The taste of buttermilk

     Time and again, their voices soft with childhood, life story clients have told me what a wonderful treat buttermilk was.

     Their eyes sparkle, and they lean toward me as they try, each in their turn, to convince me that the thick white beverage with yellow butter floating in the cream, was the most delightful treat.

     Jeannie’s mother would give her a pail and send her to fetch buttermilk from the dairy. So across the bridge over the pond and down the road Jeannie and her friend would walk. Jeannie’s uncle worked at the dairy and he would oblige the girls with a pail of milk which they would go sit on the corner and drink down to the last succulent drop. Then, they’d return to the dairy, pay their 50 cents and return with a pail of buttermilk for Jeannie’s mother to use to make, “the best biscuits.”

     “Buttermilk today does not compare,” Jeannie said.

     Admittedly, I have never liked the taste or smell of buttermilk, yet clients and acquaintances of a certain age, salivate and lick their lips at the memory of this drink from days of yore.

     When I told two other clients I was on the lookout for fresh buttermilk, the both scoffed at the notice of my finding anything that compared with the memory of their taste buds.

     “You’re going to bring me fresh buttermilk? Do you know any dairymen? In Payson? Ha!” Frieda laughed.

     I am looking. Vita Mart sells products from an organic dairy. Maybe I will get lucky.

     A recent veteran of a diet that worked, I still consider myself a foodie.

     When you are writing your story, incorporate, where appropriate, how food was a part of your life, how it tasted, how it made you feel.

     Some tidbits to get your creative juices flowing:

  • Did you ever cook with your mother? Grandmother? Child?
  • What is your favorite food?
  •                                 Do you make it yourself?
  •                                 Is there a ritual to eating it?
  •                                 Why does it taste so good?
  • Is there an entrée or vegetable you detest?
  •                                 When did you first eat it?
  •                                 Did someone make you eat it?
  •                                 What made it icky? Flavor? Texture? Odor? Looked unappetizing?
  • Were family dinners and all-out affair?
  • Who taught you to set the table?
  • Do your parties revolve around people or food?

Remember, keyboards do not react well to spilt buttermilk.

Happy writing!




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