……show us a lot about the power of food to bring a community together. Someone had to collect the recipes, each named person wrote down and shared something from their table, someone typed the pages, someone organized the book, someone punched the holes, someone tied the yarn that bound the book….the book has recipes, scripture, has anecdotes about how to preserve love. The gentle and fragile binding of the cookbook holds the congregation and what each of them materially and spiritually consumes. It is a record of loving effort.
Imagine putting together a cookbook with your loved ones, maybe its a collection of places and restaurants you have been with each other or alone. A shared biography of iPhone- Instagram food pictures. It doesnt’ have to be glossy and polished with professional photography. It can be messy, incomplete and loosely tied. It would still hold already shared or hoped for shared joy. Save this for a quick weekend project on a cold winter day when you are at home while a warm pot of stew simmers on the stove.
The poem about “how to preserve love” in the cookbook made me smile,
Give as much as you can away for it dries up immediately when put on a shelf.
Mixed with kindness, it is your best recipe for happiness.
Thank you to Rachel Perrin, my most nurturing and steady mother-in-law, who shared this mid-1970s cookbook from Villa Rica Baptist Church in Georgia and taught me how to make biscuits, coconut pie, pecan pie, chicken and dumplings, meatloaf and so much more.
Happy cooking and sharing everyone,