Focus on the People
As the holidays are upon us once again, it’s time to start planning for gatherings of family and friends—as we have done for generations.
Today’s hosts and hostesses benefit from conveniences like food processors and robot vacuums. Yet the technologies that make our lives easier also bring new challenges, like getting people to swap screen time for family time.
How can we get people back to the table? How can we promote conversation, connection and togetherness?
Focus on people
My new favorite book is The Kinfolk Table, brought to us by the people behind the Kinfolk magazine and website (kinfolk.com).
It’s a cookbook, but not in the traditional sense. It’s about bringing people back to the table and about the relationships and sense of community that surround cooking and sharing meals.
The book features recipes from people in a variety of geographical locations. From its introduction: “Each person was asked to contribute because he or she lives a life consistent with the simplicity we try to promote in our magazine, embodying a balanced, intentional way of living and a genuine appreciate of food and hosting friends in their homes.”
Setting a table that reflects simplicity, balance and sharing helps those values flourish.
Inspiration from The Kinfolk Table
• “A meal can be much more fulfilling when its preparation involves the friends who plan to sit down at the table.”
• The book includes recipes from people… “who espouse a humble, down-to-earth way of entertaining that emphasizes nothing more than togetherness.”
• “We all enjoy helping out, and the personal investment of contributing to a meal, even just tossing the salad, usually helps us enjoy the food even more.”
• “Entertaining looks different for all of us, but as long as we’re cooking and inviting people into our homes with a genuine interest in sharing experiences, conversing and eating together, then the way we do these things becomes insignificant and ultimately comes naturally. A burned dish or a missing serving piece becomes trivial. The humble soup or homely bread becomes a feast. It all seems quite simple.”