when i was a child, my father's mother lived close by and i'd often walk to her house. food was important there and she was always cooking and baking. she'd feed me ginger ale floats with vanilla ice cream and tell me that i'd remember her when she was gone because of them. i do have a lot of food-related memories of her - she taught me how to measure shortening by putting water in a measuring cup and then adding the crisco. she always let me sift the flour and mix with the egg beater. i make her gingersnaps at christmastime.
as i worked in my own kitchen this afternoon, a forgotten memory came spilling back to me. in my grandmother's refrigerator there was always a partially eaten cold chicken, leftovers sitting on a
flowered plate in the middle of a silvery gelatinous pool of congealed juices. i remember thinking it was one of the most disgusting foods i'd ever laid eyes on. i couldn't bear to touch the quivering jellied mass or eat the slimy chicken. it was just too gross. yet here i was today, the grandmother myself, shredding leftover cold chicken and scraping that same goo from one of my own plates to add to the stock to make soup for my granddaughter's dinner. i've come full circle!