‘Throwing it out’ will never be easy

Thursday, May 30, 2019
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Cooking in the West

June is the time when I decide to roll up my sleeves and clean out some junk. However, my parents were children of the Great Depression, so I can still hear their voices ringing in my ears when I think about pitching stuff that could potentially have some use in the future--even though it has received no usage within the last 37 years. Marilee Robinson of Billings, sent me her delightful book East Meets West, and one of her essays, which I have abridged this week is called “Throwin’ It Out.” I love her style of only using dialogue to tell her stories.

“Throwing It Out!”

“Where’d we get all this stuff, anyway?” “Well, let’s see--36 Christmases, 133 birthdays, 2032 trips to town, and of course shopping the catalogs helped some.” “OK, never mind where we got it--let’s get rid of it!” “Right, these piles of magazines and newspapers can surely go.” “Not my Western Horseman, Western Ag Reporter, or Horse ‘N Rider. We better keep those newspapers and the National Geographic too.” “How about those old boots, shirts, and Levis?” “Those boots have lots of wear in ‘um yet. I had these shirts since high school. Some of those old Levis are worth big bucks, and they’re useful in lots of ways, so we better keep ‘em.” “How about those old shoes and blouses? “I was married in those shoes – don’t you remember, and those blouses are for painting.” “How about these old toys of the kids’?” “Well, I was saving them for their kids.” “How ‘bout this old frying pan?” “That was the first gift you gave me for Christmas – don’t you remember?” “How about these empty boxes?” “No, I need them for Christmas, birthdays, secret pal things, and tons of stuff.” “How about these old cans of paint?” “Oh, I’m going to mix it all together and paint the bunkhouse with it someday.” “What about these old cards?” “I saw this thing on the t.v. where you can make your own cards and decorations out of them.” “What about this pile of scrap material?” “Are you kidding? People will kill for scrap material. Think of all the quilts and doll clothes and potholders and Halloween costumes I can use them for?” “What about this old lantern?” “No, I can use it in hunting camp if we can find a wick for it somewhere.” “How about these old cupboard doors that don’t fit anything?” “I’m sure a person could make something out of those some day.” “How about this wad of string?” “Well, ok, throw it out, but we’ll probably be needing it next week!” It is rhubarb season, and one of the most unique rhubarb recipes I have seen came from Janice Knudsen of Bainvillea. Janice sent a rhubarb cream pie recipe that she received from her husband’s aunt, the late Leona Young of Absarokee. Thanks, Janice!

Janice’s Rhubarb Cream Pie

3 C. rhubarb 1 1/2 C. sugar 3 T. flour 3 egg yolks 6 T. cream 1 t. lemon flavoring pinch salt Cook in the microwave on full power for about 3 minutes. Stir and cook again. Stir and cook a couple minutes each time until cooked and thick. Pour into desired crust.

Fresh Apple Cake

2 C. sugar 1 1/2 C. oil 1 t. salt 4 well-beaten eggs 2 t. vanilla 2 T. lemon juice 1 1/4 t. soda 3 C. peeled and chopped apples 3 C. flour 1 C. nuts Combine sugar, oil, eggs, vanilla, salt, and lemon juice. Mix soda and flour and add to mixture. Beat this by hand, add apples and nuts. Put into tube (bundt) pan (spray with Pam first) and bake at 325 degrees for 1.5 hours. When cake is done, leave in pan and add glaze. GLAZE 1 C. brown sugar 1/2 C. milk 1 stick butter 2 t. granulated white sugar Spray sauce pan with Pam thoroughly, add glaze ingredients, bring to boil for 2 minutes. Let the glaze cool prior to pouring over cake. Poke holes in top of cake with toothpick and pour the cooled glaze over cake while the cake is still hot.