This morning, while I was standing in the kitchen putting together some scones (pronounced /skahns/, because they're a Canadian recipe), I was reminded once again of how much of what I do in the kitchen comes from my mom.
I remember being a kid and having the hardest time figuring out the whole "grease and flour the pan" thing. I simply couldn't get a feel for whether or not there was enough grease on the pan. I'd toss the flour in and shake it around and I'd either end up with greasy floury mounds, or patches where absolutely nothing stuck.
So I got into the habit of greasing a pan (using "margarine papers"), then walking over to my mother and saying "Is this enough?" She's drag a finger across the pan and either say "yes" or "no" - usually, in those days, "no." So I'd go back and re-grease and then flour and go on. And, eventually, I figured out what I was doing.
Today, as I was doing some baking, I greased a couple of pans and tossed flour on them and shook it all around and then pounded out the excess onto the board I was using to roll things out. They both looked nicely evenly covered. And I only got a little flour on the counter.
Christopher doesn't use margarine papers to grease pans. In his mom's kitchen, he grew up using sprays (like "Pam"), and so he looked at me kind of oddly when I did it the first time around him. He's gotten used to it (mostly), although I know that he'd prefer I didn't get flour everywhere during the "removing the excess" step.
So, in the column of "things I learned from my mother" I'm going to add "tactile cooking skills."
Although, the contact burn I got on my arm today from bonking myself with a pan? That's totally me.