It's chilly outside -- freezing, even -- and all I can think about are refrigerator dishes. I've been scouring ebay for deals and chucking my collection of Rubbermaids. I've become obsessed. I drift off into a 1950s fantasy where I wear a frilly apron every day and am married to Dr. Alex Stone.
I'm not actually married to Dr. Alex Stone, but my real husband doesn't expect me to do all the housework, so there's that.
My husband totally gets me. For Christmas, he presented me with a delightfully hodge-podge collection of Pyrex and Fire King refrigerator dishes.
Sure, Tupperware is far and away more convenient (if not environmentally friendly). These glass dishes are both cumbersome and fragile. What a combination! In fact, one of the dishes came pre-chipped. I love that, though. Part of the appeal of antiques for me is that they have been used. Day after day, these dishes were filled with the remaining portions of family dinner, and enjoyed again the following day. The dishes represent the cycle of daily living, the rituals of cooking and savoring food together as a family. Such a simple object like the container for leftover dinner bears an intricate, beautiful design.
Not yet retired in 2010, after fifty some odd years of continual service to cooks, these refrigerator dishes make yet another kitchen both beautiful and functional. I used to toss my Tupperware in their designated pile in the pantry. Now I relish taking a few extra moments to arrange the refrigerator dishes -- carefully, now! --- on their shelf.