Thursday, September 11, 2014

Time Traveler

Watch the look on a little Kid's face when a grizzled grandpa or wrinkled grannie says, "When I was a child like you...."  Kids simply cannot make the connection.  Children cannot project into the future, but the elderly spend a lot of time in the past.  I did a bit of time travel myself last night as I fried potatoes for dinner.  I was going to pour the bacon fat from the BT sandwiches into the coffee can for used oil, but then remembered how good my mother's fried potatoes had been.  Once upon a time (in the 1940s) every kitchen, at least every kitchen I knew, had a jar or can for drippings.  Persnickety housewives would strain the fat from bacon or pork chops, but my mother appreciated the flavor of the fond (the little browned bits left in the pan) and left the lard as is.  At one time during World War II, the grease cans were saved and given for the war effort.  I can't imagine what the government did with all that bacon fat; I guess it was the precursor to recycling.  It sure put a crimp in cooking.  Butter was almost impossible to get, rationed and requiring coupons to buy when it could be found.  That was the advent of margarine, then called Oleo, and, believe me, it did not taste or look like butter.  Willing to do her part, Mother did contribute grease, but held some back for us.  Bacon fat went into the bottom of the cast-iron skillet to make cornbread.  White bread was fried crisp and brown in the fat after cooking pork chops.  No one had heard of cholesterol in those days, and somehow we managed to survive.  All this was going through my head as I thinly sliced potatoes, skin on, and browned them in bacon grease.  Who knew potatoes could be a time machine?  They sure were good.

Bessie Anne appreciates not having to wade through mounds of dried leaves on the deck, and I appreciate her not bringing in and dropping leaves throughout the house.  Take a look while it's this clean.  More leaves are falling even as we speak.  Like dusting, it's a never-ending job.


Kathryn said...

Ah, the deck looks so inviting, and I can smell the potatoes from here!!

Emmy Abrahams said...

I remember squeezing little packet of orange coloring in all white oleo to make it more palatable...
Bacon and the grease tastes good with everything.