6 August 2008
06/August/2008 Filed in: Jottings
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The feast of the Transfiguration, always a great favourite in the monastery, coincides with the annual beanfeast: broad beans, runner beans, French beans, the garden is full of them. Inevitably, our dinner plates are full of them, too. Any little mumblings from those not keen on beans twice a day are quelled by the reminder that the great abbot Hugh of Cluny took his turn in the kitchen and cooked . . . beans. (Contrary to poular belief, the everyday diet at Cluny, at least during the earlier period, was mainly bread and beans.) This historical nugget will be useful today as the Transfiguration is in origin a Cluniac feast and the festive dinner is going to feature, yes, BEANS! (Perhaps some summer squash and spinach as well so that there is no "justifiable grumbling". Fortunately, the liturgy will be splendid even if the dinner isn't.)