Ask most Americans to name a food they associate with “freedom,” and you’ll hear about barbecue or hot dogs on the Fourth of July.
Some may ponder the question more deeply and might mention Thanksgiving dinner. After all, Norman Rockwell’s title for his famous Thanksgiving dinner was “Freedom from Want,” a painting he finished in 1942 and then was widely published in 1943 at a time when millions of Americans were anxious about loved ones fighting in World War II.
The truth is, you can unlock a whole world of freedom-themed food stories by using the newest study guide to United America, called “Taste of Home.”
Consider this: When Bastille Day (the commemoration of the French Revolution) rolls around on July 14, use Google News to check on French communities across the United States. You’ll likely find more than a dozen stories about French-American celebrations that include French foods.
Let’s travel further around the planet: Coming in May 2018 is the centennial of independence for the Republic of Georgia. Know someone who migrated from Tibilisi? In May, you might find them enjoying Khinkali, the Georgian national dumpling, or perhaps Churchkhela, candle-shaped snacks made of grapes and nuts, to remember their homeland.
In Muslim communities, Eid al-Adha (sometimes called the “Greater Eid,” or “greater celebration,” in English) is marked with a lamb entrée at the family feast. The holiday is the culmination of the Hajj, or annual pilgrimage to Mecca, and recalls God’s ancient covenant with Abraham. Thankfulness for religious freedom is one of the themes in the multi-layered Islamic traditions around the Hajj and the Eid.
Perhaps the most famous freedom meal, around the world, is the Jewish Passover Seder, which is eaten along with lengthy readings and songs recalling the ancient story of the Exodus from Egypt. You’ll find lots of stories about the values we associate with food in Bobbie Lewis’s weekly FeedTheSpirit column within ReadTheSpirit magazine. Here’s a story Bobbie wrote about the Passover Seder.
What foods do you associate with freedom?
Your Story Matters!
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