I stare out the window of my apartment at bright green leaves of the Greenbelt.  I think of how I have always wanted to change the world.

How can I do that with Le Creuset (which I don’t actually own, but stick with the theory here, eh?) and a $20 whisk (which I do, now, own)??  I am blessed with creativity for sure, but today it crosses my mind that I may be blessed more highly with idealism and shortsightedness.  Some people who know me have also deemed this combination Stubborn As A Mule. I cannot argue this.  The truth of my likeness to this animal has nearly been caught in photographs it is so true.  With this being divulged to you, let us return to the original question.

Why do I think I can save the world with a casserole dish, a stainless-steel pan, and a $20 whisk?

My Stubborn As A Mule instinct says to tell you, “Because I CAN.”  But that would be rude, and you may never return to read me again.  If you leave me, I will cry for years, I am already attached to the rise in my pulse when I see that people are actually reading and, hopefully, you will be cooking soon under my tutelage. So allow Chef Mule to explain to you how we, my dear army of cooks, will radically change the world for the better.

heartrock-1

Cooking is the way to the Heart

The heart heals all.

The way to anyone’s heart is through their stomach. I rationalize this partly through my belief in evolutionary behaviorism psychology.  Before I understood that this is largely the type of psychologist I am (or will become when I graduate), I was validating behaviors by both children and adults alike in patterns of behavior among different apes and mammals.

The fine line between enjoyment and addiction

For we mammals, food begins the bonding to our mothers.  Food=breast=mother. NONE of these things can be separated for the infant.  The desire to nurse is as much about a desire for closeness as it is about hunger.   We develop the same hormone releases when we experience good satisfying food as when we feel the skin of someone we adore.  These correlations will continue our entire lives.  This is why food addiction is a deep issue for all of us, it is primal.  To not get what you need in the way of bonding or intimacy can, hormonally, be found in enjoying food.

Let’s back away from negative issues though

and look at healing ourselves and our communities with food.

0917091424-1You start reading every day about this crazy good stuff I am making here in my small apartment in Austin, Texas.  You see that cooking is not just for dowdy chicks and middle age men.  You may cook sometimes, and you may cook well, but do you put yourself into it like an artist?  Do you laugh at yourself? Do you invite people over to help, or just to even watch and talk?  Do you take food to your neighbors, or do you think they would think you are weird?

Preparing food with mindfulness (not even like *buddha* mindfulness, just the idea that you want to please someone and yourself by the time you are done), sharing it (both triumphs and those meals where you trash it and go get a latte instead), going slow enough at the table to revere natural flavors, and staying in touch with the seasons on your cutting board… THIS can heal us all.  You don’t have to be the one cooking either. You can be the eater.  The eater has a special role, as there are often more eaters than chefs at any party.  You eaters are the ones that we cannot live without.  The look on your face, the small or loud noices from deep within your chest as you consume and feel what we meant when we made it… you are the soil and sunlight to our most hallowed crops.  You are the ones willing to take a chance with us at your helm.

“Preparing food with mindfulness , sharing it, going slow enough at the table to revere natural flavors, and staying in touch with the seasons on your cutting board… THIS can heal us all.”

0917091553

The kitchen is a place of service to others.  There are many chefs that aspire to greatness because it is like being a rock star, it is like having a hold on a society’s wants and desires to be a top-notch chef.  But these are not chefs to me, they are rock stars who ended up with a pallet instead of a voice.  Let’s repeat, the kitchen is a place of service.  It is where we dream of making someone else feel good.  It is where we pay attention to what hurts and what uplifts. It is where we think grandly of making love to the whole world with one bowl of soup, one seared tuna steak rare, or one perfect sauce.  The warm glow is addictive, the smells intoxicating, the labor a fine-tuned dance, and the end result… both art and service.

It is about radical change.  Bringing communities together.  Providing experiences for others and sharing experiences with others.  I love to go out to eat.  I love it like some people love to go shoe shopping.  Experiencing someone else’s ideas about comination and presentation is like seeing a good movie.  However, going out to eat is not going to further this idea on community. Having dinners where things are locally grown (if possible), where a friend or acquaintance cooked for you, where there is dramatically less waste generated that in a restaurant, where your take-home boxes had better be reusable containers, where people sit around on the couch afterward and make plans for revolution of any kind… THIS IS WHERE IT’S AT.

I am not interested in inspiring you to cook what I am making.  I am very interested in inspiring you to feel the way I do about the importance of food.  To know and understand it for both it’s base value, and the value it can hold creating a different kind of place to live.  I am a complete food snob. I also work on a budget most of the time and cut corners or make things faster, because there are three kids to feed.

I am interested in your energy, in you being in the kitchen and your heart soaring out of it’s cage, your mind feeling clear and agile, your body relaxing and your self-love mounting a great steed and taking off with you on it.  This is your task at hand and it must be done…

because you have been recruited to save us all.

banquet

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3 Responses to “Saving the Whole World”


  1. 1 River September 27, 2009 at 11:16 pm

    I must agree,most do not even notice the feeling that comes over them when they are enjoying a great meal. Be it with friends or alone the warm positive energy that fills your spirit when consuming a good meal is sometimes the best therapy. Imagine- your friend has called and just ended a relationship,they need you. Instead of meeting over coffee or drinks you chose their empowering meal,for me this would be sushi or an italian restaurant with a good artichoke dip. The energy is different, if you can get them to relax and let the comfort of the meal fill them,they usually realize as unfortunate as the situation is the dark feelings do not need to win,find your strength and sometimes the damn good dip becomes the topic for a while and hey that’s a start. If we are what we eat does it not answer the question,what happened to the world? When there is a fast food chain in almost every country and items we can not pronounce in even the basic foods bought off the shelf. If you know to make it, it only takes four things but it list 20 and you need a dictionary to define 15 don’t buy it, make it! it will taste better and feel better. Sorry for the rant,thanks for the topic,as I said I agree.

    • 2 River September 27, 2009 at 11:55 pm

      if we are what we eat does it not answer the question,what happened to the world? When there is a fast food chain in almost every country and items we can not pronounce in even the basic foods bought off the shelf. If you know to make it, it only takes four things but it list 20 and you need a dictionary to define 15 don’t buy it, make it! it will taste better and feel better. (shorter version)

  2. 3 courtneyhensleekresha April 9, 2010 at 9:13 pm

    River, how have i never responded to you on this? I am so sorry, my friend. you know what i am talking about and i so appreciate it. Thank you.


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Courtney Henslee-Kresha

38 year old mother of three daughters. Courtney is witty, truthful, daring, and sexy. She now resides in Denver, Colorado. Her youth was spent in both Houston and the Texas Hill Country. This lends her raw Texas appeal alongside intense intelligence. For three years, she produced and hosted a popular show on KPFT called WholeMother where her following ranged from young alternative mothers to cowboys looking for wit and a mothering voice. From street smart to rural smart, she drives like a maniac and writes with a passion.

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