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Is It Bologna Or Baloney?

Cathy Kates
Cathy Kates

Call me simple (or cheap), but I’ve been a fan of baloney since I was kid, always Oscar Mayer. At age 7, I was left alone all summer while my mom was at work and a baloney sandwich was a staple in my world. I used it as hors d’oeuvre when I was about 10 and had my first Tupperware party and even used it as a fun breakfast food for my daughter when she was young. Let me explain.

When I was 10 my mother brought me to a Tupperware party and of course afterwards they asked if anyone wanted to sign up and have a party at their house. If you did and sold enough product at that party you could win a super cool clock/radio with digital numbers that flipped (that’s how long ago it was). I begged my mother to allow me to have a party and told her I would even take care of making the food, if she bought it. I ended up serving cheese and baloney cut into the shapes of stars, circles and squares using tiny Tupperware cookie cutters and placed on top of crackers. How’s that for being the queen of theme?  (Oh, and I did sell enough to get the radio which I used all through high school too.)

Then, when my daughter was about three, I started to make what I called Bird Nest Baloney. I made scrambled eggs and set them aside. Now, maybe you didn’t know this, but when you heat a piece of baloney in a skillet, the edges fold up forming a “birds nest”. I would put the scrambled eggs in the bird’s nest bowl, top it with cheese, microwave it to melt the cheese and serve. She thought it was cool until she got old enough to realize she was eating baloney and revolted.

With my maturity comes a new more sophisticated baloney sandwich using mayo and topping the baloney with hot bread and butter pickles. Simple and a little on the weird side, I know. As we were purchasing our package of baloney I started to wonder why it’s spelled Bolonga and we don’t say “BAH-LONE-AH’ and instead call it  baloney, BAH-LONE-EE. Anybody??? Either way, I think it’s a weird word, but a cheap lunch.

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