Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Sign in to follow this  
Daily Gullet Staff

Fruit of the Brine

Recommended Posts

Wonderful -- you've done your history so proud. Your essay reminds me of my father, a Man of the Fifties if there ever was one. My mom in a rebellious turn when I was 12, and against all desires of Dad, went back to work as a Labor & Delivery nurse at the city hospital. They required her to work every other weekend, hence a large measure of the source of my father's disgruntlement. The job of making weekend lunch for my father fell to the three daughters. It was a race between my sisters and I to make ourselves scarce at lunchtime, to avoid the sight of my father sitting silently at the kitchen table waiting for his sandwich, chips, and bread-and-butter pickles (just grocery store jarred I am sad to say, even sadder after reading your entry). One day, my sister made him the sandwich and the chips. No pickles. In his way, which anyone who has met him knows, he accused her of DELIBERATELY omitting the pickles. Last time she ever made lunch for him. Not to be confused with the cold toast at breakfast contretemps between him and my mom. Last time she ever made him breakfast (at least until he retired and they generally softened up.) Even now, if my parents come for lunch, I make sure we have the g.d. pickles. Somehow, I'm thinking that even if I did spectacular home-grown, home-put-up pickles, he'd be sitting, silently waiting at the table for the Vlasics...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rachel, dear, you write exactly as I wish I could and exactly what I like to read. :wub:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Somehow, I'm thinking that even if I did spectacular home-grown, home-put-up pickles, he'd be sitting, silently waiting at the table for the Vlasics...

Of course. Homemade vs. home-stocked. We grow accustomed, and therein lies our favorite. My own Dad was a Man of the Fifties, as well, in most instances, but his adventuresome spirit and willingness to try almost anything acquitted him well in our household---I'd branch out into whatever recipe seemed interesting, and he usually always liked it.

Mother was a meat and potatoes, peas and cornbread, spaghetti sometimes (made in a black skillet---and I remember it fondly) girl, but she was a fantastic dessert cook. She accumulated recipes by the ton, clipped from Farm Journal and Southern Living and McCall's or heard under the hairdryer and scribbled into her little book, then honed them to perfection. When we helped Daddy move after he sold our family home, I went straight to the kitchen and upended two drawers into boxes, sealing them tight and sending them straight out to "our" truck. The recipe drawer and her drawerful of crisply-ironed aprons, most embroidered or smocked or rickracked by her own hands.

Mother was also a pickle-maker extraordinaire, with enough shelves of the briny green things to stock the ark. I remember only one "bought" pickle in my Mother's kitchen: something called "candied dills," long quarter-cut spears in a knockout-sweet syrup with a few mustard seeds. I had one friend who made sure she asked if we had any, every time she visited. I'd fork her one out of the jar; she'd take it dripping between her fingers and hold it high, slurping the syrup from the end like a kid biting the bottom out of an ice cream cone. And that bit of cucumber probably contained more sugar than the drugstore double-dip.

It's just all in what you're used to.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ah, Kim---always good to hear from you, dear. I'm glad you found it enjoyable.

Hope you've been well.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Rachel's PMs are works of art -- she can get in the flow all us writers yearn for. When she writes an article it's like getting a letter from your smartest, kindest friend.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What a lovely holiday gift, and wonderful way to end the year!! Thank you.

I've been trying to figure a way to tell Maggie that the Bane of a Small House piece is the best thing I've read in FOREVER, without sounding like a major suck-up.

And it is.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

ay what a lovely thread. i never thought that i would ever develop a craving for pickles. id love to run to the import aisle of the supermarket to get me a jar of dills. but alas i cant!

i love the tart, salty, cold with just a hint of sweetness when i bite into a section of deli sandwiches to crunch into a slice of pickle. i used to take them outta my burgers when i ate beef as a child. but something about pickles, relish and tangy ketchup just seems irresistable to me now.

im asian so things like japanese oshinko tsukemono (esp daikon, eggplant and kappa), kimchi stuff, archar and chinese mustard greens are more familiar to me

what i hate though are pickled fish/seafood stuffs. vile! pickled herrings anyone? yuck.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

AHHH---we could sit down together at a meal anytime, with all those lovely Asian vegetables in all sort of vinegary brines, especially daikon and kimchee.

And leave all those fishy attempts to heartier souls, like Chris and Bourdain.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

All this talk of pickles has me jonesing for a corned beef sandwich.

Not to mix metaphors, but RachelD, you're a peach!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Sign in to follow this  

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×