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Text Illustrations
A little girl asked her mother one Sunday morning as she was preparing lunch, “Mommy, why do you cut off the ends of the ham before you cook it?” The girl’s mother turned and looked at her and said, “Oh, sweetie, I’m not really sure why, but I suppose you cut the ends off of the meat so that the meat can better absorb the juices and spices and make it more tender. Maybe you’d better ask Grandma since she was the one I learned it from. She always did it that way.” The little girl called her grandmother later that day on the phone and asked her the same question, “Grandma, why do you cut the ends off of the ham before you cook it?” The little girl’s grandmother responded, “Oh, sweetie, I’m not really sure. I think it is so that the juices will be absorbed better. Call your Nana. She is who I learned it from.” The little girl began to get a bit frustrated with the whole idea, but decided to call her great-grandmother anyway. “Nona, mom was preparing lunch the other day and she cut the ends off of the ham before she cooked it. I asked her why and she said that she did it because the juices would absorb better, making it more tender. She told me to ask Grandma to make sure since she learned it from her. Well, I called Grandma and she said the same thing about the juices and all, but that she learned it from you and I should ask you. Nana, why do you cut the ends off of the ham before you cook it?” There was a long pause in the conversation and then the little girl heard what sounded like muffled laughter coming from the other end of the line. “What’s so funny, Nona?” “Oh, sweetie, I cut the ends off of the ham before I cooked it because my pan was too small!”