Saturday, July 20, 2013

In Which Heaven Sends Me a New Electric Skillet

This afternoon the girls and I hopped over to a neighbor's house to help out. Lisa was finishing going through the last of her parents things before hosting an estate sale, and mostly just needed help moving boxes of things up and down the stairs, since she has a bad ankle.


We were almost done, when Clara came in with controlled excitement and said, 'I've found a new Roberta. In the basement."

Roberta was our much-loved electric skillet, an inheritance from my grandmother. Somehow Roberta embodied Nanny's essence to me in a way that no other object ever has. But we loved her too much, I guess, and she fell apart last year.


To have a new one? Such a treat. I think it's exactly the same vintage, in excellent condition. This seriously warms the cockles of my heart. So glad Lisa sold her to me.

16 comments:

Julian said...

I agree... it WAS a gift from heaven;). Christina

Lisa said...

So, your grandmother's name was Roberta? That's cute. I've been wanting an electric skillet for ages, but they seem to be mostly with the nonstick coating - I'm not sure I want that. It will last longer without it, right? So, I'll keep looking; or just buck up and spend lots on an expensive one.

Lisateresa

Sarah said...

Now why has it never occurred to me to name my most-used kitchen tools? I named my car. Never yet my frying pans. But I think this practice definitely adds charm to the kitchen. What a lovely story!

Elaine said...

There are some things that do seem to capture the essence of love and hospitality.
When we cleaned out the family home, Mom couldn't quite understand the carrying on over who took which iced tea pitcher, or a particular bowl or dish. We still laugh that some folks might fight for the silver but we each needed a piece of crockery! Each had a history of family meals shared with love.
I'm so glad you not only found a new Roberta but know your children are living in the heritage of so much love.

Farrah said...

Yay!

My MIL that passed away in May regularly used her electric skillet but I've never used or owned one. What is its benefits?

Rebecca said...

And you know, I think fried stuff gets a better crust in an electric skillet. I'm on the look-out for just such a one.

The Hobbit said...

I had to chuckle when I read today's post. I haad a similar skillet years ago and used it almost daily.I doubt I would have had such a love of cooking if it wasn't for that skillet. Sadly mine also took that mournful trip to kitchen heaven.I need to keep an eye out for another surviving skillet. Oh how I would love to give it a new home.

Mallorie said...

This is off topic, but I had to tell you. We started attending a new church a few weeks ago and I am quite certain that Clara's long lost identical twin sister sings in the choir. I think she has noticed me studying her face. I can't help it, the resemblance is uncanny. Or does Clara make it out to California very often....on Sundays perhaps?

Anna said...

Actually, Roberta came by her name through a cookbook from the thrift store :"The Complete Electric Skillet-Frypan Cookbook", by Roberta Ames.

Farrah, they make a nice even heat and hold a lot. You can turn it way down without worrying that the gas flame will go out.

Eva Girl said...

My Mom loves hers and I remember her making the most delicious donuts with it...good old memories : )

maven said...

I love those pans! I am on my second one, too - the first one came from my mother and the second one (exactly like it) came from my mother-in-law. Apparently, those electric skillets were the go-to gift for gals married in 1953. (If you haven't already disposed of it, you may want to unscrew and save the legs of your first skillet. The legs were what originally broke on my first skillet and I had a hard time finding a replacement . That early plastic was somewhat fragile.) Happy cooking!

Anonymous said...

This is an amazing tool I've never heard of. I'm putting it right next to pressure cooker on my list of requested kitchen tools!

Anonymous said...

Glad you all found your new Roberta. Now I'm going to be the only sourpuss of the group and say that if you all were carrying and hauling and helping this lady, the least she could have done is to have given you the skillet!

Anna said...

Oh, no, she tried to give me two gorgeous midnight blue vintage suitcases for free but I insisted on paying for everything--they were such treasures! Bella immediately declared that as it was so close to her birthday they ought to be HER suitcases, and she cleaned them up and packed them for camp later that day.

M said...

That looks like my mom's first electric skillet, filled with find memories of Saturday morning bacon and eggs, and Sunday Dinner pot roast. Now I'm hungry!

Roberta said...

how funny, my name is Roberta and I know a small handful of people who share my name,sometimes it's the name of a dorky character on some movie or sitcom...never before have I shared it with a skillet. :)

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