Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Fun Playing with Magnalite Pans

It is funny how the kitcheny things of our youth continue to impact us as adults, even if, like me, as a child, you always had a book to read when it was time to cook (or clean up from) a meal.

For example, I continue to lust after an aluminum Comet egg poaching pan. Both my mother and her mother had one, and there is something about a triangular-shaped poached egg that just tastes good! But somehow, both pans disappeared over time, leaving me with only memories.

So, imagine my amazement last June when my friend Scott arrived at a large party I was catering in Dayton Ohio (about 200 miles from home) with a pot of homemade chili - in a "mini" roaster that was an authentic piece of classic Magnalite! I oowed and ahhed the pan - and wondered how the aluminum hadn't reacted with the tomato-ey chili. Scott promised to watch the garage sales and EBay for a similar pan.

The reason this pan meant anything to me is that my dear mother was gifted with a full sized version of this pan when she married about 50 years ago, and my best memories of turkey come from birds roasted in this pot (we were taught to not eat the skin, so the lack of crispy skin mattered not in my house):

I loved this pan so. As Mom became disabled with Multiple Sclerosis and other ailments, and she couldn't even lift it, let alone cook with it - she gifted it to me (and has promised me the matching Chef's Pan, some day). They just don't make pans like this any more - the thickness of the metal, the quality of the construction, the heat conduction. Yet, until Scott walked into that party with his pot of chili last year, it never occurred to me to use this type of pan for anything but roasting turkey (and since I've learned to love crispy skin - this really isn't the right kind of pan to accomplish even that).

We were in Dayton this last weekend for a party with the same group - and there was Scott, grinning and bearing an almost-pristine, certainly old-as-I-am Magnalite pan just like his! And it had my name on it (figuratively). For purpose of comparison - the first photo below is Mom's pan - the next series are the baby:

This is a beautiful thing. And though we haven't played with any food in it yet - I've got a few ideas cooking . . . .

No comments:

Post a Comment