I just wanted to share the surprise parcel I received from my great aunt recently. A cardboard box came home with BH after he'd been to see her and all he knew were there were some 'bits and bobs ' that I might want. After digging through the many layers of newspapers this is what I found...
My Great Grandmas rolling pin!
BH couldn't quite work out why I was behaving as though I'd won the lottery. It was just a rolling pin after all, and one with a pretty extreme squeak at that! But this isn't just any rolling pin, and it wasn't just my Great Grannies either, but the rolling pin that I learnt to roll pastry with every Friday night as a little girl with my Great Auntie.
It was like biting into a Proustian Madelaine and being whisked back through the years in an instant. I had forgotten so much about those Friday nights that all flooded back. The two of us would squeeze into the tiny kitchen, me wrapped tightly in a flour dusted pinny and she directing proceedings from the well worn Bero book. We almost always baked the same things, jam tarts, coconut macaroons and of course the seasonal mince pies and fruit cakes. I don't actually remember us baking much else but I do know that we would occasionally experiment and then try out our produce on my Great Grandfather, who was more than happy to be our guinea pig.
It was my job to roll the pastry, and the rolling pin squeaked on every roll, the cause of much hilarity between the two of us. I look back now and know that Auntie P obviously finished the pastry off but still she made me feel as though I was in charge of it, I've also no doubt that the squeaky roller probably drove her crackers but she played along never the less - bless her!
I know we used the moulds occasionally for blancmanges and the other bits and bobs are all familiar, but nothing quite brought it back like the the squeaky roller! And when It did I looked around my own kitchen and realised how much I owe to those Friday nights, I store my flour the same way as her, I know how to make a macaroon in an egg cup and I do like a dusty pinny - dusty with flour that is!
Auntie P suggested that I might want it for my dresser, but I know it's got another job first - I've got two apprentice bakers who are quite ready for baking night and making some memories of our own!