Sunday, January 29, 2006

Metric Conversion

Gee. Even posting a delicious recipe for Peanut Butter Oatmeal Wheat Germ Cookies gets me into trouble!

Michelle, the South African goddess who graciously reads this humble blog (and, by the way, if you don’t read HER blog regularly you should – along with other blogs from folks NOT in the U.S. – it’ll broaden your perspectives. Perspectives, unlike hips, NEED to be broadened) has asked me to convert 1 C. (cup) into metric.

Okay. I can do that.

She probably thinks that, like most Amuurricans, I don’t do metric. She also knows that I am of an age that when I went to school the metric system hadn’t been invented yet.

But I can be a very surprising person. I am not illiterate (despite what the agents I’ve been querying seem to think of my writing). I know a little about the metric system. It replaced the Dewey Decimal system in libraries, didn’t it?

Okay, a “cup” is a volume measure. It is defined as the volume of 8 ounces of water. You know: “two cups to a pint, two pints to a quart, and four quarts to a gallon.” Also, “a pint’s a pound, the world around.” (Even in Africa, Michelle!) And a pound is sixteen ounces; so one cup, being half a pound, is 8 ounces.

So what’s the metric equivalent to the volume of 8 ounces of water? Let’s see, there are 28.35 grams to the ounce, so 8 ounces = 226.796 grams. But one cup = 236.588 cubic centimeters, and I thought 1 gram of water = 1 cc?

Wait. There are 2.54 centimeters to the inch. I KNOW that one. But that doesn’t help, does it?

(Scratching head).

Hey, Michelle, wherever the recipe says 1 Cup, just toss in a double handful. That’s close enough. Oh, except for the chocolate chips. They’re the best part of the cookie, so toss in TWO double-handfuls of those for each Cup. It’ll work just fine.

See? THAT was easy.

Oh, Michelle also asks (seriously) what wheat germ is. (I didn’t realize that Cape Town was so backwards, but I’m sure there are lots of common items there that I don’t know about.)

Wheat grains are really seeds. Inside the wheat seed is a small kernel called the “germ.” Why? Because when seeds sprout they are said to “germinate.” That small kernel is the part that actually germinates. The rest of the seed is just there to provide food for the newly formed plant that germinated.

You didn’t know that? Well, part of my mission is to educate my readers, so there you are.

Wheat germ is found in the cereal section of our U.S. supermarkets. It has a nutty flavor. If you just can't find wheat germ, you could always substitute finely ground nuts.

What kind of nuts? I don’t know. Probably pecans, cashews or almonds.

Or whatever their metric equivalents are.


Candace said...

You guys are great! Carol making all the delicious, nutritious food, and you making sure that all systems are go. The (conspiracy) doesn't have a chance against that. Not one.

Jodi said...

I'm definitely going to try this recipe. And since I usually make a note of what cookbook or magazine I find them in, I'm going to call them Cookies from Carol. So hopefully she won't mind I'm not calling them by their righteous title.

Anonymous said...

LOL - thank you John, that was very educational. When you are on the ski slops eating Peanut Butter Oatmeal Wheat Germ Cookies, I will gather up courage to bake here in a sweltering Cape Town. I don't think we have Quaker Oats anymore as once upon a time, we were bad and the rest of the world did not like us so all the countries boycotted us. But we have our very own brand of oats which I will use and I will take photographs of all our ingredients. *grin*.

Have a superlicious week. I have just woken up this Monday morning and guess what? The wind is blowing very strong. Whoop-dee-do.