I've mentioned on more than one occasion my mother was not a good cook, except pot roast on Sunday.
I've spent most of my adult life avoiding cooking, too, but there was a ten year stretch when I did cook.
I was married, and my husband expected three meals a day. Yes, he came home for lunch. There were kids to feed, too.
My mother-in-law was an exquisite cook. Standing roast beef on Christmas Eve. You should have been there. I learned more about cooking from her than I learned in the kitchen of my childhood.
My memory of eggs at home is scrambled eggs, served for dinner, with spinach. (Mine went under the table.)
I recall fried eggs as an outdoor camping dish, my brothers frying a lot of bacon and throwing in eggs at the end, while I toasted bread in a toaster that fit over another burner. It was a three ring Coleman, and I know a pot of coffee was on the third ring.
Fried eggs as an indoor breakfast dish did not cross my mind until my husband requested them. He watched from the dining card table in our miniscule apartment kitchen, and I do recall the instant I had the eggs nicely in the skillet he was at my shoulder, adding a tablespoon of water and clapping a lid on. OK, that’s how you fry eggs indoors.
My grandmother also was an excellent cook, and gave me some cookbooks. They were old, from the beginning of her marriage, now a hundred years ago. These actually were “housekeeping” books, and I could read about running a vacuum cleaner and dusting, where my skills were adequate.
The directions for frying eggs were so ludicrous I shared them with some other young wives at work, in the break room. Can you believe, you crack the egg into hot bacon grease, and then you can spoon the hot grease over the egg to hasten the cooking.
Silence. “Well, that’s what I do. How do you fry an egg?” from a person l admired. I was so tongue tied by the realization that exploded in my mind I could not speak. First, my fried eggs actually were “fried” in water. Second, do not denigrate anything I did not understand well enough to have an opinion.
I never answered Meg’s question and the topic turned, of course. At my first opportunity I asked my mother-in-law, what’s that called, how you make eggs. “Oh, they’re steamed, my dear.”
I still have fried egg moments.