Saturday, March 3, 2012

ms. cat's opinion

"A cup of sugar, mostly brown," reads my mother's exasperating directions for pudding.  On any normal Thursday I would have called up the hill and said, "please Marie, be more specific," and she would have growled wondering why I didn't inherit her talent at literally reading between the lines of that recipe card.  Instead I possess my father's love of structure and the need to compulsively and painstakingly organize every facet in life. All science, no artistry here. At the end of the recipe she has written, "look at it."  No surprise, Marie has written her recipes for her eyes only. She always was a solitary girl. Geniuses in any field including the culinary arts don't have a clue how the rest of us common folk struggle and muddle through what looks to them to be a simple process.

If Sonny was not coming to dinner dessert would consist of Girl Scout cookies, you pick, I got'em all. But my father was accustomed to apple pie or strawberries in sauce on a homemade biscuit.  "Your mother cooked in the German fashion,"  says Dad's new paramour, a woman I have known since childhood, a safe bet for the old man.  "Big meals, lots of sides, and dessert. Your dad doesn't need all that."  In otherwards, quit  spoiling him. Easy for Cathy to say.  It's in her best interests to groom him for independence in case they take up housekeeping together. I'm still a lonely woman who achingly misses her mother and turning Dad into my child somewhat eases the dilemma. I know, probably a Freudian response, but then isn't everything.

So, I'm looking at this pudding as I have been instructed and it resembles watery cocoa, not what we want. Eureka! It has cornstarch in it and cornstarch gets thicker the more you cook it.  Back in the microwave again and again and now's it's a thick sludge but passable for human consumption.  Spent too much tme on the damn pudding, there will be baked potatoes instead of scalloped with swiss and parmesan cheeses.  Ahoy, Ms.Cat,  how'em I doing?


AmySueRose said...

One of my favorites since childhood (awesome day if I came home from school and saw individuals colored bowls of pudding cooling on the counter)I called mom regarding this recipe a few months before she passed. Use all brown sugar.

dawn marie giegerich said...

Okay, good to know. Yes, I remember the plastic wrap over those red and white bowls, the smokey taste of dark chocolate.