Yet Another Butter Blog... - To Infinity and Beyond! Blog at - 272979

To Infinity and Beyond!

Yet another butter blog... 
Apr. 16, 2012 10:58 am 
Updated: Apr. 19, 2012 10:35 am
If you haven't figured it out yet, one of the assignments for the AR Brand Ambassadors this month was to blog about a memory associated with butter.  Most people seem to have warm fuzzy memories with their grandparents and butter.  I don't.  Some people have warm fuzzy memories with their mother and butter.  I don't.  I really considered skipping this particular assignment because I don't have particularly warm fuzzy memories of baking with butter.  But then I thought something a little different would be a nice change. 

Before I was born, my family had what they called a "creamery".  They gathered up the fresh cows' milk from all the local dairy farms and brought it back to their business and bottled the milk (in glass bottles) and made butter.  I know this because I have heard the stories of my older brothers driving milk trucks into downtown Washington, DC in the early morning hours so that restaurants would have fresh bottled milk.  I've also heard stories of all my siblings participating in wrapping freshly churned butter.  This all disappeared either shortly after I was born or right before.  I have no memory of the "creamery".  The building I am always directed to as their creamery building was a laundromat in my earliest memories.

I had only one grandmother alive when I was young and she was not the typical grandmother.  She was not at all warm and fuzzy.  My memories of her are that she had a calendar that she kept on her dining room table where she wrote down the weather for each day, that she kept peppermint Chicklets in abundance in her dining room buffet drawer, in her final years she got dressed up and did her hair to watch Lawrence Welk on Sunday nights and her recipe claim to fame was a mean mint julep.  I couldn't tell you from experience on that one.

I also don't have memories of my mother cooking or baking with butter.  Funny how if we had a family business centered around fresh milk and butter, that I always remember my mother using margarine.  I'm sure it was purely for economical reasons but that is what I grew up with.

I think my first real delicious experience with butter was with my mother-in-law.  There is someone who has never allowed margarine in her home.  She keeps sticks of butter out on the table at all times.  I remember her fixing toast for a crowd one time where the bread was spread out on a cookie sheet and square pats of butter were applied all around the bread.  Then the cookie sheet was popped in the oven and baked until the butter melted and the bread was toasted.  I'd never seen such a production but oh my was that toast good!

In my own life I have always had sticks of unsalted butter around to bake with.  I usually have at least 5 pounds in my freezer at any given time.  But I've always used margarine for the table because it is spreadable.  Now, after my kids are away from home, I've gone to trying to use butter only.  I like the spreadable kind that is mixed with canola oil or olive oil.  But occasionally a tub of margine will slip in.  I try very hard to stick to something that someone told me once:  For smart eating, don't eat anything that your grandmother wouldn't recognize.  I don't know if my grandmother ever used margarine.  I know neither butter or margarine goes in mint juleps!

I am an Allrecipes Allstar Brand Ambassador(a voluntary position) and I’m not compensated for my work with The reviews, content and opinions expressed in this blog are purely the sole opinions of me, myself, and I, Maridele.
Apr. 16, 2012 11:21 am
My grandmother put on a 'house' dress when she got up and puttered around in that until about 3 pm when she changed for 'dinner.' Since we were far from formal I have to assume this carried over from when my grandfather was alive and women were expected to greet the husband like June Cleaver. She too, was an ardent Lawrence Welk fan, but her drink of choice was a Whiskey Sour. I often wonder what my granddaughters will remember about me.....
Apr. 16, 2012 11:43 am
Up until the penultimate paragraph, you had me so distressed that I was thinking of grabbing a stick of butter and beating it to smithereens on your behalf . . . but then a calming effect came over me when reading your mother-in-law introduced you to your first real delicious experience. Indeed, a very happy ending. *** Just teasing *** . . . I enjoyed your blog! By the way, I still live w/ nightmares of Lawrence Welk and Myron Floren who my Dad loved to watch every Saturday night . . . with two young boys w/ nothing else to do, we would cut jokes during the performance which would get my Mom giggling, and which would then upset my Dad.
Apr. 16, 2012 12:25 pm
Thoroughly enjoyed your blog!
Apr. 16, 2012 12:45 pm
BSM - I don't yet have grandchildren but do wonder what my children say about me. Maybe I don't want to know. :-)
Apr. 16, 2012 12:47 pm
ConkyJoe - If we would happen to visit my grandmother on Sunday night, life as we knew it had to come to a screeching halt for Lawrence Welk. We didn't dare utter a peep! I seem to remember it being on Sunday night, but you say Saturday. I'm not really sure but I know she dressed up including jewelry for the event.
Apr. 16, 2012 12:47 pm
bd.weld - Thanks. It was somewhat cathartic to write.
Apr. 16, 2012 12:56 pm
Maridele, I have memories of my mother in the kitchen and at the sewing machine. She used butter fairly often. My daddy had a "sweet tooth". My mom made pies and cakes from scratch, yum! I miss her cooking. She passed away almost 6 years ago. She never wrote down a recipe. When I married I had to call her to ask "how do you cook .........". She'd tell me every step then later call me back to ask how it turned out. I'd always say "not as good as yours." lol! Speaking of butter, my dad would put butter on biscuits, cornbread, muffins, basically almost everything. My mom would tell him, "there's butter in it." His reply would always be, "I can't see it!" Butter is expensive and I'll use it when I'm baking. My doctor has told me I'm on the borderline of high cholesterol. So, I do watch what I eat. Now that it's warmer weather, I grill out and only season veggies with the spray oil or spray butter. Yep, it's expensive but I only use little of it. Great blog! Made me think if my mom!
Apr. 16, 2012 1:24 pm
luv2cook - I'm glad I could bring back some sweet memories for you. Thanks for stopping by.
Apr. 17, 2012 4:58 am
My own grandmother doesn't discriminate on fats - margarine, butter, Crisco, olive oil, canola oil, veg oil... it's all in her kitchen! For different purposes, and I'm the same :)
Apr. 17, 2012 4:58 am
Isn't it interesting what memories sometimes bubble up? The story about your family's creamery is fascinating. How I wish more of our family stories were written down! Thanks for sharing--p.s., Lawrence Welk was revered in my family, too!
Apr. 17, 2012 4:59 am
I remember the milk in the bottles being delivered to my grandmother's front stoop. My brother and I loved to drink the cream on top. I know my parents used butter most my life, since Dad was military she got it cheap from the commissary. I think they use a butter spread now, since at Easter dinner when all I had on the table was butter, they asked if I had butter spread. The only time my mother baked was cookies at Christmas time. She was a hamburger helper mom all the way!
Apr. 17, 2012 5:46 am
Alex, I think considering all the pros and cons on both sides that's probably a good way to be.
Apr. 17, 2012 5:47 am
Bibi - I do wish I knew more about the creamery business. One of these days I'm going to have some time with my siblings and hear more about it.
Apr. 17, 2012 5:48 am
*Sherri* - My mother was a LaChoy Chicken Chow Mein and Spaghetti-o's woman all the way. I can't even look at the stuff these days.
Apr. 18, 2012 8:23 pm
Maridele, that was a great blog with great memories and stories. My own paternal grandmother was the same, never saw her in pants a day in my life. I don't think she ever owned a pair. She was the have your hair done every Friday at 11:00 sharp at the salon, wear her dress with matching pumps, always had jewelry involving diamonds or other precious jewels, lived in a high rise in San Francisco, and didn't cook. Grampa did it. And every single Saturday evening at 7:00, Lawrence Welk was on. When they would come to visit, we were tortured with that, but......a line that Lawrence always used to say, I find myself saying to this day....kinda dumb, but you can't believe how many times it's appropriate to say, "Boy oh Boy, thata boy, he sure can dance"....
Apr. 19, 2012 10:35 am
Ah, memories of Lawrence Welk. Bobby (from the Mickey Mouse Club) and Cissy (and assorted other partners). Not sure what was more torture as a kid, LW or Hee Haw.
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About Me
I'm so glad to have the time to cook and bake again although I've got fewer to cook for now! Luckily DH's work cohorts love my food!
My favorite things to cook
I have rediscovered my love for cooking and baking now that I have time to do it again. I especially love making breads and rolls but have also tried to expand my horizons with savory items. I am a notorious carb-aholic.
My favorite family cooking traditions
We always had the tradition of pork and sauerkraut on New Years Day for luck. I always make Monkey Bread on Christmas morning (the kind with butterscotch pudding and frozen rolls). I try to make a nice somewhat fancy dinner for whatever family is available on Christmas Eve before church services.
My cooking triumphs
My one and only attempt at Thanksgiving dinner for the entire family went well.
My cooking tragedies
I really have no "tragedies" but I cannot get the hang of homemade biscuits.
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