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In This Issue:

Remembering 9-11—Never Forget!
I Am an American!
Labor Day Feast
Have I Told You Lately That I Love You?
Amorous Almonds? . . . Promised Potency! reprinted in Click2Asia

It Happened with the Can

There are many old wives tales, and some young ones too, about the beginning of what we refer to fast food. One could argue that the butter churn, a swing away, or fireplace pot holder were not only life savers, but time savers. Naw, not enough to really brag about. There is at least one documented invention that has come to be known as THE KEY TO THE MODERN KITCHEN. It was the invention of the can opener by Ezra Warner, in 1858.

That we take such modern conveniences for granted is of little notice in today's modern kitchen. The first practical can opener was developed 50 years after the birth of the metal can. Canned food was invented as a space saver and food preservation technique by the British Navy in 1813. The early cans were made of solid iron, rather inconvenient as the cans usually weighed more than their contents! The inventor, Peter Durand, was a crafty dude indeed. Not a real visionary, however, as he missed one small detail. He figured out how to seal food into cans, but gave little thought to how to get that stuff out of his contraption!

His initial instructions read: "Cut round the top near the outer edge with a chisel and hammer." Whoa... It was only when much thinner steel cans came into vogue in the 1860s could a can opener be useful. The first patented can opener was issued in 1858, devised by our boy Ezra Warner of Waterbury, Connecticut, to resembled a heavy bent sickle. The intent was to drive the blade into the can's rim, then jimmy it around its edge. It really wasn't something that fit into the kitchen drawer, which is why it never left the local grocery store. The store clerk had to open each and every can before it left the counter!

The innovation of the modern can opener had rather humble beginning indeed, and it wasn't until a cutting wheel that rolled around the rim was invented by William Lyman of the United States in 1870 that it became a household item. The only change from the original crude but brilliant design was introduced by the Star Can Company of San Francisco in 1925, with the addition of a serrated rotation wheel.

Take away the fancy shaped carriers, wall attachments, colors and price, the basic principle continues to be used on almost every modern can opener used in our fancy pansy kitchens today. The first electric can opener, introduced in December 1931, was just a wire or two away from it's ancestor. Later, pull-open, or early pop tops, were patented by Ermal Fraze of Ohio, and hit the market in 1966.

Let's think of Ezra occasionally just to remember from whence we came.

It really didn't happen with the can . . .it happened with the can opener! :)

I Am an American!
I was born an American. Unlike my grandparents, I was born in the greatest nation in the history of the world. Being born here didn't make me a real American. That took time.

I became an American, slowly and decisively over my entire life. I learned to be an American, through experiences, and knowledge, and witness. I remember moments in my life that brought me to the realization that being born here, in America, is one of the the greatest blessing I had been given.

As a young boy, I watched as my 92 year old great grandfather (an immigrant from the bowels of depravity in Italy), as he stood in a crowded church basement and took an oath, and recited the Pledge of Allegiance to this beloved country to finally become a citizen of the United States of America. For him, becoming a real member of this wonderful country was the culmination of a lifetime of work, struggle and hope, and prayers.


Labor Day Feast
Laborless Day Buttermilk Fried Chicken

This is downright great food, no matter where your from, or going!

    2 cups all-purpose flour
    1 Tbs. salt
    1 tsp. paprika
    1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
    1 cup buttermilk
    1 tsp. baking powder
    3 lb. chicken pieces, skinned
    Canola oil

1. Combine first 4 ingredients in a plastic or paper bag; shake to mix and set aside.
2. Combine buttermilk and baking powder in a bowl; mix well.
3. Dip 2 pieces of chicken in buttermilk mixture; place in bag and shake to coat. Repeat with remaining chicken.
4. Place in a shallow pan; cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour.
5. Heat 1-inch of oil in a large cast iron or electric skillet to 325 degrees*, add chicken, and fry 15 minutes.
Turn, cover, and fry 15 more minutes. Do not raise lid on pan.

*For the true Southern Fried texture, keep the oil temperature between 300 and 325 degrees F.

Serves 6.

more recipes

World Fabulous Corn Bread
Batter-up Green Beans
Great Grandma's Potato Salad
Italian Sesame Cookies
Fresh Orange Juice Drops

Have I Told You Lately . . .
Have I told you lately that I love you . . .

How is it that we can go through life taking for granted all of those wonderful people that make life worth living, without ever telling them?

How could we be so distracted that we overlook the importance of the
devotion, caring, and warmth that our loved ones provide?

What would you do if tomorrow they were simply gone, vanished . . . forever . . .? How would you feel? What was the last thing you said to them? What would you say to bring them back? What would you do differently?

What if I told you that it isn't too late to say what you really feel to all of the special people that make such a difference in your world . . .

. . . and to all of those special souls that are waiting for us . . .

Tell them . . . tell them now . . .

Have I told you.. how much I love you . . .

Well, just in case . . . I'm telling you now . . . I love you . . . sealed with a kiss.

* * *

I went to the airport today to drop off my teenage son, just as I have done so often. He is growing up so fast, I had to smile as he blushed when I hugged and kissed him and said, "I LOVE YOU MY BOY."

I don't care, he can puke for all I care . . . ha! It's the price he has to pay for having an old Italian dad.

He gathered up his luggage and hurried down the long concourse . . . and before he was completely gone from sight, he stopped and turned, and a weak smile came across that beautiful face. He waved once more and his mouth whispered "I LOVE YOU DAD" . . . and I thought I saw a tear in his eye. I can't be sure, because my eyes were tearing . . .

It is only for a weekend, but . . . for just an instance . . . Dear God bring him home safely.

©2003 Morelli Publishing
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