|BlueSky Business Aviation News|
Well, that’s not exactly true about it being 40 days. Those 40 days don’t include Sundays since they’re celebrated during this season as ‘little Easters’; so there are actually 46 days that pass from the first day of Lent, more properly known as Ash Wednesday.
The Tuesday before Ash Wednesday is Mardi Gras, which means ‘Fat Tuesday’. It’s called ‘Fat’ (or ‘Great’) because it's associated with great food and parties. You may know it as Shrove Tuesday - the day when pancakes are served - traditionally to use up butter and dairy produce before the ritual fast begins.
In many languages, the word ‘Lent’ actually means ‘fast’. This is where the custom of giving up something for Lent originated. Lent is not required anywhere in scriptures, but it has been a custom which Christians have practiced for most of the last two thousand years.
Some people have been known to go without food for days. But that's not the only way to fast. You can fast by cutting out some of the things in your life that distract you from God. Some Christians use the whole 40 days to fast from candy, TV, soft drinks, cigarettes or meat as a way to purify their bodies and lives. They might skip one meal a day. Today many people do not fast from food, but from other vices such as drinking, media, spending, to name but a few. Some give up an activity. Some take on a project to benefit society. They might collect food for the needy, volunteer once a week to tutor children, or work for reform and justice in their community. You must be wondering why this is of importance to you, as you plan meals for your flight crew and passengers? Well . . .
A Lenten Diet is religious in nature and regarded as a season of ‘spiritual housecleaning’ if you will; a period of self denial. A diet undertaken during Lent is intended to transform people physically and spiritually – not for weight loss. Typically all members over the age of 14 are asked to avoid eating meat on the Fridays during Lent. This is done to help demonstrate self denial and control materialism. Early on in the Catholic church, meat was a privilege. The term ‘meat’ does not include fish or seafood as it refers specifically to the flesh of warm blooded animals.
The Lenten Diet
The Lenten diet typically starts on Ash Wednesday and ends on either the Thursday or Saturday before the Easter holiday. Participants are forbidden from having meat on Fridays during Lent. Ash Wednesday is for fasting. On that day, one meatless meal is allowed. Not all meat is banned on Fridays with this diet. Anything that is a warm blooded animal is what has to be avoided.
Below are the types of foods you can have on Fridays:
A beautiful crisp flatbread pizza prepared with a white sauce and fresh wilted spinach and grilled chicken on the side can go either way. A classic lunch menu of mini five cheese and pesto sandwiches ordered with crisp bacon on the side served with a roasted tomato soup fits both options as well. Pasta and Marina can be ordered with chicken, fish or meat on the side.
The secret to providing a Lenten meal is to be prepared. Another pasta dish that can be converted to a meatless dish is Fettuccine and Broccoli Alfredo. Macaroni and Cheese with lobster on the side is an elegant and trending dish.
Consider ordering vegan or vegetarian dishes with sides of meat to cover the unexpected for the next 40 days.
Let me introduce myself . . .
My name is Paula Kraft and I am founder and President of Tastefully Yours Catering, an aviation specific caterer, located in Atlanta, Georgia for over 35 years.
Currently I am an active member of the NBAA Flight Attendant Committee Advisory Board and the NBAA International Flight Attendant Committee, Women in Corporate Aviation, Women in Aviation International, National Association of Catering Executives, International Flight Catering Association, the International Food Service Association and the International Caterer’s Association.
I have coordinated training programs and clinics for NBAA, EBAA and BA-Meetup conference attendees for over 10 years, created mentoring programs for caterers and flight attendants to broaden their aviation culinary skills, and to assist them in adapting to the unique challenges and constraints found in catering for general aviation. I recognize the need for training and have worked closely with flight departments, flight crews, schedulers and customer service reps at the FBOs to ensure that catering specific training provides information and skills necessary to reduce risk while assisting them in their job duties that include safe food handling, catering security, accurate transmission of food orders, and safe food production, packaging and delivery.
I fell into aviation catering quite by accident. I was the in-house caterer and bakery supplier for Macy’s department stores in Atlanta when catering was ordered for a Macy’s customer which was soon to change my life. After the client enjoyed the catering provided, I was summoned to the client’s corporate office to provide several of the items delivered through Macy’s to the executive dining room. Within a week, I was providing food for the flight department and my first order was for the President of a foreign country (as I was too be told soon after). So, here I am, some 35 years later, still loving every minute of every day in aviation catering.