Saturday, June 30, 2012

Oldies But Goodies... One Last Time


Cast Iron 
(Originally published 04/18/2011)

I love my cast iron skillet.  It was a hand-me-down from Derek's mom.  I feel that used cast iron cookware is usually better than new because it's already been seasoned, so I don't have to mess with any of that business.  I love to use my skillet for upside-down cakes, cornbread, and elementary home defense.

Perhaps I should explain.

Derek was gone on a business trip last week.  This meant I had to hold down the fort for a few days by myself.  Fortunately, it was warm and beautiful outside, so I let the kids run themselves into exhaustion in the backyard every afternoon.  This gave us all space during the day, and they slept soundly at night.

My nights, however, were a different story.

After I finally get the older two kiddos into bed, I bounce Caedmon around for awhile before laying him down.  Peruse the bookshelves for something to re-read because I haven't been to the library in a while.  Settle into the rocking chair in the living room.  Immerse myself in a favorite story.

Hear strange sounds.  Outside the window.  In the basement.  Upstairs.  In the laundry room.

I concentrate harder on the book and tell myself it's just the house settling.  It is, after all, an old house, and after 111 years on this earth I think she's earned the right to creak a bit.  Even if it does cause minor cardiac episodes in the chest of her owner.

After an hour or so of this, I put down my book, tidy up a bit downstairs.  Load the dishwasher, wipe down the high chair.  Grab the cast iron skillet out of the kitchen cabinet and carry it upstairs with me.

I wash up in the bathroom, change into my pajamas.  Nestle the skillet into Derek's side of the bed.

I really feel at this point that I should explain something.  I don't have a weird skillet fetish.  This piece of cookware just happens to be my weapon of choice- I need something in reaching distance when an intruder takes advantage of Derek's absence and breaks into the house.  We don't have any guns, and knives are out -our children often climb into the bed to wake me up in the morning.  Plus cast iron has a nice, reassuring heft to it.  I need two hands to lift it any higher than shoulder- height, (I had to practice, didn't I?) so it's pretty heavy.

I may or may not have read Fried Green Tomatoes At The Whistle Stop Cafe one too many times.

And seen the movie once or twice.

But I promise, if I ever do whack the boogie man over the head with my skillet, I will not chop him up and serve him to you barbeque-style.

Although I do think Head Country barbeque sauce could make just about anything taste good.  Maybe the secret really is in the sauce.

I did not end up having to use the skillet in a defensive capacity.  Derek returned home, and I returned the pan to the cabinet, where it will stay until I make an apple cake.

Or my husband leaves again.

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