Like The Queen
Whatever happens to strike my fancy, but surely some sort of fiber content.


Ack! I'm as amazed as you are about the cooking thing. I was brought up by an excellent cook (even if she protested that she never improvised -- just followed recipes...), and took Home Ec in school. So did my DD (though, like me, she'd rather bake than cook), and my DS. In fact, after last summer's job in the U of C dining room kitchen, he makes a mean stir fry and a lovely salad! So...this year, he cooks his own in dorm. I dunno what his room-mates on campus, I think...poor souls!

By Blogger Margaret, at 9:41 AM  

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Saturday, November 27, 2004  

When LD got his first apartment he wrote and asked for my recipes for certain favorite dishes. I’d already taught him the rudiments of cooking and even a few twists on just plain food cooking to make things taste better. Food is a serious part of the H family routine - they are all gourmands and a few are gourmets. I am not a gourmet but I will put my cooking up against most any fairly good chef’s. I can read a cook book as well as the next person. My hands are deft. I know that butter will fix anything that isn’t burned. Over 33 years of having my own kitchen I’ve developed a few recipes that are perennial hits. I did the math, wrote them down and popped them off to starving student on a budget.

There came the single time I visited him at college and while looking around his apartment I asked him if his roommates liked it when he began to cook. I was horrified when he told me no - when he got out an onion and a knife they all hid out in their rooms.

Offended I huffed “well, what’s wrong with your cooking?” and he told me they didn’t like the meat he used. Upon further inquiry I asked him what sort of meat that was.

He said “squirrels, mostly”.

I understood, then. Prepared squirrels look like rats in a pan. But he also told me something else that threw me. None of his roommates had ever had home cooked food. They alternated between frozen dinners and take-out. Not just at college, either. These kids had been brought up that way. “But - what do they do on Thanksgiving?” I asked in disbelief. “They go to a restaurant” was the quick reply.

So - along with many other shortcomings the baby boomers don’t cook. It really bothered me when I first heard about it and I’m still a little disgusted with a parent thinking it was a healthy way to raise kids. But the idea of every woman with her own kitchen is a very modern concept. Till fairly recently, in historical terms, it was far more common for one cook to feed all the people in a big establishment and the rest of the people to eat at cook houses. Cooking was considered a particular skill much like smithing or coopering or carpentry. With the pioneer thrust, where families did find themselves alone in the wilderness, someone had to do the cooking and it was usually the wife. So, perhaps it is not such a horrifying thing that 2 out of 3 average college boys grew up with a mother who didn’t cook. It’s just horrifying to me.

Well, all that was prompted by Catherine’s comment on girlchild’s stuffing being “better than stovetop”. I wonder what I will be comparing myself to when I have grandchildren?

The Marvelous Sheryl came yesterday and we got all the windows clean! Sparkling clean. Glistening clean. Streaklessly, vinegary clean. It took all afternoon and afterwards my right arm ached but a hot bath, hot tea and ibuprofen took care of that. How perfect, too, that every crystal pane let in the dancing shimmers from a full moon last night.

And today I get to do Wedding Stuff. GD, BH, her daughters and I are off to Richmond to buy (we hope) Flower Maiden dresses. It’s a bit of a push to drag little girls dress shopping on the Thanksgiving weekend but I suspect bridal dress shops won’t be all that busy. The older FM is in love with GD, so we can pull her away from the neighborhood crowd, the younger FM is in love with clothes so this is right up her alley. We aren’t going to try to do anything else, though. No point in making the kids suffer more than they have to. I send up, here, a little prayer to the Wedding Fairy-Goddess, that we find something quick.

Tomorrow I’ll sew more on TheWeddingDress. I’ve ripped apart the first muslin and will use it to make a heavily interfaced lining. It will go only to the end of the bodice, an asymmetrical line from waist to left hip point. Then I’ll use the rest of the cheap taffeta to make the main dress. I have some filmy stuff I can use to try making the overdress with it’s shirred bodice and I shan’t worry about a skirt for that. It’s all a new sort of sewing for me and the engineering challenge has been tremendous.

The final bit of wedding news is that my sister’s bluegrass band, The New Girls Night Out, has been booked for the reception. We all have our talents and my youngest sister was born to be on stage. It’s always seemed a pity that she hasn’t pursued it as a profession. She is truly the stuff of stars. But it’s her life and she chooses to keep her music as an avocation, to the great benefit of the rest of the “girls” in her band. Bluegrass is LD’s favorite music and I think the women’s voices will be even prettier in the church hall setting.

And I see it’s time to get crackin’. Ta.

posted by Bess | 6:52 AM