During my trip to Alaska, I got a chance to read a very unusual recipe for blueberry pie by a woman named Fanny Quigley. Here’s a photo of it:
When I first read it, I laughed. Who would follow a recipe like this?
But when I thought more about it, I realized that this recipe encourages mindful eating. Or at least it does to me.
Part of what I love about mindful eating is the opportunity to think about where our food comes from, and to be grateful for it. Most of the time, it’s all too easy to forget the reality of everything that went into our food.
I’m not a farmer, or a gardener, or a butcher, or involved in food transportation. Unless I’m mindful, I don’t consider all the people involved in preparing the elements of my food, how far it’s traveled to get to me, how it’s refrigerated and kept cold (and it’s not from permafrost!).
In fact, if I were to attempt a similar recipe, it wouldn’t look anything like this, apart from picking blueberries. I go to the grocery store to get shortening and salt and butter. I order gluten-free flour and xanthan gum from Amazon – I don’t even know how xanthan gum is processed. I keep things cold in the fridge, and I use my electric oven to bake. I can’t tell you much about how either of them works, except in very basic terms.
And I realize that while Fanny’s recipe amuses and amazes me, my own process would likely baffle her.
So today I’m more grateful than ever that I don’t have to kill a bear and render its fat for lard, or drive a dog team over 100 miles to get what I need for blueberry pie.
I’m also very grateful for all the people, and animals who work to grow, harvest, process, package, and transport all the things I use. It makes me appreciate my pies – and other goodies – that much more.