It was The Bowl. Large and glass. It has markings on the side for measuring purposes, a handle and a small spout for pouring. I’ve never seen a bowl quite like it. It was always the perfect size no matter what we were baking.
We use it for everything. Every time I cook, I grab that handle and pull it out of the cabinet. Memories of ramen noodles and brownies and cheesecake and pasta salad topple from it. I think of learning to crack eggs against its lip. My mother telling me not to stir too quickly or it would splatter and then helping me clean it up when I inevitably did. Stealing chocolate chips or licks of frosting when she wasn’t looking.
Often if I was otherwise occupied and mother was cooking, as she put the treats on a pan and into the oven, she would call me. I would hurry down the stairs and lick the bits that inevitably escaped the spatula to hide along the lip. Dipping my finger into cookie dough or brownie batter, that she obviously had taken care to leave plenty of.
I learned to cook in that bowl. With my mother at my side. I made brownies with four times as much water as necessary, turning them into chocolate soup that was completely un-usable. I suggested making four batches of brownies out of it but that was not considered at all. But I also produced many edible creations.
In that bowl, is held a mixture of my childhood. Of afternoons with sunlight spilling in the kitchen windows. Of learning how to make balls of cookie dough and to substitute and to test that food is warm enough. Of laughing with my mother and spending hours talking to her as we sat on the floor, stirring away in that big bowl. Of being with my sisters, eating desserts warm from the oven.
Because, in that bowl we cooked more than cookies, we made a lifetime of memories and joy.