Groundhog Day. It would have been my parents’ something or other anniversary today. One year I made them a groundhog cake. It wasn’t all that attractive but they loved it. Oh, there was one year, on my Dad’s birthday that Ernie made him a LST cake. It was big and gray, and again, not all that attractive, but my father was delighted.
Last night, as I was lying in bed talking to the lights on the fence, I kept thinking about my mother. Somebody had posted on the NYTimes Cooking Community Facebook page about have a childhood treat: torn pieces of buttered toast with a soft boiled egg. It reminded me of my favorite breakfast as a kid, dropped egg on toast. Dropped egg being a New England term for a poached egg I guess. I loved it. I always chose it over cereal. I loved soft boiled eggs too. Haven’t had one in eons.
My mother didn’t particularly like to cook. She was incredibly creative in other ways but cooking she did because she had to. So, somehow my memories of her and food aren’t the meals we ate regularly (although I loved the rolled-up meatloaf and mashed potatoes) but, instead the little everyday snacks, lunches or breakfasts. I remember dropped eggs on toast, or on a big old shredded wheat biscuit for breakfast. The shredded wheat got dosed with a bit of boiling water before the egg. I got a hankering for one of those the other day, but you know, wheat and I don’t work. I also remember a special snack when I’d been running around the yard and came in asking for something. Bread, butter and sugar. That’s right, a piece of white bread, some butter (well, actually margarine) and a sprinkling of sugar. I can just smell it and taste the crunch of the sugar as I ran back outside. Or when she made piecrust and would let us take the little leftover scraps and sprinkle them with cinnamon and sugar. Oh, or for that matter, cinnamon toast, especially when we didn’t feel good.
Welsh Rabbit for lunch when I’d walk home from grade school to eat at home was a great favorite. Saltines covered with Campbell’s cheese soup and sprinkled with paprika. I remember the flavor of that paprika so well.
That’s what the lights and I talked about last night.
In other news: Leo is the proud owner of, hell, I don’t know what to call it, a number plate, I guess, for a Milwaukee Road engine. Crazily enough the number 207 is meaningful to him as well….he had to have it. I kinda want to steal it for my living room wall but I don’t think that will happen.
Last night I SO did not feel like cooking. I even went through all the various menus for restaurant week in town but nothing sound good enough to merit the expense so I sucked it up. Ernie made a batch of quinoa for me and I scrounged in the refrigerator and added cut up leftover lamb, some leftover broccoli, a yellow pepper, some peas, some fresh herbs I found that were magically still good and doused it all with some olive oil and that wonderful lemon balsamic vinegar Carrie and Bill gave us. Some salt and pepper and we were done and it tasted fresh and good.
Leftover for breakfast with a fried egg and some avocado. Owen looked at my breakfast and told me it was very modern.
In a diner I’m always an over-easy kind of girl, but at home, Ernie makes perfect sunnyside-up eggs with crispy edges on the whites.
Another sunny day. Onward.