious tradition, but simply from personal history. it's comforting knowing that when connie hosts a breakfast or brunch, there will be maple-glazed ham. when joan and i go for breakfast, we'll have coffees and granola with fruit and an order of baguette. the ritual of it all is soothing and delicious.

next week is purim--i really ought to make hamentashen.

what food rituals do you have?

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