Published on August 20, 2020
Many of us enjoy recipes that have been passed on from mothers, grandmothers, uncles, etc. These dishes are often the most delicious to our palates, and sometimes they come with a great story.
But we tend to forget that the importance of legacy is not just the content itself. It’s not just about the recipe; it’s about the way in which we communicate with one another. It’s about the fundamental principles that our parents teach us, that our grandparents teach us, that inform how we show up in the world. It’s about how we take care of our bodies and minds through food.
The tarragon chicken salad, the hearty chili, and the sesame noodles that my mom made for me growing up, which I now make, remind me that family togetherness was at the top of her hierarchy, every single day. They remind me of how she treated guests and strangers alike, offering them something cold to drink and something homemade to eat. My dad’s lentil soup reminds me of how much he respects my mom, how he’s always willing to make a meal or clean up when she can’t or needs a break.
The memories of scratch-made meals around the table every single night largely influenced my becoming a holistic chef. Not because they were always “healthy”, but because they heal. They improve our mental and emotional health, which I believe is sometimes more important (and informs) our physical health.
Cooking is a beautiful way to maintain a value system within a family from generation to generation. It helps create a family “ecosystem” of wellness in body and spirit, which then translates to how we exist outside of our home. I am incredibly grateful to have the opportunity to make, tweak, savor, share, and, one day, pass on our recipes.
We hope you and your family will enjoy the free recipes found inside.
Photo of Chef Laura Lea by: Anna Haas Creative