Sunday, May 19, 2013

Hamburgers aren't meant to be rare even a half century later.... recipe Six

We left our Grandma Thelma's and I think it was a relief to my momma.  I know she could not bear to be haunted by the memories daily.  She was in such a sorrowful state if she didn't have us I am not sure she would have made it through.  She cling especially to Sister, as she was a baby at the time.  We moved to a 50 acre sheep farm.  We moved into the old farm house.  We didn't take a lot of the thing that belonged to my grandparents my mom couldn't seem to be comfortable with them.  Most were given away and years later my mom came to regret the loss of most of the things, quite a few of the things went to Auntie but mom never got them back.  I can recall just a few items she kept, a trunk of letters we kids ruined, a round mid century clock, the rock table (am not even sure of the table but mostly the rocks), a fountain pen, a few pieces of jewelry but nothing else comes to mind.  We lived in the old farm house a short while then moved into a basement that my dad had had poured where we was going to build a house on.  My "Auntie" moved into the farm house.  Before we had moved out of the old farm house my Great Grand Mother Glassey had come to visit, she was not happy with my momma again.  I know of only seeing my grandmother 3 or 4 times in my life and she was always mean.  I did not see her during one of the visits and all the others kids said she was nice and loving, I do wish I had gotten to see her that visit as I only have sad memories of her visits.  This visit us kids bugged her, my momma was in trouble if she disciplined us and in trouble if she didn't, she only stayed a week thank the Lord.  We loved the basement, it was exciting and Auntie's boys, she had three, were our daily playmates, our cousins lived a couple of acres over and they were with us daily as well, there were 5 of them.  Daddy built on the basement when ever he was home from work,  he was making it into a three story house, it seemed like a mansion to us.  We only lived there a couple of years but it was ever evolving, we had to move in 1966 when the boss of the mill across the field died of cancer, the loss of another loved one was to hard on my folks we moved to Grangeville Idaho from there.  They sold their house and 50 acres in 1966 for 15 thousand cash, the Bitteroot valley changed so much in just a few years that in 1980 the acreage had been sold off and the completed house on one acre sold for one million dollars.  The valley boomed to an extent that if you didn't own it you probably couldn't afford it, if you were a local.  I digress back to our new basement.

We moved in in late summer but summer none the less, there were adventures to have and mischief to make.  Adventures we had many.  Our Auntie moved in next to us as I have said, she or we had a cow maybe both I am not totally sure but she was going to teach my mom to milk a cow.  She grabbed the teats and udder and put them into the pail, she didn't even bother to wipe them off and they had cow Poop on them,  ewwww.  I recalled that she said it didn't matter all that much you had to strain the milk when you were done anyway.  It didn't make for an appetizing thought to drinking milk from the cow for the first time to any of us.  Auntie did have a way about her, she once said that she swept her house once a week whether it needed it or not.  It usually did.  She also had lots and lots of sets of dishes, if you went to visit like we did, mom always had to wash all of them before we could eat.  She was a farm girl to her core and we loved her for it. 

We hadn't lived in the basement very long when the freezer up and died.  Mom took all the meat out of it and put in into our little read wagon, she said it was wasted, it didn't look that bad to us but she said it was garbage.  Silver, Red and I pulled the little wagon in to the sheep pasture just over a little rise where momma could not see us from the basement.  We played kitchen and cooking.  We cooked up patties and mud pies.  We also ate the patties that we made.  We were so sick later that night, we threw up well into the night.  To this day I can not abide hamburger that is anything less than well done, but give me a steak and as long as it is warm to the center it can be mooing for all I care.  The rarer the better, but not rare burger ever.  It makes my stomach roll and want to crawl up and out.  We were still a handful for momma we just had a bigger back yard to play in.  I remember Sister sitting in the house with momma.  She looked like a living dolly,  she would sit right next to momma with her little dolly,  the dolly had a hooded jammie that was pink.  Sister would pull little fuzz balls off of her dolly and roll them for endless hours between her fingers. She always sort of hummed as she rolled.

I remember breakfast the most in the basement for some reason.  We had the cow, and we had finally gotten over the poop on her teats, plus momma actually washed the udder before she milked.  We had lovely cream from the milk, and the milk was nice too.  We had a lot of mushes, I don't recall ever having much cereal in my childhood.  It was something we never got into the habit of, maybe it was new fangled or expensive, either way we never had much of it and when we lived in the basement I would venture to say we had never even heard of it.  We had a lot of oatmeal though but some times, only sometimes momma would make Oatmeal and whipped Cream.

Oatmeal and Whipped Cream

4 cups of water to the boil
1 cup of Old fashioned Quaker Oatmeal, we had never heard of quick oats
1/2 cup raisins.
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1 cup of cold raw cows cream, the thickest part off of the top of the jar
1/4 cup of sugar
1 teaspoon of vanilla
Pinch of salt

4 cups of water with a pinch of salt in it.  Water boils faster with salt, so momma said.  When it boils add the oatmeal to the water and stir good.  Cook for 5 minutes at a simmer, add the raisins and cinnamon and stir in well.  Let set a few minutes after you turn off the burner to set good.  In the mean time, or while it is setting.  Put the cream in a bowl and mix with the mixer until it forms soft peaks,  cold cream is better for whipping.  Once it is whipped fold in the sugar and the vanilla.  Dish into bowl and put a big dollop on top of each bowl.  Serve hot. 

I remember the treat of that big dollop of cream on our oatmeal, the nutty taste of the grain, the sweet popping raisins and the cold of the cream if you ate if quick before it melted.  It tasted like foam if you let it melt.  It would foam up and make the oatmeal all fluffy if you stirred it in.  It didn't take long for the fluff to deflate but if you ate it quick each bite would be fluffy.  I don't think I have ever enjoyed oatmeal like the kind you have when it has raw whipped cows cream all fluffed up........

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