Tuesday, February 24, 2009

What's in a Measurement?

I was thinking about measurements today. As a dietitian, I measure a lot of things. When developing meal plans and recipes, I am especially careful about measurements. I think that they are exceedingly helpful in being successful in many areas of nutrition. After all, measurements help ensure that everyone reading the information understands exactly what is meant and results in consistent foods through standardized recipes.

Sometimes that just doesn't happen. Sometimes we throw in a pinch of this and a dash of that and we end up with a very different result each time. It can be good, but it can also be terrible. My training has taught me the need to be exact. But sometimes I don't want to be exact. Sometimes I want to find a little grey.

My grandmother was a great cook. I never once remember her measuring out flour for her biscuits. She never used a measuring cup for the buttermilk. Everything was done by feel. She had a scoop that she used, some sort of cup, but not a traditional measuring utensil. She'd add in a little more buttermilk or flour, until the point where the soft, sticky dough was perfect. And the biscuits were always perfect. Light and golden brown, slightly crunchy on the top and around the edges and tender inside. Steam coming out as I broke one open to add some butter. And she used a drinking glass to cut them into rounds, by the way. The same glass that I might have my milk out of alongside my biscuit.

I wish I had a glass of sweet milk with a flour dusted rim and a biscuit made by my grandmother right now. When I get to heaven, I hope that it's waiting for me with a big grandma hug. That's the best food I can think of tonight...oh, and by the way, there'll be no calorie counting in heaven! One more thing to look forward to.


Jerome said...

If you had 2 would you share? :)

I think there are many direct parallels from cooking to life. Too bad there are no standardized recipes for people.

patrckb said...

I call the scale at the gym the "truth machine." I might like what it says or I may not like it. But it always tells me The Truth.

Jerome said...

Patrick I respectfully disagree. The truth is a constant. The number you see when you step on the scale is a snapshot of an indicator for that moment in time. I call it an indicator because it only points at a truth, and not always the one we expect. It will change the next time you step on the treadmill. And as Sherry said, these bodies are temporary stopping grounds not permanent abodes. Whats hot here may be quite common in heaven. Still I agree it is nice when the number goes the direction we want.