Growing-up in a family where the closest women of my life (my mom, my aunt Nicole, and above all my cherished 'Mamie Rose') were amazing cooks; when I got married , one of my 'secret fear' was to be able to put together great meals in special occasions, for my 'culinary expert' guests.
Back then, aside from baking, I'd never cooked anything really elaborate in my life - though, I did spend lots of time around these wonderful women as they were preparing feast, from entrees to deserts like true troopers in the kitchen.
Now, do you think all these years "marinating" in their light, would be helpful?
Actually, it was quietly the opposite.
When my turn came to pursue this 'tradition' as a great hostess, I felt even more pressured and scared than most novice in that position.
'Ego', always hovering around, was certainly one trigger for this feeling,
although at heart, it was the desire to bring joy to my guests through a good meal and a warm environment that motivated me/made me scared all along.
As I was facing this 'emotional challenge', quotes such as:"Practice makes perfect and what matters the most is to try!" helped me some, but here comes the deeper teaching from this experience, and 'The Special Ingredient', I discovered to make each of my recipe a succulent dish.
I realized that the same way, I had learned to 'remove myself' from the picture, to become a conduit while delivering messages, the same I must do in the kitchen!
Therefore, each time 'I jumped' into my apron, I made sure to keep it simple, to trust my gut feelings, and most importantly to cook from my heart and soul.
While standing in front of my counter, to awaken I will sing some of my favorite "canticles' and "meditations" to the food, hoping that some of the most delectable flavors from heaven will season my dish.
Then... guess what?
Though, I was always nervous before starting to cook, my prayers were answered, and each time, the response from my guests was unanimously one of joy.
Truth be told, it took me years to feel at ease, when cooking for many. (If I ever completely did)
However, I learned to have a total certainty that 'The Light Force' will always stand by my side, as strongly as the spirit of my grandmother did.
So much indeed, that after years of cooking, I even got to tackle recipes beyond my comfort zone: Middle Eastern, French, Indian, Asian ...You name it! If I, or a love one likes it: I'll try to make it!
Now, I know that the 'Recipe for Success',(in the kitchen or anywhere else) must start with a desire to share, flavored with an aroma of love, and will end with a delectable fulfillment of Light.
Wishing you all, an amazing holiday season, in great company, sharing delicious 'heavenly"meals...
Love & Light Always, Ilanit.