So, it’s Lent again. Is it that time of the year when you think you have to give something up? Not in our book.
Catholics around the world look to Lent as a time of purification: a time to reflect on habits, whether good or bad. Historically, Catholics were expected to give up everything that distracted them from contemplating Christ and his arrival at Easter, and atone for their past sins.
Sex was especially considered taboo, as sex as a thought, word, or deed was considered impure. Anything that made you think about sex was off limits too. Foods were proscribed by the church to be either a “heating” or “cooling” food. “Hot” foods, such as red meat and spices supposedly inspired passion, lust, and lead to…well, you know.
“Cool” foods such as veggies, beans and fruit were supposed to keep your lust level down. Since fish is cold blooded, it was considered a “cool” food and okay to eat. Even though times have changed, and many of the stricter fasting rules have been dismissed by the Church, fish on Friday during Lent is still a popular tradition for many.
If your family stays true to the fish on Friday tradition during Lent, you might decide to host a fish fry. If you are reluctant to fry fish in the house, you can always set up a frying station on the patio outdoors. A small electric skillet or fryer is a great choice, as most have a built in thermostat and can keep the temperature of the cooking oil regulated. Fry the fish in advance of your dinner, and keep it warm in the oven before serving. Tortas de pescado or fish sandwiches keeps the meal casual and fun, and is great for family night at home.