Mack's Corner

This Week

Free Stretch

I used to work for a small computer store. There were only 5 of us so we all pretty much did a little bit of everything. I mostly wrote custom programs and fixed computers. A friend of mine called me one Saturday and asked if I would come look at his computer. I said "Sure". I fixed computers all the time for friends. The computer was kinda old and slow, so it took most of the day to fix it, I did a lot of waiting. When I finished he said "Mack, I want to pay you for doing this." I said "No you don't need to pay me." … He said "yeah I'm going to pay you and I'm going to pay you what you would charge anyone else". I knew this would go on forever so instead of going back and forth over it I said "OK, I usually charge $150 and hour (which was true) and I've been here 6 hours so you owe me $900 or it can be free, whichever you want." After he started breathing again he said "aaaaa aaa well aaa Can I get you a Coke?" … "sure that would be nice." ....Free is good...

When I'm good My sister makes me a "Sticky Pecan Cake", it's an old family recipe. My grandmother and my great aunt used to wrestle over who made the best one, the only difference was one was cooked longer, didn't matter to me. My mom tried to make one for my dad's birthday a few times but she never pulled it off, it would always stick in the pan or be too gooey in the middle. That never bothered me..."Here take this someplace, it looks terrible" ... "sure mom, I'll get rid of it for you". There were some glass cake pans that were handed down from generation to generation that were said to make the sticking problem go away and you were supposed to steam the cake to cook it so everyone had an electric roaster. You could put water in the bottom and get the steam effect. I made one a few times: get a spring-form pan, spray it with Pam, put all the batter in, and throw it in the oven. Worked great, tastes just like my great aunt's, jumped right out of the pan, I don't get why it's so hard and why you need all that stuff. The one my sister makes is always frozen. She makes them and freezes them, then gives them out later. It's kinda dense anyway, so when it's frozen it's like concrete. I really like it frozen. I never let it thaw out. So when you break off a big chunk it's like having 42 pieces of gum in your mouth, frozen. I don't break any teeth or anything, but I've got stretch marks. It usually takes a knife and a hammer and a few hours, but it's great, it's really great! Every bite …..

God's like that, he likes to stretch us, make us work for something we love, make us love things he loves. The cool part is that it's all free, he gives us everything we need to stretch and grow and understand but there's no way we can pay him back, so it's free. The best thing we can do is take a bite and pass it around.

I wonder where I put my Ginsu knife, frozen Sticky Pecan cake would be good for dinner, my wife hates it when I don't cut slices off, says I look funny holding the cake with my feet. What you gonna do...


Cooking 220 - 2 pans, 2 burners, 20 minutes:

With all the great summer fruit still out there I wanted to give you a great fruit recipe that's easy and I bet you've never made it before. A Clafouti.
This is a fancy classic French dessert, but it's really easy to make. This recipe calls for cherries, but you could use strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, any kind of whole berry. You could also use cut up plums or peaches, bananas, even apples if you cooked them a little first …

Cherry Clafouti from the New York Times

1 1/2 pounds (about 5 cups) fresh ripe cherries, stemmed and pitted

6 tablespoons sugar

3 large eggs

2 tsp vanilla

Pinch of salt

2/3 cup sifted unbleached all-purpose flour

3/4 cup low-fat yogurt

2 tablespoons milk

2 teaspoons confectioners' sugar (optional)

1. Toss the cherries with 2 tablespoons of the sugar, and let sit for 30 minutes. Drain over a bowl. Keep the juice!

2. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Butter a 10- or 10 1/2-inch ceramic tart pan or clafouti dish. Fill the dish with the drained cherries.

3. In a medium bowl, beat the eggs with the remaining sugar and the vanilla. Add the salt and the liquid from the cherries, and combine well.
Slowly beat in the flour, and whisk until smooth. Add the yogurt and milk, and combine well. Pour over the cherries, scraping out all of the batter with a rubber spatula.

4. Bake in the preheated oven for 30 to 40 minutes until the top is browned and the clafouti is firm and puffed. Press gently on the top in the middle to see if it's firm. If not, return to the oven for five minutes.

5. Remove from the oven and cool on a rack. When the clafouti is warm or cool, sift on the powdered sugar. Serve warm or at room temperature. Serves eight.

This is also great for breakfast the next morning … This is also another thing the kids can help you make… Summer fun!


How about saving a kid's life!!

When you give Platelets it's like giving St Jude $700 - $1000. If we don't give them, they have to buy them.

Giving Platelets is like giving blood, it just takes longer (1 1/2 hours) and you get all of your blood back (so you can do it every week if you want) . I know it's a long trip to go all the way down to St Jude, but you may be saving a kid's life . plus you get to watch a movie while you're there. Call Kim at 901.595.2024 and she'll setup an appointment and treat you like family. Just tell her you're from Hope.

Directions: From Poplar, turn north on Third Street, then right on Lauderdale/Jackson Ave (first right after you go under the expressway). Enter through the north guard gate (you'll see the Danny Thomas Pavilion. Gold top).

Tell the guard at the gate that you are here to donate blood. The guard will instruct you where to park. You will then enter the hospital by the red side door closest to the blood donor parking lot. The Blood Donor Center is in the southwest corner of the hospital on the ground floor.

Appointment times are generally available Monday through Friday from 8:00am to 4:00pm. Except on Tuesdays they start at 9:15am.

See you this weekend. Bring a friend. It's going to be great!!!



Posted by Mack Oates at 11:23 AM