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Old 07-02-2017, 06:00 AM   #1
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Amateur in the Kitchen

I don't remember the first time my mother plopped me on the counter so I could help stir a batch of cookies. But I'm willing to bet that most everyone remembers their first unaccompanied foray into the kitchen. Mine came at age seven. Playing hookey from school (a sore throat or something similar) I had my heart set on whoopee pies. I'd seen enough of these marvelous chocolaty sandwiches come out of the oven. It sure looked easy enough. Reading the recipe was a cinch, but somehow my mind transposed 2 cups of flour into 2 Tbs of flour.

It was a curious thing. I just figured that that expanding puddle of batter was going to magically mound up into the cookies. It didn't with the first pan, nor the second pan. But I had a large collection of wafer thin cooked batter. And then my older sister walked in from school. Three years older and wiser in the ways of the kitchen, she quickly took over, corrected the batter, then forced me to eat the first two pans of my finished product. In the end, I had my favorite dessert but was too full to eat any. The family seemed to enjoy them, and nobody but big sister bothered to lecture me about the dangers of the kitchen. I think they felt I had been adequately scolded.

In remembering this childhood incident, I am reminded of things past. So much of what was in my mother's kitchen is now in mine. That old cast iron fry pan, the corn steamer, a certain two cup measuring cup... I still have some of those old cookie sheets kicking around somewhere.

Sixty years have passed since those whoopee pies were made, and though the recipe has not changed, the method of preparation has. The advent of the stand mixer has radically altered the method. Faster, more efficient, and I get a lump free batter; and the sticky addition of marshmallow cream to the filling is a breeze. It is so easy to tweak it a little now, and not end up wearing it.

Another wonderful baking item that I've come across is parchment paper. Right up until I discovered that, it was the wax paper that lined the round cake layer pans. I wonder just how much paraffin the body can handle. Parchment paper now lines every cookie sheet, cake pan, and jelly roll pan, regardless of the content. It sure makes those whoopee pies slip right off the pan. And what it does when it comes to cleanup is awesome. There isn't much of that at all.

Family dinners, meal bartering, and just plain baking and cooking to please my own palette have lead to many happy days in the kitchen. Don't you love a request for a favorite dessert? The advent of new kitchen products just increases that desire to get in there and test a new recipe. I think I've got the whoopee pies down pat now.


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Old 07-03-2017, 06:02 PM   #2
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Hi, Margot. Welcome to Discuss Cooking and thank you for the lovely story

Anyplace where people argue about food is a good place.
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Old 07-03-2017, 07:52 PM   #3
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Great story, Margot... Welcome to DC...

Disclaimer: My experiences may not be as someone else might think correct.. Life goes on..
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Old 07-03-2017, 09:07 PM   #4
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Loved your story Margot, and welcome to DC.
Grandchildren fill the space in your heart you never knew was empty.
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Old 07-03-2017, 10:10 PM   #5
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Good memories.... Now, we go from wax paper to parchment paper and the newest, silicone baking pads! Are we getting old or something? Just the same, welcome to DC.
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Old 07-03-2017, 10:14 PM   #6
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Our local paper just posted the prices in 1999 and what they are now in 2017. If that doesn't make you feel old, nothing will.
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Old 07-03-2017, 10:37 PM   #7
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Welcome to DC.
"If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe." -Carl Sagan
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Old 07-04-2017, 10:53 AM   #8
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Hello, Margot - and welcome to DC! Looking forward to hearing more stories from you.
Cindi in NC
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Take life one day at a time - and what doesn't kill you will only make you stronger. ( Unknown/Kelly Clarkson)
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Old 07-04-2017, 11:14 AM   #9
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Hi Margot
Welcome to DC

Practice Random Acts of Kindness ( RAK ) Makes you feel great too
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Old 07-04-2017, 12:19 PM   #10
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Thank you for a well written story and childhood memory. Welcome to DC. Looking forward to more of your forays into the kitchen.

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I don't want my last words to be, "I wish I had spent more time doing housework"
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