I finally had some time to delve into a new cookbook that is so much more than a cookbook. Decolonize Your Diet, an offering by Luz Calvo and Catriona R .Esquivel, has inspired me to keep doing what I’m doing but armed with more knowledge and a deeper appreciation for the nutrient rich foods of our ancestors. Luz and Catriona reconnect us to ancestral foods that have helped our bodies and spirits thrive for hundreds, if not thousands of years. They remind us that we as a community, as a people, must continuously unearth and sustain our indigenous food ways because our physical, spiritual and mental health depends on it. The book is filled with creative vegan and vegetarian recipes, knowledge of long forgotten foods and history that isn’t taught in U.S history books.
It is an approach to food centered in community, healing, and in honoring Mother Earth and our indigenous heritage. This passage, in particular, really spoke to my heart and is why I’m so passionate about helping families shift their food culture from processed dead foods to whole nutrient rich foods.
Another mission of this book is to encourage individuals in our communities to use food in order to regain physical health and nurture a spiritual connection to themselves, each other and Mother Earth. When we say food is medicine, it is not because we think food can necessarily replace other conventional Western medical treatments but because eating real food is essential to healing. Many of us have become disconnected from this truth and, therefore, from our own bodies. (p. 17)
After reading every word, I was incredibly inspired and finally got to cooking. I was happy to find that the recipes were easy to follow and every one has been incredibly delicious and satisfying. After each dish I cooked and shared with my family, I felt a deeper nourishment, one of mind, body and soul. I am reminded that my work is important and that we must continue building and supporting food revolutions that connect all life. My New Years resolution, or more like my life resolution, is to continue building my knowledge of ancestral foods, increase my offering of these foods to my family and community, while honoring the spirit of our ancestors.
I highly recommend purchasing the book and opening up your kitchens and hearts to this offering.
Here are a few photos of some of the dishes I made from Decolonize Your Diet. I’ll continue to post more on my IG.