When I was a child my mother made us blintzes (thin pancakes, crepes or blinis). We usually ate blintzes on summer days, and those were the days we left our third floor apartment door open, and we used a screen door. First, my mother used the frying pan you see here to prepare the thin pancakes that she would later fill with cheese or blueberries. Then after sautéing her filled blintzes in butter in the same frying pan, our family would eat them with dollops of sour cream and/or sugar. Yummy!
On one of those blintze-making days long ago, my mother said to me, “Rowie, someday this frying pan will be yours.” According to her, this amazing frying pan was the only frying pan on all seven continents that could prepare blintzes the right way!
I offer Ma’s frying pan here for your consideration. It’s aluminum and it’s about sixty years old, give or take a decade.
My mother died on December 19, 1988, and I wanted to write about her a few days ago, but nothing I drafted— worked. I posted nothing on December 19th. I was trying to stick with my theme of writing about introversion, solitude, and the effects of too much stim (light, sound,) on my delicate psyche.
Normally, I am calmed by textures that are dull and natural looking. If I could decorate my whole house with driftwood, and soft earth colors, I believe, I could be more serene. Shiny makes me crazy. This whole holiday season with its bright lights, loud music, and the in-your-face commercials makes me as frenetic as the squirrels at my bird feeders when they find the peanut butter. I’m an introvert. I need solitude. I need softness and muted colors. I need time with my own thoughts.
The other day, I found my mother’s shiny blintze pan on a back shelf in our basement. After she died, I made blintzes at my home, but only once. I stopped making blintzes because Jerome the Great and Good didn’t care for them; they’re a pain in the neck to make; and blintzes are very rich. The word, rich, has become a bad word in foody circles. I know many people who screw up their noses like squirrels and say, “Oh, I couldn’t eat that. It’s too rich.” Then they go eat their kale.
I make kale soup and it is really great—but it’s not blintzes! Blintzes, eaten on a hot day in Apartment 33B on the third floor, with the screen door open and the smells of the vanilla, butter, cream cheeses, and dough wafting into the entire apartment house, is an experience that I will remember, forever.
I stared at the blintze pan a long time. Then I picked it up and kissed it, and I held it close. I was alone.
I’m sure extroverts do things like kissing their mother’s frying pans too, but I’m an introvert, and my moments of solitude sustain me. So I am sharing my holiday thoughts with introverts, extroverts, and everyone.
Once in a while, eat stuff that is rich. Tomorrow there will be plenty of time to diet.
Go off into your little private place; caress your grandma’s old recipes or your ma’s old pots or your dad’s old work clothes…the ones you packed away because you couldn’t bear to part with them.
Find that box where you packed away your kids’ size 3 month undershirts and stretchies. Pick them up, hold them, and let your senses overcome you. Cuddle them, smell them, talk to them, have a good cry, and then come back out and join the party with your best smiling extrovert face!
It’s good to remember and it’s great to be alive!
Merry Christmas! Happy Chanukah! Happy New Year to Everyone!
15 thoughts on “The Best Frying Pan in the World!”
I love this story about Granny’s blintz pan. I can truly relate as I baked for Christmas using my grandmother’s pastry board. This board was made by my granfather, passed on to my Mother and then on to me. The Board is at least 100 years old and still looks great!
I like to think about all the homemade pasta ravioli and Easter pies that were rolled out on it.
Introvett,extrovert, whateververt these memories are the beautiful links to our growing up. Loved the article. More please! !
Thanks for the follow!
Me want blintzes!!
Gonna make ’em soon.
I remember those wonderful blitzes, made by aunt Mary.
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Rose, I love what you wrote. It is really touching…beautiful!
Sent from my iPad
Thanks, Barbara. I’m happy it touched you.
I will come over and eat blintzes any day!!
And, of course, you will learn how to cook them, Granny style.
I enjoyed reading this one. My mom had a cast iron frying pan and she made all her Irish soda breads in it. My sister inherited it along with the recipe and she turns out the soda bread now. It only tastes right if it comes from that pan.
I totally get it.
Loved this blog! Brought back wonderful memories of my mother cooking and baking in our little kitchen. Wishing you and Jerry a Happy New Year!
So happy you liked it, Mo. It seemed to resonate with quite a few people.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and Bob!
Love blintzers, they are the best, don’t care about the fat, healthy eating is no fun. For me and my mom it is her hugh turkey platter with a big blue turkey in the middle. Everytime I used it I thought of her. One hear after Lisa got married and I made thanksgiving, she remembered it and asked if she could have it to carry on the tradition. I was sad to part with it, but I think my mom was really smiling to know that her beloved Lisa was not the proud owner of this family heirloom. Now each thanksgiving at Lisa’s she and I look at each other and smile as she places the platter on the table and says thanks grandma for the great memories.
I loved your story, Lynn. There is nothing better than sending on that heirloom to our children. Happy New Year!