The View From My Cup on the Ides of March

The view from my cup…a slice of sticky bun. The hubs and I have a Sunday morning ritual. He gets up, gets dressed, and goes out to pick up the Huntington and Charleston newspapers. Some mornings he brings home something for breakfast too. And me? Well, I languish in bed, awaiting his return and the sound of the coffee pot warming up to brew.

On this particular morning, we had a pecan sticky bun, heated a bit, of course. He asked how big a slice I wanted? I’m instantly taken back to the kitchen of my youth when my mother would ask ‘sliver, slice, or slab?’ No matter what the food in question – pie, cake, meatloaf, fresh-baked bread – there was always the choice of serving size. I can’t say I ever remember opting for a ‘sliver’ of anything.

My mother was a pretty good cook. But she was an excellent baker. None of that ‘out of a box’ stuff for her. Cake flour was sifted, sugar measured, eggs were separated, and whatever else was needed to produce scrumptious goodies.

There are things I do in the kitchen that happen without thought. Years of doing things the same way my mother did them are ingrained. Measuring sugar involves leveling off the top of the measuring cup with the flat edge of a knife to ensure preciseness. Fudge is made in the same large, pink Corning bowl, stirred with the same ages-old metal spoon with the red Bakelite handle. Cake doneness is determined with the same long, thin cake tester 3 generations of women have used.

I don’t bake nearly as much as my mother did. But I enjoy it. A few Christmases ago, my son surprised me with a red Kitchenaid stand mixer. It does the job nicely. Mom would have liked it. Today might be a good day to bake something for the hubs. He usually opts for a slice. But if you have seconds, two slices equal a slab!