Wednesday, January 10, 2007

"I love food" memories

This month's Carnival of Genealogy is supposed to be about food - family recipes, food memories, and the like. I have four separate experiences:

1) My mother was not a culinary wizard. Her parents were only children and fifth generation German-Americans, so there were no handed down recipes, big family meals with ethnic dishes or the like. Cooking for her was something she had to do every day - not what she wanted to do (she was an artist, a teacher, a reader) but she had a husband and three active boys in the 1950's and on. I remember meat, potatoes and vegetables for dinner. I remember pork chops, chipped beef, ground beef, fried chicken, meatballs, steak (cooked to shoe leather), etc. Mashed potatoes. Fresh vegetables. She went to the Safeway store across the street every day. The only special thing I remember (my dad loved it) was vermicelli - toast with egg whites over it, covered with grated egg yolk. We had fried egg sandwiches for lunch occasionally. On school days it was peanut butter or bologna sandwiches. Breakfast was sometimes scrambled or fried eggs with bacon, and pancakes on the weekend.

2) The big treat each week when I was a kid and a teenager was Saturday morning. My dad bowled on Friday night and would go to the bakery on his way home. Ummm. Doughnuts! cream puffs!! eclairs!!! They rarely lasted until Sunday.

3) My own cooking skills are pretty utilitarian - I can barbecue, fry meat, boil water and nuke almost anything. Oh, I can also open soup cans and Dinty Moore stew. Cooking on my own is pretty much desperation.

4) Now, my Angel Linda is a culinary wizard. Ahhh. I married a fantastic cook - and she loves to do it. It didn't take long for her to fatten me up after we married (and it's a battle to keep the weight to a steady level) because she fed me so well. It's still pretty much meat, vegetables and potatoes. Her special dish is baked stuffed zucchini shells with the zucchini inside stuff mixed with raw eggs and put back in the shells with a layer of cheese over the top of it. I'm so lucky!

I do love to eat - and it's almost dinner time, so bon appetit!

1 comment:

Jude said...

I hate most food. I figure that gives me an advantage in some ways. I think this is because I'm allergic to so many things that eating makes me feel sick. I took an ethnicity class in college where I learned that in my family, we most likely ate only a couple of ethnic foods, and that was iffy--sauerkraut and carrot/raisin salad. Genealogy explained to me why my ethnicity isn't reflected in the foods I eat. My earliest ancestors (aside from the still unproven Cherokees) arrived in North America in the 1600s. I have one more recent immigrant ancestor who came during the California Gold Rush and one ggg-grandmother who came over during the Potato Famine, but other than those two, the others had generations in which to lose all traces of ethnic eating.