As I am studying Ayurveda, part of the journey has been to more consciously integrate my ancestry... It is said that one can never fully relinquish unproductive, familial patters until one opens the heart completely to all that has been, is, and ever will be in one's lineage. The art, and grace, of non-resistance: Accepting everything as it is, exactly as it is, and realizing that beneath the illusion that there is "something wrong with me" or "dysfunctional" going on, that we are all whole and complete... safe... and enough... and good enough... and already all of the things that we hope to become are already within each of us..... Already, we are whole.

And so, this Ayurvedic practice includes adding photos of our relatives and ancestors to daily prayers, and to express gratitude for all of the ways that those who have walked before us have laid a perfect path for us to live these blessed lives we are living today. Another way is to awaken the ancestral recipes and ways of nourishment that your great grandmother, grandmother, and mother practices regularly as "sadhana" or spiritual practice, to nourish their children, spouses, churches, and neighbors.

One of my favorites is my Grandma Eleanor's, (my father's mother's) recipe for coffee cake. A german, and eventually, mid-western favorite. I've modified it to make it a bit more healthy, and it is still a sweet cake no doubt... great for cool, windy days, with butter or ghee, or whip cream if you prefer. Serve it warm or room temperature. And even the kids will enjoy this sweet, scrumptious, nourishing cake.

Pray while you make it. Pray while you bake it. Pray before you eat it. Pray while you eat it. Let it become the prayer itself.

Coffee Cake
Grandma (Eleanor) Bensen's Recipe

1/2 C jaggary, palm, or natural brown sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
2T spelt flour
3T melted butter
1/2 C chopped nuts (optional; I like to use whatever is regional... walnuts or filberts are great for the Pacific Northwest)
Mix together with a fork before mixing coffee cake

1+1/2 C whole spelt flour
3t baking powder
1/2 t salt
1/2 C jaggary, palm or natural sugar
1/4 C oil (sesame, walnut, or my favorite: coconut are great choices)
1 beaten egg
1/2 C milk (real milk, coconut, almond, or rice all work really well)

#1 - Directions: # 1 - put 1/2 cake batter into greased and floured, round 9" cake pan
#2 - Sprinkle 1/2 Streusel/Filling/Topping on top of 1/2 of cake batter in pan
#3 - Spread or dollup the rest of the cake batter on top of the Streusel/Filling/Topping
#4 - Sprinkle the rest of the Streusel/Filling/Topping on top

Bake at 375 for 25 - 30 minutes - you know it is done when a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean.

I would love to have you share some of your favorite family recipes with me... no worries if you think they aren't healthy, too meaty, or whatever it may be... if you and your family love them, and they have crossed generational timelines, then they are indeed nourishing. Send them my way and I will share them ~ and if you'd like, I can modify to make them a bit more "yogic"...