Double dumplin’s make great holiday

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 1, 2010

This year’s Thanksgiving dinner was one of the best that I have ever put in my mouth.

It was just fantastic.

There was ham, pecan and pumpkin pies courtesy of my sister-in-law and cornbread dressing, peas, mashed potatoes and sweet potatoes thanks to my mother.

I also contributed the turnips, but that was only because my mother called me at 8 a.m. panicking because we didn’t have anything green on the table; however, my best contribution was chicken and dumplings.

I’m quite proud of those things.

Since there was plenty time to spare between my 8 a.m. wake up call and the noon lunch hour, I thought it would opportune time to show the girls how it was done.

One by one, I gathered the ingredients on the bar.

Flour? Check.

Salt? Check.

Oil? Check.

“Momma, what ‘bout the measuring cup? I dump the measuring cup,” the littlest one said. She was the only dumplin’ game enough to watch me make some dumplin’s.

My grandmother once told me that God intended measuring cups for people who had to read to cook, a sentiment I relayed to her.

“Well, we ain’t got no book,” she said.

“Don’t have ‘any’ book,” I corrected. “And that’s because it’s in my head.”

She eyed me suspiciously.

“I don’t believe that,” she said.

“It’s true. We call it memorizing the recipe.”

And my smart girl said, “You mean rememorizing? I know that. Like I rememorize where I left my cup even after I go to bed and wake back up.”

“Yep. Exactly.”

By now, the flour and such was in the bowl; the towel spread across the counter and the first glob of dough ready to roll.

When the rolling pin came out, the second dumplin’ – the middle one who never misses an opportunity to eat – appeared.

“I do that,” she said, eyeball to eyeball as her hand crept inside the dough-filled bowl. “I can. I can do that. You let me and I show you. Promise.”

“What you need to do is get your nasty hand out of my bowl,” I said. “Go wash up and you can help.”

It wasn’t long before she was back; the broth was boiling, and the pot was filled with the best set of dumplings one ever would want to put in one’s mouth.

And all it took was a bit of all purpose floor, a bit of salt and a nice dose of cooking oil. All these years, I thought that I hadn’t been putting enough oil in those things, but it turns out that all they needed to be perfect was a little help from two little dumplin’s.