from the Christian History Institute:
On a Friday during Lent in 1522, a respected Swiss printer named Christoph Froschauer hosted a home-cooked supper of sausages for his hard-working employees, inviting town dignitaries-- and pastor Huldrych Zwingli-- to join in.
Such brazen defiance of the church’s fasting laws sparked a public uproar and led to Froschauer’s imprisonment. Zwingli, however, defended the meal, preaching that “Christians are free to fast or not to fast because the Bible does not prohibit the eating of meat during Lent.” And so the Reformation in Zurich began . . . thanks, in part, to a plate of sausages.
For centuries the church’s seasonal rhythms of feasting and fasting had shaped the way people ate, resulting in a flourishing fish industry and a host of dietary regulations and creative meat and dairy substitutions for use during Lent. The Reformation didn’t just shake the fault lines of Western Christendom; it reshaped the Christian diet.
The entire article can be read here.