[Sca-cooks] OOP: NY Times article on State Fair food competitions

Johnna Holloway johnna at sitka.engin.umich.edu
Wed Aug 16 06:18:02 PDT 2006

I am sure that part of the problem is the fact that farm wives have
jobs off the farm. (For that matter many farmers these days hold
down full-time jobs off the farm and do the farm after work and on
weekends.) My grandmother canned obsessively. She also kept a garden
that ran into acres and they would travel to various orchards and buy
fruits to can and freeze. It was a way of life and for those that made 
it through
the depression it was second nature. (She never owned an electric modern 
washer or
dryer either.)
My mother was an RN, so she never gardened nor canned. Between commuting 
to work
and back plus never getting off on time or doing partial second shifts 
and being
on-call on days off, she didn't have the time to can. You'd often find 
her in the
field helping my dad with harvesting or hauling in or planting though.

Those in town don't have the big gardens anymore either. Competing in the
fairs is also akin to being in A&S. It takes awhile to learn what the 
judges want
to see. I used to get asked to judge in 4-H competitions. It's an odd 
We always wanted to see cookies that filled the plates. They had to be 
the same size
and the same color. They had to crumble just right.
This meant that maybe the entrant had to often bake 3 or 4 batches
to get that perfect 3 cookies to put on that 6 inch plate.
I have thought about entering the local community fair here in Chelsea,
but it's also the week before school and that's always a very busy week.
They actually still select a Homemaker of the Year in this town, based upon
things like cooking and canning and sewing.


Phil Troy / G. Tacitus Adamantius wrote:
> I was intrigued by the statement that the people that have first-hand  
> knowledge on how to pickle a peach are all dying off...
> Adamantius

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