Sister Schubert Gets Me

No, I don't have time, but I so appreciate your asking…

A couple of times this year I’ve gotten burned by not completely reading the  packaging on a prepared frozen entree. The front of the box might scream, “Ready in ten minutes!” but the fine print on the back of the box under directions lists a critical step:  ”Thaw in refrigerator overnight.”

Six p.m. is not the time to discover these instructions for thawing. Obviously this is a dinner killer. The Thaw Overnight instruction has ruined my evening more than once, and incited me to shake a box of beef and scream, “You are dead to me!”.

Pulling out a tin of trusty Sister Schubert rolls over the holidays, I was reminded of why I love this Alabama-made dinnertime staple. Not only are the rolls excellent, but the instructions reflect, to my mind, an understanding of my life. They begin, ”IF YOU HAVE TIME TO THAW…” and the process goes on  from there. Then there are the merciful, heat-straight-from-frozen instructions.

There’s something in the qualifier, “If you have time” that offers a non judgmental, even sympathetic tone. “Here, this is how it should be done under ideal circumstances, but if not, no worries. You will not have to set these rolls in motion 24 hours before you want to eat them. In fact, you will be enjoying these tonight! In less than half an hour! You have hope of escaping the kitchen and sitting down sometime before bed!” 

Sister, thank you for understanding that some days I have time and some days I don’t. Thank you for selling rolls that allow me to skip the part where I proof yeast and knead dough and get flour dust all over the counter and cut the dough and roll it and spend two hours letting the stuff rise before dabbing it with little pats of butter. I am sooo happy to just pop these in the oven and begin devouring them 30 minutes later.

One day maybe I’ll maybe be as good a breadmaker as you. For now, it’s nice to have you as a sister* who understands.  

*Actually, the real Sister Schubert, Patricia Barnes, sold the company and has gone on to establish the Barnes Charitable Foundation. She created jobs in Alabama and insisted on quality ingredients and the signature round tin for her product. Whenever I pass through Luverne on the way to the beach, I give a saaa-lute to the good folks at the Sister Schubert’s plant who are making these rolls.