My research also recently tipped me off to the fact that Charles Pinheiro was a Freemason. He wasn't the first in my family to be a Freemason, but despite that fact I still don't know much about the organization. I can tell Charles was an officer, but what is an S.S., and what would that have meant his duties entailed?
I found my answer in a pretty unconventional place. Did you know that The Complete Dummies series did a book on Freemasons? I didn't either. Their guide was actually pretty helpful!
Senior Steward and Junior StewardAs I continued to search across the internet for more mention of Charles, I found him in several more partial entries on Google Books, as well as on this blog. As I continued to explore the New Memories blog, I found something pretty exciting; a recipe for something I sure Charles would've eaten.
Because the Stewards are the low guys on the totem pole of the officers' line, they do much of the grunt work. They're the Junior Warden's assistants, and they help to set up the lodge room. They prepare all new candidates before entering the lodge for their degree rituals, and escort them to the lodge room, where the Senior Deacon takes over. They may also be the kitchen and wait staff of the lodge, which means they're champing at the bit to move up to the Junior Warden's job.
The Stewards, like the Deacons, also carry rods, in imitation of England's Lord High Steward's rod in the House of Lords. The rods are also topped with the jewels of their offices.
The Stewards' officers jewels are the same: a cornucopia, or "horn of plenty," symbolizing — what else? — lots of food. Masons love to eat and will find any excuse they can to have a breakfast, luncheon, or dinner to commemorate just about anything.
Akara (Bean Balls)Makes a great snack, or may be served as a side dish.
Ingredients2 cups of cooked beans (navy, black-eyed or lima)
1 large onion, finely chopped
1/2 cup cooked meat (any kind of meat can be used)
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground chili pepper
1/3 cup peanut oil
- Cook the beans until they are soft.
- Mash the beans.
- Add the rest of the ingredients, except the oil and flour.
- Mix into a thick paste, then form into small balls.
- Coat the balls lightly with flour.
- Heat the oil. Fry the bean balls in the oil until crisp and brown.
Recipe taken from: The Black Canadians: Their History and Contributions, by Velma Carter and Levro (Lee) Carter. (Edmonton: Reidmore Books, 1989)
We're planning on making it tomorrow after Church to try it. Who doesn't like trying new food, right? Who knows, may it was his favorite and he always made it for the lodge meetings. Or whenever he came home from his church meetings. Here's to a new tradition if it turns out well!