Together, we host Tarot by the Mouthful: a mouthwatering, multi-media culinary tour through the world of Tarot.
Sublime recipes. Soulful stories. Essays, videos, interviews and delicious surprises.
Join us every Sunday for a new installment — and get ready to sip, slurp, crunch and savor your way through the entire Tarot deck!
This week: Ace of Cups
Ace of Cups: A new emotional beginning. The first blush of love. An offer of love. Engagement. Opening the heart. My cup runneth over. The Ace of Cups symbolizes the dawning of a new emotional cycle or creative venture. Birth. Creation. Love begins in earnest; the early stages of a relationship.
Kyle – The cup runneth
In the early seasons of Wisconsin Foodie, as a result of the show and other work I had been pursuing, I found myself becoming friends with a great many of the chefs in my city. Earnest friendships, I marinated in their perspectives of the history, hierarchy and genres of cookery, and I grew in my ability to give their own particular stories a voice.
It was an exciting time. The new restaurant patchwork that was spreading across the city was one of the newer groups of chefs that were cooking more on their terms than at any other point in the city’s history. In concert with the thrust happening all over the country, it would eventually come to be called “chef-driven” cuisine, and my city’s chefs had that momentum on their side.
What they didn’t have, in the early stages of this culinary update, was each other. As I soaked in our conversations, their opinions, paradigms, backgrounds and dreams, the paucity of their associations with each other became apparent. I wanted them to drink together, cook together, spur one another on, feel the competitive heat and the convivial warmth, the camaraderie and contestable moments, which a true scene can foster.
What pushed them into more of a cohort then an erstwhile assemblage across the city’s kitchens was a dinner in December of 2012, which seamed together local ingredients and some of the scene’s more prescient chefs. The event brought most of them together for the first time. The dinner was grand, and the contributing chefs coalesced into a something more than the sum of their parts. They finished each other’s dishes, swapped ideas and techniques, meshed and moved, and the conversations and connections I had yearned for (which would raise the city’s overall caliber of cuisine) began.
That evening, from a dining room seat that afforded a view of the kitchen, I witnessed what I now know to be the energy of the Ace of Cups card: the new beginning, the cup that runneth over, the sense that it was all there…it just needed to be tapped.
Theresa – The Source
We’re now moving on to the first card in the Minor Arcana. It’s only appropriate that we start with the Cups since I attribute this suit to Spring season.
The Ace of Cups represents new love and the opening of the heart chakra. So how do we relate that to food?
Cups is the essence of water. What is the first thing that we ingest when we come into the world? It’s usually breast milk (or, in some cases, formula). Mother’s milk is the first nourishment and close physical contact that a human being feels.
Nursing creates the bond between mother and child. The time we spend in this act of care teaches us about love. Mother’s love sets the tone for how we love (or don’t) in the future.
Think about the first time you fell in love, your first partner, the first time you cooked for someone you loved…and then reflect on your relationship with your mother, those early memories, those times when you felt deeply loved and cared for.
If you have a child, recall those early days when you held your baby and fed them. What do you remember? Do you remember those feelings of love? (One of my favorite memories was the first time my daughter smiled – it was when she was nursing.)
Follow the dots. See the connections. Love + food + motherhood + yes, fatherhood too.
We seek to recreate this loving soul-nourishment through another person….or through other means such as food.
Our mother is our first love. Food is her way of showing that love. Food + mother are the same source. Love, love, love.
That bond awakens our tender hearts and teaches us that we are worthy of love.
So we continue to seek that pleasure and safety and nourishment and reminder of our own holiness again and again. In a decadent meal, a rich dessert, a beloved childhood dish…we long to connect to the source.
And that’s the Ace of Cups in a nutshell: the opportunity to merge with the divine source that reminds us that we are holy and loved.
Theresa and Kyle
© Theresa Reed | The Tarot Lady 2015
photos from personal collection, my daughter, and Jessica Kaminski
Hungry for more? Click here to explore the entire Tarot by the Mouthful series, from the very first card… right up to our latest installment. Bon appetit!