Last month my family spent a week (our 4th year in a row!) enjoying each others' company while sharing a huge house on Saranac Lake, NY. How huge? Big enough to contain my parents, their 6 children (plus spouses), 19 grandchildren, and a few other assorted friends and relatives. We always have a great time.
So one day as I was hustling out the door on my errand to town, I caught sight of my brother (the country club executive chef) kindly beginning lunch preparations for the horde of children. The menu of the day included macaroni and cheese. From a box. With envelopes of "cheese" powder. Heroic work for a real chef.
What stopped me in my tracks was the butter. My brother was unwrapping stick after stick after stick--six in all! On questioning, he professed to be simply following the package directions. It was true--each box, with less than a pound of noodles, suggested adding 1/2 cup of butter!
I couldn't imagine that anyone could/would REALLY put so much fat into such a small amount of pasta. We good naturedly argued the point, and I got M to rewrap some sticks before I left. I'm pretty sure he added some back, though, because we ran out of butter the next day!
I must admit that I was hungry enough to eat some blazing orange mac-n-cheese when I returned from town, and it was tastier than I expected. But, yikes, at what price?
That was the beginning of the week's butter banter between the chef and the mom who cooks whole wheat pasta. There were jokes and comments and a grocery list with "butter" entered many, many times. We had fun.
And now, my mail:He sent my party (our parents' 50th celebration) check in this tastefully designed envelope.Every time I look at it, I smile and remember just how much I love my brother.