Saturday, September 27, 2008

Ancient Amish Secret Ingredient

Well friends and neighbors I have just come back from a week of vacation, err, intensive research that is, in Lancaster County PA. And I am here to tell you the real secret of the Amish. Now lets not kid ourselves, the Amish do live with out many of the modern conveniences most folks consider necessities, like electricity and cars. And yes, the do travel about on bicycles, scooters, foot, and horse and buggy. The Amish also eat, a lot. I personally witnessed a petit young woman eat a rather large sausage, potatoes, cabbage, a couple of large rolls with butter and jam, a large whoopee pie and a quart of home-made root beer. She didn't even burp. After which she promptly went back to work. Had I eaten that much I would have needed a nap. Rather than approach the young woman I asked an Amish Matron, who was not so petit, what made Amish cooking so good. At first she looked at me with the kind of look a woman gives a man when he has said the wrong thing, then she softened, a little. "Young English", she said with a bit of accent, "Care we, for them that our cooking eat". After which she turned her attention to things far more pressing then my questions. (PA Dutch Grammar can be exemplified by the following sentence. Johnny run the stairs up, looked the window out, and saw the street coming down with the soldiers.) Like most things Amish there were no frills, or fancy explanations, just the simple truth. The people who are providing the food, care about what it is they are feeding the people who eat it. A quick glance at the ingredient list of Amish goods is a lesson too. I am a big fan of the potato chips, Ingredients; Potatoes, lard, salt. Pretzels, Ingredients - flour, water, salt. The bread - flour, milk, butter, salt. All made daily. You won't find any polysorbate, red dye number 6 or any other unpronounceable ingredient. Just real food, made by people who care.

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