In Full Moon Feast; Food and the Hunger for Connection, Jessica Prentice follows the thirteen lunar cycles of an agrarian year as she reflects on traditional world cuisine rooted in seasonality. Well-researched, poetical and historical, this cookbook helps reveal how the pace and processing technologies of our lives have come to disconnect us from the organic pulse of the natural world.
Prentice, who has been the Chef of the Headlands Center for the Arts, Director of Education Programs for CUESA, founder of the organization Wise Food Ways, and co-founder of the Locavores, has both a historical and mythopoetic understanding of the culinary arts. In each chapter she also offers up simple and seasonal recipes ranging from Spring Tonic Nettle Soup in the “Egg Moon” chapter, to Sourdough Pancakes in the “Snow Moon” chapter.
Prentice also thoughtfully chronicles her evolving understanding of carnivorism highlighting the distinction she found in the Greek origins of our Eglish words for life. She points to the distinction between the word Zoe, or life in its largest self-consuming sense, and Bios, which is a more individual and transient expression.
“When you see everything around you (animal, vegetable, mineral) as imbued with spirit,” writes Prentice, “as alive and sentient, as carrying with it a crucial part of the whole; when you view all life as inextricably interconnected by a thread, a spark, of something divine; you understand that this great beautiful creation involves death and decay just as certainly as it involves birth and resurrection.”