My Kitchen Angel
By Meadow Linn
I was the weird
kid in elementary school whose lunch bag had brown rice and vegetables instead
of pizza. I took my own tofu ice cream to birthday parties and drank water
instead of soda. When other kids were watching music videos on MTV, I was more
likely looking for fairies in the garden or learning to cook a new dish. My
childhood was wonderful, but it was not typical by any stretch of the
One of the
advantages, however, of growing up ďweirdĒ is that it allows for the
possibility of magic. While walking in an urban park with my mom when I was a
young child, I was transfixed by something Iíd seen on a nearby bench.
Although my mom
couldnít see what Iíd seen, she allowed me anyway to run through the grass to
get a closer look. Sitting on the bench, I found what Iíd been looking for. It
was an angel. A real one. Since I was a little girl
and the veil between this world and the Divine was still thin, I was able to
meet my angel, even though the other people in the park couldnít see him.
From where I
was standing, slightly behind a tree, I could see the angel was intently
focused on something. My angel wasÖ eating! Typically, religious iconography
doesnít depict angels doing worldly things like enjoying a meal, and Iíve never
heard stories of angel encounters involving food, but this angel was most
certainly having an afternoon snack.
As I have been
passionate about food and cooking my entire life, it seems fitting that the one
time Iíve seen an angelic being, he was eating.
as I got older, not only did I lose the ability to see angels, but I also
stopped believing in their existence. I spent many years trying to fit in and
be ďnormalĒ and as a result, I lost the openness that allowed me to see the
angel in the first place. Instead, I shopped at the Gap, wore polo shirts and
penny loafers, and eschewed anything that didnít seem to fit with the ďnorm.Ē
Confessing that my family was weird and owning our differences seemed like a
surefire route to non-acceptance at school, so I became like everyone else and
even began to question if I really had seen an angel.
The one thing
that has remained constant throughout my entire life, however, is my love of
food. I wonder if the angel eating in the park was somehow a harbinger of what
was to come.
When I was 18
years old, I began catering my momís summer workshops and retreats and have
been doing so ever since. Thereís quite a bit of thought, skill, and even luck
that go into providing healthy and delicious multi-course meals, three times a
day, for up to 14 days in a row to a large number of people.
Over the years,
Iíve weathered a few mishaps in the kitchen, but mostly Iíve been extremely
lucky. To explain my good fortune and seeming dumb luck, a few years ago,
half-jokingly I started to say that I had a Kitchen Angel guiding me. At first
it seemed just like one of those things you say, but then I remembered the
angel Iíd seen as a child. I realized that I did, indeed, have a Kitchen Angel.
My angel guides
my hand and gently nudges me toward the correct amount of seasonings, the best
cooking temperatures, and the most delicious flavor combinations. Iíve
discovered that he seems to be most present when Iím cooking for groups, as
though he knows that whatever happens when Iím cooking at home will be okay,
but I really need his divine guidance when I have large numbers of people
counting on me to provide them with sustenance.
A few months
ago I had an experience that cemented my belief in my Kitchen Angel. The menu
Iíd planned for that evening was extremely ambitious. Iíd planned a five-course
authentic Vietnamese meal for 25 people and had only two hours to do it.
Perhaps a bit crazy, but I was just so excited and inspired by the sweet,
salty, and fresh flavors of Southeast Asia that I wanted to share as many
dishes as possible with the guests at our retreat. With only 30 minutes until
the group would be arriving for dinner, I was still washing rice, peeling
winter squash for a curry, and grating vegetables for a salad.
work better and feel more inspired when my workspace is tidy, but the kitchen
was a mess. There were piles of food and stacks of dishes everywhere. As the
heat began to rise in the kitchen, and I was beginning to feel increasingly
frazzled, I remembered my Kitchen Angel. Although Iíd never done this before, I
decided to consciously ask for his help. Within minutes of requesting
assistance and expressing gratitude for all the other times he had quietly
aided me, the most remarkable thing happened.
I continued to
chop, slice, and stir, but the clock stopped moving. Even now as I write this,
Iím thinking this sounds absurd, but thatís what happened. What had been heaps of raw vegetables just moments before was now
simmering on the stove in a delicious coconut curry, and the rice was happily
steaming in the rice maker. Only after I was able to return a bit of order to
the kitchen did the clock once again start ticking. The meal wasnít yet
finished, but it was starting to look like I might actually be able to pull it
off. With just 10 minutes before the dinner bell and still work to be done, a
number of workshop participants showed up and offered to help. With their
assistance, we were able to get everything completed and on the table on timeÖ
and the meal was delicious.
It felt as
though my Kitchen Angel was present in his divine form, but also I think he may
have had a hand in the arrival of the human kitchen angels as well. It was such
a joy (and a great help) to have the seminar participants volunteer to help
during those final crucial minutes. Although part of me remains skeptical and
wonders whether a clock can really stop moving, thereís another part of me ó
the same part that saw my angel as a child ó that knows that magic and divinity
are everywhere when we take time to open our hearts and walk in gratitude for
all the magic that surrounds us every day.
If you are
interested in inviting a Kitchen Angel into your life and into your cooking
space, you can read about how to do this in my new book that I co-authored with
my mom, Denise Linn, international healer and past-life expert. Visit:(http://www.The MysticCookbook.com)
and sign up for our newsletter to receive a free download of a meditation to
meet your Kitchen Angel.
believes the life of your dreams is only a meal away. The more you savor the
seemingly small moments each day, the more you savor your life. She is the
co-author of The Mystic Cookbook (Hay House, November 2012) and creator of
Savor the Day, a delicious blog filled with personal stories, beautiful photos,
& scrumptious recipes. To find out more, visit www.meadowlinn.com