Monday, October 25, 2010

The Kitchen Has Now Re-Opened!

Finally, after a long, long drought, I found a store -about 80 plus miles from where I live -that carries Pillsbury Rye Flour! And right now, as I am writing this post, I have a batch of "genuine" Swedish Limpa Rye sitting on my radiator, wrapped in wax paper, tee towels and a big blanket, so it will raise up nice and pretty, the way it's supposed to do!

It's been at least 2, probably closer to 3 years now, since I've been able to purchase GOOD rye flour! And this is something that really, really has had me very ticked off at not just Pillsbury but Gold Medal, King Arthur and Robin Hood Flour as well. Well, not the flour but the manufacturers of those rye flours at any rate.

I love -love, love, love -Swedish Limpa Rye bread and I just so happen to have a recipe too that is quite simple to make that was passed on to me via a cousin (who included the recipe in the cookbook she put together and gave Mandy for a wedding gift) and that cousin got it from yet another cousin who I figure got the recipe from her mother, who in turn no doubt, got the recipe from her mother and that person then responsible for this great, easy and delicious bread would then have been my great-grandmother! Confused? Don't worry about it. Just take my word for all of that stuff.

Anyway, a few months back, I was grumbling to a good friend from our church -who just happens to be a fantastic cook and excellent baker too -about the state of affairs for those of us who like rye bread with a nice soft texture and a mild, sweet flavor to it -like the Swedish Limpa delivers. Grumping because the only kind of rye flour one can purchase around here -or most anywhere now apparently - is the kind that is very coarsely ground and it just doesn't do the trick for Swedish Limpa Rye Bread.

Turns out, this lady had discovered a little store up in Kane, PA - Jack Bell's Meat and Poultry Shop -and he carries the soft textured rye flour -such as that which one used to be able to purchase and manufactured by all of the major flour makers. I vowed then that I had to make arrangements to get up to Kane -about 80 plus miles from here -and get me some of that good flour so I could make not just one but several batches then of Limpa Rye Bread!

And today was that day!

Kurt doesn't have school on Mondays and today, neither Mandy nor I had any appointments we had to tend to, so I suggested to her maybe we could take a spin up to Kane and see what they have at this store. Mandy often is up for a little "outing" and today -with nothing really hanging over our heads (Except that we had to be back home by 3:30 p.m. to get Maya off the school bus) -away we went!

The store was very easy to find and upon walking into it, I felt a bit transported in time back to the old general stores that used to exist here in this little village when I was a youngster.

The owner greeted us as we entered the place and in less than a minute's time, learned I was there in search of Pillsbury Rye Flour. He then pointed to an area at the bottom of a shelf right by where I was standing and there sat four big plastic bags of none other than Rye Flour!

I was in heaven!

After getting 3 or the 4 bags he had on the shelf, Mandy and I then got busy looking around at many of the other items he had for sale there. Lingonberries -mmmmm, made me hungry then to get some and come home and make a big pan of Panakaka (a very bland flavored baked custard that is excellent with lingonberries -or just about any other kind of berry-type fruit too -drizzled over the top of it. So, a jar of lingonberries went on the counter alongside my flour order. Then Mandy succumbed to his description of a jam they had there -homemade -and consisting of elderberries and peaches, so a jar of that went into the order too then.

After that, we made our way to the rear of the store and to the meat counter. Here again, I felt transported in time to the meat market in Jamestown, NY where my uncle worked for many, many years as the meatcutter there. The white front of the meat display cased and the glass that was slanted back to enable you to get a great view of the variety of meats on sale and I almost expected to have my late uncle step forward in his all white uniform, with his spiffy little white soda-jerk kind of hat and the apron that was blood-stained, yes, but yet, you knew implicitly that it was a clean as it could possibly be considering the kind of work being done there! Yeah, I was having those kinds of visions in my mind, ya know -pure sentimentality at its finest.

At the meat counter, I got a big package of one of my other favorite Swedish foods -potato sausage called "Korv." (Actually, I believe the o in the Korv should have some kind of dots over it to indicate the correct pronunciation but I have no clue how to make those symbols appear in my typing here.) My uncle used to always make the Korv sausage -especially at Christmas time when he would make an even larger than usual batch of the stuff. And I do love the flavor of this meat! Mandy, in the meantime, decided to try a package of Jack's homemade sausage scrapple -a meat delicacy that I guess you pretty much have to be from Pennsylvania originally to have a taste plus an understanding of the many ways you can serve and thus, eat scrapple. I'll not get into the arguments some may put forth about scrapple, what it is, what's in it, how to cook it, how to serve it -with syrup or jelly or ketchup or whatever your own personal preference may be but suffice it to say, Mandy and I both do enjoy a bit of scrapple from time to time!

And now, it's time for me to have my supper which tonight consists of a big pan of baked Swedish custard -i.e. Panakaka -but sadly, it will be eaten without the lingonberries I had in mind because some how or other, in the processing of our order, the owner apparently missed the jar of lingonberries I had put on the counter cause it wasn't packed in with all the other things we came home with.

However, I think I'll survive because Mandy just had a big serving of the custard and she said it was really good with the elderberry-peach preserves she had purchased.

Saved -in more ways than one today. Flour, Korv, rye bread gonna be baked in about an hour or two and now, some good old fashioned Panakaka.

Doesn't get any better than this, folks!

1 comment:

terri said...

That store sounds like the kind of place my sister and I would love to visit... very nostalgic.

And now I'm hungry, having read the descriptions of all those foods!