Mar 01 2013
It was the best dinner I have cooked in a very long time. Perhaps it tasted extra good because I shared it with a dear friend who had just flown in for a visit. Certainly part of the yum factor was cooking it with her, a friend who I have laughed with, cried with, prayed with, and just plain love being friends with. A friend who shows me God’s love by loving me just the way I am. But let me tell you about the recipe. Thanks to my current issue of Food & Wine, I read about a Jean George Vongerichten recipe from 2007.
Jean-Georges Vongerichten cleverly rethinks a classic Southeast Asian sauce not by what he adds, but by what he leaves out. Instead of a rich curry paste, he creates a creamy sauce with a caramel base, coconut milk and fish sauce.
The serious yum factor that had us literally moaning with pleasure in the first few bites came from what was left out. What was left out.
As I reflect on Lent and leaving out, I think there is something different between giving up and leaving out. Giving up is about the thing being given up. Chocolate is given up for Lent to help understand what Christ gave up for us. This may increase someone’s faith and understanding, but never has it worked for me.
Leaving out is more about what (or who!) is left behind than the thing that was left out. Jean George left out the curry and got a scrumptiously delicious Spiced Chicken with Coconut Caramel Sauce. As I try to leave out anger this Lent, what God gets is a richer, simpler me where He can work His ways into the space left behind.