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Friday, September 18, 2009


I don't know what it is with me lately, but I am absolutely hooked on oatmeal. Not only that, but I am in the kitchen cooking several nights a week and baking on Saturday mornings - and enjoying it! I am a self-proclaimed cooking-hater. I always have been. I've always felt inadequate in the kitchen. Now I'm making curry and beautiful pumpkin canneloni for weeknight suppers and baking oat bread and pumpkin oat muffins for breakfast. Right now, on a Friday night after what has to rank as one of the lousiest weeks of my teaching career just because every single day of the five was stink-o, I have an Oatmeal Pie in the oven. I found the recipe in my grandmother's old recipe box. Neither she nor my mother ever indicate how long to bake things. They just write "until done." So, I set the timer for 20 minutes and am hoping for the best. It smells wonderful!

Maybe I should credit the movie Julie and Julia which I saw on a Saturday afternoon with my mother and then convinced my husband to see with me on Labor Day. I thoroughly enjoyed the movie and related to Julie's feelings about her job - doing my best to help and being smacked down at every turn. Her commentary about cooking at the end of the day bringing some sense of continuity to life, being something you can count on, really hit home with me. And, while I'm not willing to kill a lobster or debone a duck, I am having fun with some vegetarian recipes and am actually putting to use the small collection of vintage aprons that heretofore were merely decorative in my kitchen.

Twenty minutes turned out not to be long enough, but I'm keeping a careful eye on it. I only have enough calories left today to sample an extra-small piece (what Grandma would have termed "a sliver"), but I'm looking forward to it. Let the public education system twist itself into knots if it will - I'm eating oatmeal.

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