Tag Archives: Jiminy Cricket


12 Sep

Pear Upside Down Cake

Last Saturday it was my turn to bake the treat for the volunteers at the Ashland Rotary garden.  As I looked around the kitchen at the items that I had available, I saw the pears that I’d picked at the garden a few weeks earlier and noticed that they were ripe and ready to be used.  At first I thought I would find an apple cake recipe and just substitute the pears for apples but then I thought of this recipe from Fanny Farmer’s Baking Book (I found it on a website called “365 Days of Baking“. (Holy cow – that sure sounds familiar!  I need to get in touch with this woman because we have a lot in common!)

Back to last Saturday…  Once my cake was baked, I placed it in my car and began my drive out to the garden.  As I headed up the street I saw our friend Steve setting up a yard sale.  I pulled over (no screeching brakes I swear!) and noticed he was selling mostly toys that his grandson has outgrown.  Since my ‘kids’ are 19 and 23, I wasn’t in need of toys, so instead Steve and I started chatting.

He told me that he made a quiche recently but he wasn’t thrilled with the results and asked would I share my recipe with him.  I told him that I relied on a ratio for my quiche filling.  For the custard portion of a 9″ deep dish pie, I use 4 eggs, 2 cups of half and half (or whole milk if I am trying to lessen the caloric content) and then add 2 cups of grated cheese (usually cheddar or swiss).  Of course, you’ll still need to add some sautéed vegetables (and cooked sausage or bacon if you’re so inclined) but that’s about it.  Just about then the yard sale got busy.  I knew I had to get to the garden so I promised Steve I’d write the recipe down and get it to him later.

Spinach, Onion, and Pepper Quiche

Well, a few days later I still  had not written down the recipe, and I thought of how amazing Steve and Ellie are for adopting their grandson and putting all their time, love, and energy into raising him… and before you could say “Jiminy Cricket” I had a quiche in the oven for them.  A short while later I knocked on their door and handed Ellie the quiche still hot from the oven… with the promise that I would get the recipe to Steve soon.   Ellie thanked me and gave me a big hug and I was off.

The very next day I wanted to prepare fresh tomato sauce for the Baked Manicotti that I was making for guests that evening when I went into my pantry and found only one onion when I really needed two.  I began thinking of who might have an onion I could borrow when there was a knock at the door.   When I opened the door, there was Ellie handing me several paper bags filled with goodies from her garden… including 2 onions! 

The bounty from Ellie’s garden!

This sort of occurrence might fall under the heading of serendipity or luck, but I like to think that there is a grander scheme that we are all a part of and that sometimes – if we are lucky – we get to glimpse its magic.

Coincidence is the word we use when we can’t see the levers and pulleys.
-Emma Bull

Day 258: Barbara again!

20 Dec

How funny that I have made a pie for three Barbara’s in a row! Today’s Barbara was suggested to me by my friend Jack. He mentioned that he held this lady in high esteem because she did the right thing “just because” it was the right thing to do.

I think that when we see people doing the “right thing” we notice it… because really, nowadays, it’s not very common. Just a few days ago someone said to me, “whatever happened to people with a conscience?” A conscience… wow. Wasn’t that who Jiminy Cricket was for Pinocchio?

I remember when I was about 7 years old and I was sitting in the living room of my mother’s friend’s house. There on the coffee table was a silver dime… and I don’t know what made me do it, but I took it. And from the scolding I got you would have thought that I had stolen all the gold from Fort Knox! Did that teach me a lesson? You better believe it did!

Many years later, on a shopping excursion with my two small children, I was able to instill that lesson once again. As I was paying at the cashier I noticed that my daughter was acting a bit strangely but could not discern what was going on. That was until we stepped outside the store and I noticed that her pocket was “full”. I asked what she had in her pocket and she said, “nothing!”

Then I reached into her pocket and took out a small bag of candy. She seemed incredulous… as if it had appeared there by magic. I marched her right back into the store to the same register and waited for the cashier so that I could return the candy. When he finally did recognize me and heard my story, “I am so sorry… but my daughter took this candy “by accident”…” he said, “oh, it’s okay.” And it took a lot for me to say, “No. It is not okay. My daughter took this candy without paying and she is very sorry for doing that and (glaring at her) she will never do that again!”

I think that if there were more people out there who had Mama’s who held their feet to the fire, well maybe there would be more people feeling a little bit more accountable. Maybe there would be less crime… or maybe we would be more considerate of one another. It just makes sense that we all need to be held accountable for what we do; we all need to have a conscience. And it’s likely that ours won’t be as cute as Jiminy Cricket, but if it helps us to do the right thing, well, that’s more than good enough.