a breakfast serial

One bite-sized story every morning to uplift, motivate, or provoke thought.

Memorable Meals (Sunday Setup 3/17/13)

< by Jill >

In Futureland, where I’m blessed with two beautiful children, this is a typical afternoon in the Carey household:

I’m wearing a baby-blue house dress with a Peter-Pan collar. I’m in the kitchen with the twins (age 7) who are sitting at the end of a white, rectangular countertop. “What do you want for dessert tonight?” I ask. “Lemon bars!” shouts the blondie, a girl. “Mud pie!” shouts the one dressed as Batman.

We play rock, paper, scissors and Batman wins.

Pie it is.

I take out the recipe and we all stare at it. “See any words you know?” I ask. They scrunch up their noses and sound out the words. “E-g-g EGGS! I see EGGS!” shouts Batman. “Go ahead, get the eggs,” I say. He’s off to the fridge. Little blondie keeps pointing at words and asking if they mean sugar. Eventually, the word does mean sugar.

She hauls a sack out the pantry, leaving a thin trail of crystals on the floor.

Batman squeezes the eggs until they burst, then picks out the shells. It’s an imprecise method, but it works. Blondie takes care of the measuring. She spoons meticulously, but spills abundantly.

Eventually, we’ve got mud pie and a big mess to clean up. We sing, we clean, and the curtain closes on Futureland.

This vignette is part-truth, part-fantasy. The part-truth is that my mother taught me to cook this way — by allowing me to mash eggs, spill sugar, and get about everything wrong until, eventually, I got it right. The fantasy part is that I don’t have a baby blue house dress.

This week is a celebration of cooking. It’s all about memorable meals: what they mean, who prepared them, and why we hold them dear. Stay tuned.

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