Cooking brings new year thoughts

Published 12:58 am Wednesday, December 27, 2006

By Staff
Omelets would be tasty. That is what I decided one Sunday morning a week or so ago, and I went to gather everything necessary to make them.
I searched the cabinet for the frying pan I use for egg cooking and plundered through the drawer for the fork I must have to turn bacon when I fry it. As I dug among the utensils, something occurred to me.
I am a creature of habit, and the habits do not necessarily make sense nor have any kind of rhyme or reason to them. Of course, explaining my odd habits to someone else who might see me as slightly nuts is not easy, so I keep them to myself as much as possible.
Habits, I have discovered, can have strange origins, some we do not recall and others come with a history. It is like that story about the woman who cut the end of the ham off before she cooked it.
Finally her husband, who I am sure on many occasion expressed his feelings about the wastefulness of this practice, asked her why she cut the end off. Her answer was because that is how her mother did it – end of discussion.
Of course, she finally asked her mother the reason behind the practice of chopping off a chunk of ham before baking. To the woman's great surprise, the reason made about as much sense as my need for a certain bacon fork.
I like the fork because of its shape and the way it feels when I hold it to turn my bacon. It is kind of long and skinny, which makes it work exactly the way it should.
Then there is the frying pan. It is not a special omelet pan. It is, however, what seems to works best when it comes to making one that does not stick and turns out looking like an omelet is supposed to look.
My other frying pans should do the job just as well; I know this in the rational, reasoning part of my brain. Other forks can keep the bacon from burning on one side, but the habit side of me resists change.
As I cracked the eggs, I considered the approaching New Year and decided that changing a few old habits is a good thing to make my goal in 2007 – not a resolution – I break those too easily. A goal sounds more achievable.
Standing at my stove frying bacon, I thought about my habits, the ones that have developed over the years and implanted themselves firmly in my psyche. I picked up the fork, considered opening the drawer and exchanging it for another one.
Did I do it?
All I will say is that it is not 2007 yet, the bacon was a perfect crispy brown and the omelets were delicious.
Nancy Blackmon
The Andalusia Star News

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