Remember Your Roots and Keep Them Colored

Butter is my best friend

By Trena Eiden
Posted 3/9/21

I’m a butter lover and the creamy, slightly salty deliciousness is thickly spread on almost everything I eat and I feel fine about it. I don’t measure it or fret if it’s too much. I …

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Remember Your Roots and Keep Them Colored

Butter is my best friend

Posted

I’m a butter lover and the creamy, slightly salty deliciousness is thickly spread on almost everything I eat and I feel fine about it. I don’t measure it or fret if it’s too much. I just look at what it could fit with and act accordingly.

Yeast rolls? Sure thing. Baked potatoes? Absolutely. Veggies? Oh yeah, plop and stir. I slather it on like a 1960s teenager applying baby oil at the beach. 

The reason I eat butter instead of margarine is simple: Margarine has a disgusting flavor at its very best. I read that margarine shares 27 ingredients with paint. Is this true? No, margarine only has eight ingredients and though it shares the flavor of a paint chip, it’s not even close — paint is much tastier.

Another point to ponder is whether margarine is one molecule away from plastic like we’ve read. No again, but it goes to show, there are like-minded others who find margarine despicable, to the point of fabricating tales. 

My doctor set me up with a dietitian who mentioned that maybe I shouldn’t eat as much butter as I do, because butter derives virtually all of its calories from fat. I momentarily thought about this then asked, “Well, what about my chubby cheeks?” Caught off guard, and seeming puzzled and slightly embarrassed, she chortled, “What?” I said, “My chubby cheeks. I have them at both ends and they’re mostly made of butter so I’m pretty sure I couldn’t cut back.”

Desperate to remain professional, she chose to ignore me and instead, said, “If we broke it down, one tablespoon of butter contains around 100 calories. By comparison, you could eat a cup, wait, over a cup, 1.25 cups, of blueberries for the same amount of calories, plus get fiber and antioxidants.”

I remained unmoved as I unhappily imagined smashing blueberries over my seafood platter. 

The nutritionist went on: “Butter is a better choice than margarine by far but there are other alternatives, like olive or avocado oil.” Then she asked, “Do you like avocados?” I had to admit that I did, then made a face and said, “But I have trouble thinking my morning toast would be happy with smashed avocados spread under my apple butter. I mean, brown and green together? That would be about as appetizing as eating dinner while staring into an outhouse’s two-holer.”

Biting her lip, and noticeably perspiring, she said, “The bottom line is, if you weren’t already eating butter, I’d tell you not to start. Since you like it, I’d suggest you stick to no more than a tablespoon a day.”

A tablespoon a day? She was talking to the Butter Queen. How to make her understand? I smiled and attempted to not sound kookier than she already thought I was for not agreeing with her. “Last spring I watched a cow calving while lying in the hay on the feed line. She’d been eating and was now chewing her cud.” Trying not to raise my voice while raising my voice, I squawked, “Eating while giving birth! That’s essentially me with butter. I would do that. I probably did do that!” Then to soften my weirdness, I gave her a smile and said, “You’ve done your job, but I’m a butter bestie and I eat it on anything as thick as the law will allow.”

She tried to smile, and did get a woeful little twinge around her mouth. As I exited, I thought I saw a wistful look in her eyes and figured that about now this trained specialist wondered if she should have listened to her mother and become a nice secretary for a lumber company in Terre Haute. 

Our daughter was home for a few days and while I did yard work, she put a wire brush to good use on an old shed. That afternoon we painted it together — and when I say, “together” I mean she painted and I gave orders. Most of my requests had to do with how dry the wood was, so I repeatedly insisted, “Use more paint; it’s soaking it up; you’ve got to load your brush.” She was an obedient trooper, did a fine job and never once got exasperated.

That night when her dad got home, he asked how the day’s work had gone. Raising her eyebrows and jerking her thumb in my direction, she observed, “Well, it’s basically like this: Mama paints like she eats butter and her motto is, ‘More is better.’”

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