My own “Lessons In Chemisty”

I come from a long line of excellent cooks.

My grandmother could fry chicken, bake bread and make the best Buckwheat pancakes I have ever tasted.

Sadly none of the recipes appear to have survived except maybe the pancakes.  Most likely they were all in her head and I did not think to get her to write them down or take notes as she cooked 🙁

My two favorite cooks 🙂

My mother was also an excellent cook.  Her brisket was to die for and one of our family’s favorite meals.  When I first met Paul he called me to chat while I was on college fall break.  I was so taken aback and thrilled that he called I wasn’t thinking and he finally said ” Are you going to invite me over or what”  So of course I did and my mother wowed him with one of her fabulous meals.

Much later ( after we were engaged) I heard when he returned to college after that visit he talked more about the brisket than he did about me ..wait what?  I do believe he thought I could cook like my mother.

Sadly that cooking gene missed me.  I can cook.  America’s Worst Cook show will not be recruiting me anytime soon however I do not do it as effortlessly as my grandmother or my mother or for that matter my daughters who did inherit the cooking gene.

My Mom and daughter Sarah saving me at Thanksgiving!

Also young children can kill any cooking aspirations one might have very quickly.  At least mine did.  When I was 6 months pregnant with our son I had a craving for a mini Thanksgiving dinner.  Sarah and Julie were five and two years old.  On a crisp fall evening I managed to whip up a delicious meal complete with turkey, mashed potatoes, green beans and rolls. As I bathed my daughters before dinner I said excitedly “We are having a great dinner tonight, it already smells delicious, you will love it”    They both got very excited and asked what it was and as I excitedly described the culinary feast that awaited them they both began to cry.

The sound of their immediate tears is still in my ears.

They wailed like someone had taken Christmas away from them.

Through their tears they both said “We wanted Macaroni and Cheese”

And with that I realized that perhaps I needed to table my cooking aspirations.

Ironically they both are amazing cooks.  Go figure.

So earlier this month I decided to venture into the realm of sourdough bread making inspired by the centanrians living on in Sardinia, Italy.  It is one the staples in their diet.

Delicious bread and longevity? Works for me!

Turns out one of the major ingredients in this process is patience and discipline, neither of which are my best qualities and yet I perservered

My own personal “Lessons in Chemisty” began with trepidation as that is the class I almost failed in college.

Who knew making my own sordough starter was like getting a new pet that had to be fed and nurtured?

Who knew I would be using a calendar to calculate exactly when the bread would be ready and using alerts on phone to feed my starter?

Paul, self proclaimed bread connoisseur, excitedly asked when the bread would be ready.  His expression when I said “In 3 weeks” was priceless.

I did my best.  I measured, and weighed the ingredients.  I followed the directions precisely.

It did feel like a chemistry class.

As I write this my loaves are in the oven.  Fingers crossed for beginners luck !

Just as a back up I have macaroni and cheese waiting.

As always keep triing or cooking as the case may be,


P.S.The technology gremlins finally decided to behave so  you too can get this right into to you inbox almost every Tuesday ( a day earlier than everyone else …  :)!  Just fill out the very annoying pop up in this post!

All grammatical and spelling errors are my gift to you and may you have a magical day or several 🙂

My sourdough bread skills still need work but it was edible so that is a plus.

I was recently published in the book ” So God Made a Mother” ( you can order it here) and I am working on a yet to be named novel.  My six grandchildren keep me young and my very organized hubby Paul tolerates my very unorganized yiddle ( middle and youngest) self.  Opposites do attract 🙂


Related Articles:


  1. Jennifer Ross says

    Just checking to see if the comments section action works 🙂