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Jim's Jottings

A box of cereal doesn't need a sprig of parsley

March 19, 2014 - Why do all the hour-long news shows feel they have to have a segment on cooking? Maybe only the Fox News Channel does it, but all the other channels are liberal, and I ain't so sure maybe they aren't (doing cooking shows).

But I do have opinions about cooking shows, and here are a couple of them.

These shows concentrate on numbers and colors.

By the time the show is over enough ingredients have been added to cancel the various spices deemed vital to the cook.

Then there's the vital need for color.

Ya' gotta' have two or three colors to make it eye appealing. Spices for the nose appeal, color for our eyes.

Personally, I think many cooks have cravings to accommodate all our senses except our taste buds and stomachs. A box of cereal doesn't need a sprig of parsley color in it.

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• For every person with a spark of genius there's a hundred with an ignition problem.

• Noise proves nothing. Often a hen who as merely laid an egg will cackle as if she had laid an asteroid.

• Fools and wise men are equally harmless. It is the half-fool and half-wise who are dangerous. .

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I really wanted to write more about cooking this week.

My favorite food during the depression days of the 1930's was chicken. Not just any cut of chicken, no, no, no. My favorite parts were the feet.

We lived on farms back then, and Dad loved raising pigs and chickens. He kept an incubator nearby, and he hatched his own eggs so we always had chickens.

Plucking them brought their feet into my life.

We always saved cleaning them until last. They were fun.

When properly scalded the skin above the feet slides off slicker'n a banana peel. Once this is done, you skin each toe separately.

When you get to the nail, you snap it backward with a flick of the wrist, and the nail pops off. Getting a loud pop from the nail was the challenge.

Of course, we cut off the nail before Mother cooked the legs with feet. She usually boiled the feet then put them in the gravy.

When possible I'd get to the bowl of gravy first and fish out all the feet.

Eating well-cooked feet is a little like eating watermelon. You put the whole foot in your mouth, and manipulate your tongue to separate the meat from those little bones in each toe, and spit them out like watermelon seeds.

My Hazel never cooked chicken feet for me.

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• Another observation from this cook – always pour some sauce on any concoction you prepare for guests. Then watch their faces as they try to look satisfied.

• I wonder if Snowden, the technical genius, could give me just one winning Lotto number in advance of a drawing?

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A charity roast of Jim Sherman, Sr., is Saturday April 12 , starting at 6 p.m. Tickets are $70 each or $130 a couple. Seating is limited to 250 and includes your choice of three meal options, prime rib, bone-in pork loin or salmon filet. Cash bar at 6; dinner at 7 p.m.

The roast is at Boulder Pointe Conference Center, 1 Champions Circle in Oxford. You are encouraged to mail checks and dinner choices to the Rotary Club of Oxford, PO Box 347, Oxford, MI 48371.

Jim Sherman, Sr. is president of Sherman Publications, Inc. He has penned "Jim's Jottings" since 1955.
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