Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Overheard in the Kitchen: Miracles

The kitchen is bright on a summer morning. Don is cooking breakfast for His Bride; she is reading a book at the small round dinner table with a red checkered table cloth. The children are asleep, and so the cardinals can be heard whistling outside the window. The kitchen smells of hot oil, toasting bread, and rich coffee. Don has a pan heating for eggs and another with shortening heated to a liquid state. Using an ice cream scoop, he carefully ladles out a large dollop of leftover mashed potatoes from a tupperware container. With any luck, in a few minutes he will serve His Bride delicious potato pancakes, with smooth white centers enclosed within brown, crispy outsides. He flattens the dollop in the center of the pan and sprinkles garlic salt over it. It would be fair to say that he is feeling smug at the prowess with which he is cooking his wife breakfast in gentlemanly fashion. In a moment, he plans to break the eggs one-handed because he once read that this impresses women.

Don: "Whoa!"
Bride: "Whoa what?"
Don: "I'm not really sure . . . I've never seen that happen before. The potatoes melted."
Bride: "The what? What did you do?"
Don: "I didn't . . . I just put a scoop of mashed potatoes in the oil to make, you know, like potato pancakes. Like latkes."
Bride: "So what's wrong?"
Don: "I put the potatoes in the oil, and flattened 'em out, and they just disappeared. It was like they melted into the oil. It's actually pretty freaky. Can starch even do that?"
Bride: "Honey?"
Don: "Yes dear?"
Bride: "That's a container of Crisco I fried fish in awhile ago."

I figure it could have been worse. Could have thrown a pat of butter on there and eaten a spoonful cold . . . or filled a big bowl of mashed potatoes in thrown it in the microwave for a couple of minutes, thus starting the Grease Fire of '09.

Never did find out what Crisco pancakes taste like.