Let it roll baby!!

The holidays are a time for getting together with family; it’s a great time of year.  But there are always those little things about our families that still make us smile or sometimes cringe.  It may be that “crazy uncle/aunt/sister/brother” etc. or a wacky dish/meal or clothing, but we all seem to have them.

Thanksgiving is a good example for me.  On the times when we go to my sister’s house for Thanksgiving, we usually ask my sister what we can bring to help out.  She will have a short list, but not matter what else is on the list “Parker House rolls” is always on it.

TraditionalIf you’re scratching your head about the above reference, you’re not alone; the first time it was mentioned to me I did the same thing.  If you don’t live in New England or a diehard Food Network fan you probably don’t know what those are like I did the first time.  The truth is that the name has become a generic reference to a dinner roll.  But I didn’t know that the first time I encountered the name.

So like a good village idiot, I hit the supermarket looking for the “Parker House” rolls.  Can you guess what happened?  I got the “Deer in the headlights” look from every market employee I asked.  Eventually, I gave my sister a call and told her the trouble I was having finding them.  After she stopped laughing, it took a couple of minutes, she explained my mistake.  DUH!!!!!

Alton Brown versionThat was some years ago.  Today, whenever my sister is hosting Thanksgiving she tells whomever to bring “Parker House Rolls.”  The fact that she could simply say, “dinner rolls” doesn’t even occur to her.  Why?  I couldn’t tell you; it’s not like we’re from New England.  But whenever she hosts, it throws whoever has the job of getting the rolls into a frenzy the first time.  After it’s been your turn to be the victim, it’s funny as hell watching the next.  Sure she could simply say dinner rolls; but where’s the fun in that?  Watching the frantic dash for “Parker House Rolls” is kind of funny.