Thursday, April 09, 2009

The sacred cellophane lamb

"It's blessed and everything."

That was Jim, explaining this Christian aberration he brought home from Kalinowski's, a famous Polish deli on the northwest side of Chicago.

He goes there a few times each year to bring home Polish sausage for holiday meals at his mom's.

It took some getting used to.

The scary lamb cake sitting on your counter?

Well that, and the idea of having Polish sausage with every holiday meal.

Easter, it's ham and Polish sausage. Christmas, it's roast beast and Polish sausage.

Seriously. It's one of the great religious mysteries - why we always get Polish sausage as Satan's side dish on holidays.

Does your family do anything like this?

Feel free to use Mary's little masochistic lamb as a reference point on the whole odd/ethnic continuum of holiday food traditions.
I know, I know.

The lamb is symbolic of Christ, who was sacrificed for our sins yadda yadda yadda.

Here's one of the more succinct explanations of the Christian conundrum I've found, posted by someone named Fifthhorseman on the news site Fark:

Why Christianity is the essence of irony:

Jesus: Hey guys, great news! You don't need a church or a priest to be tight with God. You just need to be a good person and perform good acts. You don't need faith!

Paul & Co: Awesome! Let's create a church to spread the new faith!

Jesus: *facepalm*
Here's another Easter tradition: Jim and I watch The Ten Commandments.


Moses in the mud and Edward Where's-Yer-Moses-Now G. Robinson and a pre-Bo John Derek and a wily half-naked Yul and that whore Ann Baxter and Mrs. Munster.

It has nothing to do with Jesus or Easter. Yet we watch it, in all its epic-y goodness.

It's nearly four hours long. So over the course of the two or three days it takes to watch, all major household decisions are finalized with "So let it be written, so let it be done!"

And we pepper our conversations with random, grandiose statements like:

"Blood makes poor mortar!"

"God made men. Men made slaves!"

"Love cannot drown truth."

Plus I wander around the house in silk robes purring "OHhhhh, MOSES!"

It's true. Really.
It's hard to put my finger on what bothers me about the lamb cake. Maybe it's because I would need something like 2,000 fingers.

But mostly it's because I'm not big into Christ-related food items like lambs and whathaveyou.

Because when cuddly-wuddly Christ makes his much-anticipated comeback, I would NOT want to be caught dead munching on a chocolate crucifix.

I am listening to: The Ten Commandments
I am reading: Nothing, really
And I am: Thinking of ways to slaughter the cellophane lamb


Susan's Snippets said...

Hedy The Lamb Slayer...

I was raised Catholic in a home where Easter dinner almost always consisted of a WHOLE leg of lamb…which, of course, I hated.

My Dad would carefully season and prepare the lamb leg prior to roasting it.

I can vividly remember it coming out of the oven and my Dad slicing into it.

I was is it that for Easter, where we celebrate the Risen Lamb, we find it appropriate to cut off their legs and feast on them?

I refused to eat it.

Instead, I filled up on side dishes of mashed potatoes, corn and the ever present-buttered-by-my-Momma bread.

why are lambs legs shed

Anonymous said...

Chocolate crucifix... wow... there's a special place in hell called Wonkaville, for those capitalists. Too funny!
Also, in the Ten Commandments Moses is carrying down the tablets from the mountain... and the other guy comes up to get him and they stand there while the people make raucous noise while they sin and party down below. And the one guy says to Moses something like, "those are the sounds of war" and Moses says in complete disgust "those aren’t the sounds of war... those are the sounds of SONG and REVELRY." As if song and revelry were somehow worse than war... it’s priceless and most people miss it.
That said, Jesus was a worthy roll model... even for an atheist.

miss kitty said...

Grommie finally made a funny...

"Jesus was a worthy 'roll' model.."

Yes, he certainly was and it most definitely a Kaiser.

Grommie have a meowtiful Easter!

Miss "always will be smarter" Kitty

Dave said...

I always wait for cuddly wuddly, don't make me wait all the way to another religious holiday.

Bad holiday food: jello, in any salad incarnation. On second thought, any jello.

Worst holiday food: cranberry sauce from a can, with the can marks, shimmying on a plate.


is that lamb a pound cake, butter mold or sausage mold?

We always have to have the Easter lamb cake pound cake..and we fight over who gets stuck with the head of the lamb versus the ass.
and now Easter and PASSOVER IS MERGED.

I've learned to make EASTER more like the PASSOVER SEDAR..meaningful, and religious with family and traditions and sacrifice.

Both holidays have the kids searching for stuff: EASTER EGGS and MATZOH.


Anonymous said...

Like lambs to the slaughter... and silence of the lambs... I've got my baked-last-night lamb cake wrapped in saran and in the freezer, waiting to be frosted. My 6yr old son requested a "boy" lamb, so I'm pondering ways to butch it up. It may be a black sheep. I didn't remember that the lamb symbolized Jesus. I was thinking it was just another fertility symbol with the chicks and bunnies.

Posol'stvo the Medved said...

Hmmm. Although I understand the whole lamb / Jesus connection, I never thought about it in conjunction with eating lamb or lamb cake till now.

Thanks for that.

The only holiday food tradition we have is the ham, blackeyed peas, and cabbage on January 1... We have a lamb cake mold that we have used on Easters in the past, but getting the cake out of the mold without beheading the lamb has proven too difficult.