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Old 05-21-2007, 03:31 PM   #1
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How long to cook it?

I just had an email exchange with one of my boys that reminded me of something that happened long ago.

Thought you guys might appreciate it.

When I was a kid my Mom and Dad took us kids to the Pennsylvania Dutch Folklife Festival in Kutztown, PA every year. One year when I was curious about everything I was fascinated with the process of making apple butter. The stuff was cooked for hours and hours in big copper pots over an open fire. It had to be stirred constantly so it wouldn't stick and burn. This was accomplished with long handled stirring sticks which allowed the person stirring to stand back from the hot fire.

Intrigued by the process, I walked up to one lady stirring the mixture and asked her how long they cooked the stuff.

"Why, 'till it's DONE!" came the reply.

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Old 05-21-2007, 03:33 PM   #2
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That's the way to cook.
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Old 05-21-2007, 04:44 PM   #3
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And you reply was what???
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Old 05-21-2007, 05:40 PM   #4
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I just stood there embarrassed I'd even asked. I was just a shy kid and it took me a long time to muster the courage to ask in the first place.

Katie will tell you I'm different now...
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Old 05-21-2007, 05:42 PM   #5
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I cook pretty much the same way the apple butter lady did. Have probe thermometers and some of that other stuff, but have been cooking long enough now to mostly know when something's done.
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Old 05-21-2007, 06:39 PM   #6
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yup, till it's done. I won't serve half cooked food. Carpaccio is cooked by looking at it...yup it's done! Pot roast is done when it's falling off the bone, yup it's done!
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Old 05-21-2007, 07:43 PM   #7
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yep till it's done, and not a minute longer
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Old 05-22-2007, 12:20 AM   #8
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Hmm? Buck? Just gotta ask WHY? WHY? would ya ask?
Apples have a kinda weird way of breaking down when they cook.Plus adding the nutmeg & Cinn? HMM?
Depends on what variety your cooking with! Some get mushy,Some stay solid! Just Gotta know what good Apple your using? (To cook with for that apple butt that is!). It's been My Fav too! for Lots of Years.. my grands used macs,jona golds,Honeycrips & even a granny smith at times..Good Luck Buck! hope you have all the apple butter till your hearts content....
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Old 05-22-2007, 10:12 PM   #9
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thebrat - I think you missed the esoteric wisdom that Buck was sharing - you might call it Buck's Kitchen Wisdom - How Long Does it Need to Cook? ... akin to one of Aesop's Fables ... it is a story with a moral. While the story may have evolved around making apple butter - the true moral of the story is asking the question, "How long does anything have to cook?" And, the answer is universal, "Until it's done!"

Sorry Buck, don't think telling Katie you're a philosopher is going to get you out of helping to clean up after cooking.
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Old 05-23-2007, 01:09 AM   #10
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Thanks Michael....I think...
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