Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Gasping & Crying

For me, this is the Thanksgiving of the parsley. I went to one store Friday and three on Saturday (had three separate transactions at one store 'cause I kept forgetting stuff) and yet managed to come home without parsley. Parsley is a must have for Thanksgiving and turkey burgers. Anyhoo, I braved chilly Chicago weather, a full parking lot and a vehicle that really needs to go to the shop for parsley. It's really a longer story that involved tears, but I'll spare you the details.

Before I headed out, I called my Aunt Carolyn who was fixing the first of her two Thanksgiving meals. Today's is for the employees. In mid conversation, she gasped as she realized she had one can of creamed corn and one can of regular corn. This would not do! She quickly got off the phone to head to the store. (She and I like to be done with grocery stores no later than the Saturday before the holiday.)

Just got of the phone with cousin Cheri. Cheri lives and dies by Patti LaBelle's first cookbook, especially Miss Patti's sweet potato pie recipe. I loved Patti back in the day, but she ain't got nothing on my sister-in-law's, Pam's, sweet potato pie. It was the best I'd ever had (until she gave me the recipe and I added my secret ingredient). One Christmas, Cheri showed up with Miss Patti's pie and Pam showed up with hers. Pam's was wiped out and Cheri's was left looking forlorn! Cheri tasted Pam's and then realized why. Cheri called me yesterday and asked for the recipe. I told her I'd email her today.

She told me she made the pies 'cause she couldn't wait on my email. She made five pies! I was impressed. (Cheri was never a lover of the kitchen. She married a chef, so why bother?) She said they were good, but not Pam's. She ran down her list of ingredients and said that the pies were flat. I asked her how many eggs she used. Her answer was three. "Cheri, you didn't use enough eggs." Gasp. Found out she didn't use enough sweet milk either. Gasp again.

She tried to take credit for using sweetened condenced milk instead of evaporated milk. Sorry. No points given, you're supposed to use sweet milk. "I talked to Mom and she uses evaporated."
"Cheri, yo' mama's pies are good, but they ain't Pam's pies." Moan and mumble from her.
"Your pies are probably good, they just aren't perfect like Pam's. Trust me. Whoever you made them for will eat them."

I'm headed back to the kitchen now to marvel at parsley.

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