The funny things Linda used to say still makes me chuckle to this day. She had a way of putting things that I thought was hysterically clever. No one thought that we were as funny as each other, and isn’t it nice when someone laughs at your corny jokes? We were different people in a way that attracted us to each other and kept the friendship delightfully interesting and refreshing.
How were we different?
She did not cook.
I love to cook.
I love to create and eat savory soups.
She thought all soups tasted like “boiled vegetables” and said that with a wrinkled nose and curled up lip.
I cook all the time and she was
the presenter of food.
What is a presenter of food? How do great women become one?
I asked her what that meant the first time I heard her use that term for hosting dinner.
She said, “You know, I go to the store or restaurant, I take the prepared dishes out of the plastic containers, I arrange them on my good china, and then I PRESENT them to the guests invited to dinner. I am a presenter of food”
Well, I laughed and laughed. I loved it. What a liberating concept. I certainly had never thought of that, cuz cooking it my thang! And now I can honestly tell you, it sure speeds up the process!
My family knows that I am a good cook. My recent mastery of Mexican food has caused us all to gain a few pounds of evidence. I love cooking, and I serve it all with love and a smile. I cook and serve it all …everything, except for dessert.
Like Linda, I am a presenter of dessert. And I don’t hide that fact either. If someone is having a “bring a dish” gathering, I tell them upfront, I can bring anything you want, except dessert. If you want dessert from me, you are going to get a package or oreo cookies or the likes of that…done deal.
So I do not bake, I present bakery.
Should I feel guilty about this? NO!
Other women are presenters too! Some of them amazing bakers!
Case in Point: Once I was having dinner at my mother-in-laws home, on a hot summer day, and Uncle was there. After the delicious meal of (ehhhhhh) homemade scalloped potatoes (that giles and craig raved about 😉 ) and baked Ham, she brought out trays of the most beautiful assortment of lemon bars, cookies, frosted brownies, sponge cakes, etc. You get the picture, it was a buffet of dessert! It was a buffet of dessert on a hot and humid day, mid week!
Now, there isn’t a sane person alive that would bake that much for a dinner on a Wednesday night. But the men were evidently oblivious to the logistics of a meal like that, or of what preparation would have had to happen in that kitchen to pull it off, but that is besides the point. THEY LOVED IT!
They marveled :
“OH NAN, you must have baked all day! Mmmmmm” said Uncle as he filled his desset plate.
“Mom, I love your lemon bars,” said Craig and he glanced at me with stars in his eyes.
“I always love the way you make your homemade scallped potatoes.”
“Grandma, can I have two?” said the kids and their little hands reached out to get some.
And Nancy just sat there smiling, then broke into a giggle ( that I caught) and then collected herself, and went back to smiling and accepting all of the praise and glory.
She had PRESENTED the dessert! … and I loved her for it!
Now, she could probably pull this off because she IS an amazing baker, but really, that assortment was crazy!
Out on her washer and dryer, carefully concealed under a beach towel, was the plastic dessert packages from econo foods. We both stood there laughing and laughing as the family graised through the dessert bar in the other room.
So that little story tells me that you can go from a BAKER to a PRESENTER.
And yesterday proved that you can go the other way too!
You see, I never have been able to bake. Yes, pretty much, the word “never” can be used. Oh, I baked things to within an inch of becoming dust, and they were hard as a rock when they came out of the over, you know… items that you could use as a door stop. That sort of product was common when I baked so I gave it up.
If I wanted cookies, I would buy all the ingredients and ask Justin to do it. And Thanks to Justin, we have had some fresh bakery around here at times. Alas, Justin doesn’t live here any more…
But yesterday was a breakthrough!
I graduated from being the presenter of desserts to actually baking them!
I CAN BAKE!
I baked two Pies and they are wonderful!
Not just a little good, but really good!
So the moral of the post is this:
You can serve food or present food, either way, it’s the company that you keep that really that matters
… and a little sweetness along the way never hurts a thing!