I've been negligent: three weeks since my last post. Terribly sorry. In that time, I've received the manuscript back from the publisher. The editor pointed out one particular criticism in my theoretical framework. I feel that folklore and oral tradition emphasizes starvation and weed-eating too heavily. My rebuttal was to write about all the times people didn't starve and had plenty to eat of diverse dishes. Apparently I did this too well, and made it sound like things were pleasant most of the time. I swayed too far in the opulent direction, so I'll have to modify some of my modifiers.
In the mean time, I also read Dickens' A Christmas Carol (in prep for the fantastic new animated movie). Here's one of Dickens' many passages describing Christmastime food (in this case a pudding):
"Hallo! A great deal of steam! The pudding was out of the copper. A smell like a washing day! That was the cloth. A smell like an eating house and a pastry cook's next door to each other, with a laundress' next door to that! That was the pudding! In half a minute Mrs. Cratchit entered--flushed, but smiling proudly--with the pudding, like a speckled cannon ball, so hard and firm, blazing in half of half a quartern of ignited brandy, and bedight with Christmas holly stuck to the top."
I wish you all such a Christmas pudding, and fine friends and family who might share it with you.