The founder of Easton Mountain John Stasio has a favorite word...Community...its what we are at Easton. A community of men living Wayne foodtogether who share meals...he likes to call this a taste for community. We often pray in a circle holding hands before we eat to give thanks...the informal prayer I say in my head is: "Thank you God for friends...food and family and most of all friends who become family by sharing food." We are a family here who break bread together. Our prayer circle has a more formal prayer often recited by Mike Hands... one of our spiritual advisors...I believe he wrote it..."Loving spirit that brings us together we thank you for the gifts before us and for the gift of community...may we always be grateful...Amen. Yes I am grateful...The last meal we shared was prepared by resident musician Freddy Freeman and his husband and illustrator Jay Freeman...It was an invention of their own...Buffalo Chicken Pasta...a spin on Buffalo wings. Jay and Freddy are good friends with our Easton brother and performer Kendall Kelley who hails from Buffalo...he taught the Freeman's that what gives wings from Buffalo their signature flavor is Frank's Hokale heartt Sauce...they combined the sauce with whole wheat penne pasta...bleu cheese...celery and chicken to make a dish that had no leftovers...YES it was that good. I love that not only do we get to share food but our lives...the conversation at the table is often enlightening...we discuss the arts...current events...spirituality and politics. It was at that very table that I learned about the creation of Buffalo Wings...I had ALWAYS wondered why chicken wings were called that. I am a cook myself and often act as "the chef" as do we all...In community everyone takes his turn...by his name alone you know that Stasio is Italian and has the skill to cook like one. ALL Italian men know their way around a kitchen...Some nights you will find Stasio...Columbo and Capeci all pitching in to make the meal...When I do I will make my grandmother's marinated salad using tomatoes from our community garden. John likes to use as much produce as possible grown on property and we are all glad of it...Tomatoes ripened on the vine that burst with flavor...onions so strong you have to wear glasses to peel them and kale that works steamed as a side dish...fresh in a salad or baked and salted into chips. Senior resident Sunfire once made a souffle that fellow volunteer Gary described as "like eating a cloud"...our meals often end with a homemade dessert. Randy is king and I his prince...he taught me pies...the night of the Buffalo Pasta I made an apple pie and we served it a la mode...Coincidentally Pie a la Mode was invented at the Cambridge Hotel which is ten minutes from Easton...I love that our meal that night tied into two pieces of New York's Culinary history. I also love that every night the signal for the meal to begin is the ringing of a giant brass bell that can be heard throughout the property. Hearing it peal signals once again that it is time for us to share our food and our lives. Our food is the staff of our lives. We have a taste for community... Its one of the many reasons why I love living in this community at Easton Mountain.John Chuck Kitchen

 

 

 

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