friday Fish Fry St James originally uploaded by 5chw4r7z
According to this NPR article, younger American Catholics are abandoning the traditional Lenten meals of fish on Fridays while older generations keep it in tact.
From the article:
Seafood consumption typically increases during Lent in the U.S. But Harry Balzer of the survey firm NPD Group says younger Americans are less likely to follow the tradition.
Over the past 25 years, NPD finds, the number of 18- to 34-year-olds who report eating fish at home during the Lenten season has dropped noticeably — from 66 percent in 1988 to 54 percent in 2012. Among older Americans, however, consumption remains steady. The data come from a survey that tracks the eating and drinking trends of a representative sample of households in the U.S.
The article goes on to note that some believe that younger generations are not less observant, they’re just moving to different available alternatives to meat such as pasta or any of the vegan and vegetarian options which are now available to Americans. As someone who was raised Catholic in a household where we not only gave up meat on Fridays but Wednesdays during Lent as well, we definitely ate alternative non-meat items such as egg salad during this time.
On a more personal note, giving up meat on Fridays was something I never quite understood. Why is eating nasty canned tuna fish any better than whatever else we would have eaten that day instead? Moving to egg salad for lunch was a real mind bender for my young mind being that it was a chicken after all. If I could eat the egg, why not the chicken itself? Continuing on to today, I wouldn’t mind hitting up a famed Upper Midwest Friday fish fry during Lent, it would be to experience the event as a whole and certainly to soak up some malt vinegar and coleslaw, nom nom. Now, if there are any Friday fish fries around here that serve beer, like in the picture above, please let me know so I can run over there right now ;-)
What about you? Do you still eat fish on Fridays during Lent? Have you been eating less fish and other alternatives instead? What are your favorite local fish fries? Have there been any you’ve been going to for years or do you travel between them? Whatever you have to say go ahead and comment on as I’d love to hear your thoughts.