You’re wrong, Joe!

So writes Anna.

My grandmother was a mountain woman from West Virginia who never, ever washed her pans. She swore that soap ruined the surfaces of her pans and I grew up learning never to question grandma. If she said it, it was true.

Anna, far be it from me to question received wisdom. However I’ll ask that you consider one or two things. First, having lived in Kentucky for ten years I’ve learned that one reason most mountain people didn’t wash their pans was because it was a long traipse from the hilltop down to the creek to fetch water for a wash-up. Not something people with a full belly wanted to do after dinner.

But more importantly, mountain people back in the day made their own soap, and it was lye-based. Lye is very different from the detergents found in modern dish soaps, and it corrodes seasoning. So given where she lived and what she likely used for washing, she was exactly right. But as long as you stick to Ajax, you’ll be fine. Thanks for a great comment!


2 thoughts on “You’re wrong, Joe!”

  1. Hi Joe,
    I have made your Kolaczki Recipe for my son’s wedding in July and now for Christmas! Best I have every had. I had 4 different recipes for Lady Lock cookies, after trying three of them and being disappointed in the dough texture, I replaced the dough with your recipe for Kolaczki! EXCELLENT!! I will use this recipe from now on for my Lady Locks as well as Polish Kolaczki! Thank You for sharing it with all of us!
    Merry Christmas!
    Beth Dzurko
    Edinboro, PA

    1. Thanks so much Beth! Have a merry Christmas and a happy New Year yourself!


      – Joe

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