Ever felt a little bloated, over stuffed with indigestion, regretting sopping up the last bit of sauce with the crusty ciabatta bread?
While finishing off the bottle of wine before the desert comes to finish the grande meal?
Eating and drinking like a King and Queen in the midst of good lighting, fascinating company and the murmurs of the outside world far from your table is not a sin, for it is a blessing to anyone who can enjoy moments like those!
But did you know that it could all be aided with one more thing to digest? A Digestive!
The ancients have been brewing tonics and elixers to purify the belly from the woefull night of excess for centuries, and sometimes, in our modern world, we forget the secrets that have seemed to work for centuries.
Next time you feel the burps coming, along with the internal dialogue of "oh WHY did I eat all that?" Sit back, take a deep breath, ask for the drink list and keep your eye out for these options...
The French have Chartreuse, an infused herbal liqueur that has curative powers.
Central Europe has Eaux de vie, that can wake up any cranky belly.
Germany has herbal schnapps like Underberg (this is actually sold in drugstores)
Italy has Amari: bitter liquides derrived from quinine that are filled with herbs, roots, flowers, spices and alchohol, sometimes sweet and sometimes bitter as hell.
Cynar is made from artichokes, others use fermented green walnuts and black truffles. Fernet Branca is the most popular and also the most bitter of the amaris.
Campari, better known as an aperitif (before the meal) is best mixed with a little soda, lemon peel and oj if desired.
If none of these options are available at the bar you seem to be at, ask for the common, Bitters and Soda and all will be well!
Today, many new styles of drinks are being mixed with these bitter digestives, to add a bit of digestion, hearty taste, structure to the drink and fancy artistry- that the "Mixologists" are thoroughly getting off on.
So next time you are wining and dining, try a little digestif apres the meal and feel the difference!
With all the horrible images on the news about the devastating earthquake in Haiti... its hard to find answers! Answers like why did this happen and most importantly, WHAT CAN WE DO?
Here are 3 things you can do right now!
1. Keep your thoughts positive! The collective consciousness , how an entire community comes together to share similar values, is very powerful and we have work to do as healers, visionaries and brothers and sisters! Visualize healing, cooperation, medical recovery, families reuniting...Try not to let the horrors and heartbreaks into your mind, for that will only create more of that. Affirm the health, happiness and safety of the Haitians!
This is also a good time for gratitude and reflection. What we might be going through right now is nothing compared to the Haitian people. So lets use this opportunity to bring more appreciation into our lives, with our family, friends and loved ones and also send waves of healing energy to those in Haiti!!!
Have you ever wanted to straddle a wooden horse, eat on a leather drum and have your table cloth be your fork? if you answered YES to any of these questions then you need to head on over to an Ethiopian restaurant near you!
Having just moved to NYC from LA, I was sad to find only a few Ethiopian restaurants in the city. For in LA, there is an actual Little Ethiopia on Fairfax and Pico. Blocks and blocks of specialty shops selling all things Ethiopian...and the food...just delish!
In NYC, I happened to find a mouth watering Ethiopian restaurant on the Lower East Side: Meskel Ethiopian Restaurant. 199 E. 3rd st btween Ave A and B.
Cozy, cultural and clean! My 3 favorite things!
You must start with a warm sambusa; which is a fried dough stuffed with lentils or beef, very similar to the Indian Samosa. Then finish off with the traditional vegetarian plate! The table cloth ...HA HA HA...is really a sponge bread called Injera that you use to pick up your food with. The bread has a unique texture but a delicious flavor and has practically no gluten and is very good for you! Dip that injera into stewed beans, cabbages, spinach, peas, and everyother veggie imaginable- and with such spicy and savory flavors!
But the most important part is what quences your thirst!
Ehiopians have a famous wine they drink called, Tej. Refered through out the Holy Scriptures as "Mead", it is now bottled and produced in America from pure Honey and under the highest standards of quality using NO SULFITES! The brand I drank at the restaurant was amazing: ShebaTe'j.
Best served chilled, this wine has a perfect balance of sweet notes and a medium body wine that sure accentuates the flavors in the food.
Remember, before drinking the wine, give a great big Ethiopian Cheers and say, "Le Tenachin!" ("To Our Health")
Allah o Akbar! Yasu! Jesus Christ, son of G-d! Om Namah Shivaya!!!
All of these prayers can be said while rubbing your fingers on beads strung on a string. The only difference is a few materials, the amount of beads and the titles for G-D! But all in all, its a Universal Prayer bead to me!
In Islam they are called: Masbaha. They are used to perform the Dhiker where one can say phrases like, "Allah o Akbar" (G-d is great), "Subhanallah" (exalted in G-d), and "Alhumdulillah" (all the praise is for G-d).
The Masbaha is like an abacus that helps in memorizing verses of the Qur'an. There are usually 99 beads that represent the 99 names of G-d but there are also shorter strings that have about 33 beads.
Greeks call their worry beads; Komoloi. These have no religious significance but many of the beads are in the design of "The Eye"; a Blue, white and black eye that protects one from the Evil Eye.
In Christianity: the prayer beads are often called a Prayer Rope or Rosary (which means a garland of roses).
The Rosary is a Roman Catholic devotion that allows the person to repeat sequences of 'The Lords Prayer' and 'Hail Mary'.
Whereas the Prayer Rope is traditionally found in Eastern Orthodox communities. It is made from silk and other soft materials that are stung along in complex knots. Most have 100 knots and others come in rows of 50 and 33. There is usually a red tassel on the end and that symbolizes the blood of christ. jesus christo!
Mala beads are popular in Hinduism and Buddhism (and Los Angeles ;)
In Hinduism, the practice is called Japa Mala and there are 108 beads on a string. The 109th bead is called the Guru Bead and it signifies the time for the devotee to switch directions. In Hindu tradition, the index finger represents the ego; therefore its best to avoid that finger when chanting. One can chant many mantra's and holy names of G-d when praying with the Mala. A few examples would be: Om Nama Shivaya Om gam ganapataye namaha!
The Jewish religion does not have prayer beads but they do have the tallit. A blue and white silk shall with fringe, 5 knots and 4 tassels "so you will remember all the commandments of the Lord."
The Native Americans have always held much sacred significance in beads. Usually worn around the neck and attached to articles of clothing, these "little spirit seeds" were sometimes seen as gifts from G-d. On every string of beads, it is recommend to have a Spirit Bead- one that stands out from all the rest because of a unusual color or design, something that looks like a mistake. This is to remind us all that we are not perfect, only G-d is perfect.
African cultures have long prized beads and used them to communicate, acting as "love letters", the Zulu tribe manipulated the colors and patterns of beaded offerings to one's suitor in order to convey secret messages.
"Ambassador beads," were used to elicit the goodwill of the Divine in Rhodesia. Matabele chiefs gave beads to witch doctors as tribute to their god.
For the Yoruba, beads represent the qualities of spiritual wisdom, the power of the gods, and the gods themselves. They believe that using beads in ritual or on ritual objects will enhance their power. Diviners wear special bead necklaces that identify them as spiritual leaders and enhance their power.
Finally, the Masai find beads so meaningful to their culture that their language includes more than 40 words for different kinds of beadwork.
Beads around the world!!! Filled with religious and cultural significance, adorned with vibrant and healing colors, and sacred pebbles that hold the power for our own personal devotion. Its beautiful to live in a country where we can choose who we praise! For I choose to praise them all who praise love, unity and joy!!!
"We are born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us, it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” ~Marianne Williamson