A Good Heart and a Full Pantry
April 10, 2007
Listened to the show Saturday and it was not bad. After visits to the drycleaner, the pharmacy, the florist, the post office, the library, and the grocery store (third time this week for that one), I was ready to slow things down a bit and do a little cooking. When I got home, the kids had just left for a nature hike and Mr. Sundberg was napping, trying to shake the nasty cold he's had for a week.
My original task had been preparing three egg bakes for Sunday morning's Easter Breakfast. Not a lot of work, really, so when the phone rang Friday night and Alice Johnson called to tell me she was quite sick and would I make two egg bakes for her, I was happy to do it. Not ten minutes later, the phone rang again. Harriet Munson was sick, too. Another two egg bakes. By Saturday afternoon when I headed to the store, I'd received another two calls from sick women, adding five more egg bakes to the list. That meant forty eight eggs, twelve cans of cream of mushroom soup, six pounds of cheese, and thirty six cups of croutons, and that was in addition to my Easter dinner list.
There's something rather daring and appealing about staying up all night. It's kind of like having a baby a pure kind of agony, then a week passes and you think, now that wasn't so bad. Let's have another go. It's been years since I've been up all night, and I figured what the heck. A sensible person can do just about anything with a good heart and a full pantry.
So I went at it. By midnight I'd finished half the egg bakes, a double batch of cream corn casserole, and a pan of Uncle Douglas' Slap It on Your Thigh Pie. Two hours later I'd done the ham glaze, the potatoes, and three more egg bakes. I was feeling a bit woozy so I brewed a pot of coffee thick enough to chew and lay down on the couch to rest a bit. An hour later I awoke with a start, thinking the good Lord had risen, indeed, and I was running late. Thank goodness it was only 3:03 a.m.
Four hours later I pulled up to the side door at the church and James the custodian was there to help. "You must have been up all night!" he said as we hauled the twelve egg bakes up to the kitchen. Close to it, I told him, but nothing some good coffee won't fix.
I don't remember much about Easter Sunday. The kids got themselves ready and Mr. Sundberg made it out of bed long enough to attend church. The breakfast was a great success with egg bake to spare, though I admit I wasn't able to eat anything but fruit and a few black jellybeans. As for Easter dinner at home, all I remember is how heavy that ham was, the clinking of silverware as the kids dug in, and the smell of cinnamon and sweet potatoes as I lay my head back against my chair and drifted on off.
Uncle Douglas' Slap It on Your Thigh Pie
(Sweet Potato Casserole)
6 medium sweet potatoes
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon allspice
2 cups sugar
1 stick of butter
1 tablespoon of vanilla
Evaporated milk (about 3 tablespoons, optional)
Boil the sweet potatoes with skin on until soft. Peel the skin off the potatoes. With a mixer blend the peeled potatoes, cinnamon, allspice, eggs, vanilla, and butter. Slowly add the sugar to your mixture to sweeten the filling to your taste. You may not use the whole two cups of sugar or you may use more. You want to make sure that the mixture has the texture of mashed potatoes. If the mixture is too thick, evaporated milk may be added to get it to the right thickness. Spoon mixture into a lightly greased casserole dish.
1 stick of butter (melted)
1 cup of brown sugar
1 cup of instant oatmeal
1 cup of chopped pecans
Combine all ingredients in a medium-sized bowl and mix well. Crumble topping over filling. Bake at 350 for about 30-35 minutes.