TogethernessSubmitted by Christina Leithoff on Sun, 04/10/2016 - 5:37pm
Food, for the longest of times, has brought people together, whether two people are just meeting for coffee, or friends are going out to lunch or dinner. Family dinners spent at the table instead of in front of the TV or computer, birthday parties full of food and sweets, BBQs at a family friend’s house that has a pool, 4th of July on your uncle’s farm, accidently setting fire to the field across from his house (and this is why we keep a bucket of water handy, folks), so many different ways that food brings people together. People with different cultural backgrounds can come together over the table and share a meal now more than ever.
For example, during homecoming week, my friends in the Creative Claws club were faced with the task of preparing a dish with the secret ingredient provided. I feel like it brought us five that were there closer together in our friendships. First there was the (what seemed longer than it actually was) ride to Winfield, going shopping for ingredients, then actually working as a group to put together the dish and suffering through someone’s need to be in charge, because we all have a little bossy pants inside of us somewhere. All in all, it was a lot of fun, because we all pulled in together to make something for other people to enjoy.
Thanksgiving and Christmas are usually the times that family gather the most, but I personally haven’t seen much of my extended family on my mother’s side since my grandma’s funeral. I know that’s sad to say, but it’s the truth. Holidays that once were surrounded by people eating some of the most delicious food that I’ve ever had (turkey/ham, homemade bread, stuffing, mashed potatoes, gravy, candied sweet potatoes, etc.).
Another short snippet of Christmas and Thanksgiving at my house is that the night before we would always make the pies so they could be even better for the next day. We’d put in the turkey in and let it slow cook overnight. The next day would be hectic. In between making breakfast and lunch, and actually making things for the dinner with the 30 plus people who would show up later that night to hang out and watch football. We’d have mashed potatoes, candied sweet potatoes, turkey, ham, homemade bread, corn, green beans, but not green bean casserole because that’s nasty, cranberry sauce, stuffing, more potatoes, more stuffing, laughs and too much food. But let’s be honest, who doesn’t love food? Especially Thanksgiving and Christmas food. Plus all the Christmas candy.
Let me tell you about the Christmas candy. My grandma and I make cake balls, peppermint bark, peanut brittle, peanut clusters, haystacks, chocolate covered pretzels, and jelly. Along-side all the candy, my uncle would make tons of cookies. Cookies like gingersnaps, walnut pumpkin cookies, sugar, and my favorite is peanut butter cookies. The cookies are so yummy and soft and moist and so peanut buttery… I wish I had one right now, but I ate them all in two days. His sugar cookies are alright, but I’m not a big fan of sugar cookies. It’s nothing against him, just against sugar cookies. Something about them… They’re just too dry. I’m sorry I’m getting off track.
ANYWAYS! Food can be a beautiful thing that brings people together.