It's been a while since I posted a photo for the "Gourmet Initiative" files. But yesterday I made this exceptional Pasta Primavera, with grilled chicken, and the dish was begging for some face-time on my blog!
Any time - at least this is my theory - the cooking involves garlic, asparagus, spinach, sun-dried tomatoes and two varieties of mushroom that I can't even pronounce, the result is pretty-much guaranteed awesome. I won't detail the process, because the ingredients list is very, very long. But the result, served with an Italian Chianti, was more than satisfactory.
Well worth the effort:
I wasn't even thinking about yesterday's meal this morning, until Rebekah and I ran across a pathetic news segment just a few minutes ago. The story featured a "Divorce Ceremony." The couple gathered with friends, smashed their rings with a wooden mallet, then sat back-to-back at separate tables during the reception.
"It's like a wedding ceremony," the reporter said, "only with a different outcome."
"I feel free," the (former) groom said. "After I smashed the ring I feel free."
The party favors, the story concluded, are chopsticks. "Because they are easily pulled apart."
I can't help but wonder if this marriage had any ongoing commitment to being a gourmet relationship? Or had the union been too much trouble from the outset to take that seriously?
- People who chose a diet of fast-food, soda, sugar fixes, snack-food, heavy desserts and junk-food become overweight, undernourished and generally unhealthy.
- Likewise, a marriage unwilling to invest the time and the creativity to cultivate a balanced, healthy relationship lifestyle is likely to end up in the emergency room or the morgue.
The idea I've been floating - An ongoing "Gourmet Initiative" - is designed to target every aspect of our lives. Spiritual, physical, mental health, our relationships, work, recreation... you name it.
The principles of:
- The best possible ingredients
- Care in preparation
- A commitment to excellence
- Serving (with delight)
- Giving thanks...
These all may have their genesis in the idea of gourmet cooking - but they (and we have discussed this already) apply to our lives of faith and - by natural extension - to our relationships too.
Rebekah and I have been married, with varying degrees of, but steadily increasing, happiness for over thirty-one years because we are always learning, always tweaking the ingredients, always faithful to our promises, always committed to adding flavor, always serving one-another, always celebrating, always giving thanks.
It's not the divorce industry that needs additional creativity and an influx of ideas... It's the marriage part of the equation. If only we could encourage more gourmet marriages, more initiatives of faithfulness and more self-giving service.
Faithfully - DEREK