The Kitchen Table is Your Family Alter
by Libby Jennison
The kitchen table is your family’s gathering place. There we can share ourselves after our days being separated from the people we love and that love us.
But beyond these sentiments is the fact that what goes on the table is what grows the cells in our bodies, grows our hair and nails, forms our blood, feeds our children’s brains. What we feed our family effects their potential!
I like to think of the table as an alter. What kind of food would you put on your alter to offer up to your family as a sign of devotion? Something toxic? … fake (overly processed, packaged foods, chemical additives, dyes, artificial and “natural” flavors)? fast food? Would you put mediocre quality food on your alter… or the BEST?
In Hinduism there is a term called Ashirvad. It loosely translates to “receiving their blessing”. When a puja is performed an offering is given either to a deity or an important person and exchanged for that deity or person’s blessing. This offering can be many things, but is often food (prasad). Isn’t it lovely then to apply this ritual’s meaning to your family’s alter, the kitchen table?
Whatever prasad you put onto your family’s alter, you then receive your family’s blessing. Offer your family the best food you can, the healthiest food you can. Grow it or know its source intimately. Prepare it well. Infuse it with your love.
Set your table with colorful napkins, glasses of water, and flowers from your family’s yard or candles. It doesn’t have to be contrived or fancy. Say a prayer in whatever style suits your family.
Last night I made Bodhi and myself a Morning Crumble for this morning’s breakfast. It is included in the first picture of Bodhi at our table, so I thought I’d also include my recipe here! It is naturally sweet (ie: delicious), has healthy fats, and has plenty of protein and fiber to get us all to lunch.
Morning Blueberry Crumble
1/2 cup applesauce
1 cup + fresh or frozen blueberries, apples, peaches, or whatever other yummy fruit you have on hand
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 tablespoon molasses
1 cup rolled oats
1 cup almond meal
1/2 cup applesauce
1/4 cup warmed coconut oil or butter
In a small baking dish (or individual ramekins) put your filling ingredients in and fold them together until well mixed. Make sure that the berries or slices of fruit are evenly distributed. Then in a separate small bowl put all of the topping ingredients in and mix until it comes together much like oatmeal cookie dough. Sample. So good… Top your filling with it. Store in the fridge until the next morning or pop right into the oven. 350 degrees for about ten minutes for mine. Watch the topping… smaller baked goods burn easily. Also, if you are using frozen berries you may consider allowing them to thaw a bit before putting in the oven. You don’t want the berries to still be cold while your crumble has browned nicely. I solved this issue by putting mine in the fridge overnight. However, in the future I may take it out of the fridge and let it sit on the counter to warm up to room temp. before popping it in.
More of family meal time to be continued…