Don’t Turn My Underwear Pink

My mother and father raised me and my sister right. They get kudos for it from their friends. I, of course, like hearing that people think my sister and I are not maladjusted.

Growing up in the “S” household meant knowing how to do things, namely, dishes, laundry (learning how not to turn underwear pink,) dusting, sweeping and vacuuming, and yes, even cooking and baking. I’ve blogged about my dad’s influence on me here before so it’s my mother’s turn. My mother made sure both of her children knew how to keep care of themselves and prepared us for life. When I went off to college it was me who made sure my college buddies didn’t screw up their clothes in the laundry. My mother just made sure we knew how to keep our lives on track (and clean.) This came from the same woman who would fluff pillows on the couch before the person even got up.

Here’s where the admission comes into play. I like to cook and occassionally bake. Yes, bake. Not really for the joy it may bring others while they’re in the kitchen but the fringe benefits it offers me. This brings me to a story that I never let my sister live down. Many Christmases ago, in a land far, far away (from Cleveland… that would be Wayne County) I decided I would bake some Christmas cookies. My father was at work. My mother was working also and didn’t think she’d get time to bake the annual holiday cookies so I took the bull by the horns, opened up her recipe box and started putting together the ingredients to Mexican Wedding Cookies and to my mother’s Christmas cookies (with deference to Marianne B. for either the recipe or the frosting, complete with lemon flavoring).

{start dramatic music}

I slaved away in that kitchen all day long, making dozens of cookies for my family to enjoy. My sister came home first…

{end dramatic music, start Dragnet-like music}

Then my mother arrived, she was stunned somebody had made all of the cookies for the season. I remember she was really busy doing something that holiday so she wasn’t going to make them. I digress. My sister promptly told my mother, she’d made all of the cookies while I watched TV or something like that all day. My mother complimented my sister on how good every cookie looked and how she didn’t even have a lot of success with the Mexican Wedding Cookies.

I was stunned. I’d worked all day and my sister was taking AND getting the credit for my accomplishments. I told my mother I made the cookies. She rolled her eyes and said something like there was no way I’d made the cookies and they came out that good. Believe it or not, it was years before my sister relented and actually admitted she had no part in making the cookies that day. I believe she also claimed amnesty for several other fibs as well. God, I always got in trouble for things I didn’t do and just took the punishment. Come to think of it, that still happens today.

I cook often (what do you want, I’m a bachelor) but every now and then just to prove to myself that I can, I’ll try to bake something. There’s nothing better than having some fresh Toll House cookies in my place or even Nolan’s mother’s Pistachio Cake. Before you say anything about this post, I’ll gladly let you come over to my house and bake something for me.

Here’s the recipe for the Pistachio Cake:

White or yellow cake mix (I think Nolan’s mom uses Yellow)
One 3 oz. box of pistachio instant pudding
4 eggs
3/4 cup oil
3/4 cup + 1 Tbsp Water

Bake 350 degrees for 30 – 35 minutes in a 9×13 greased & floured

2 cups powered sugar, 1/3 cup water, 2 tspns vanilla.

Turn off oven, poke holes in cake, pour on glaze, put in oven for
additional 5 minutes.

It’s great, I’ve made it, it’s very moist and rich.

Try it, you won’t be disappointed,