I was recently having dinner with some friends when a carrot salad that my Grandmother had served many times when I was much younger. I couldn't help to think of the memories I had when this was served, this particular dish was often served at large family gatherings. I had then looked back at my collection of recipes and thought what else had I been missing for the past several years. So often our family recipes that we grew up with are ones that seem to taste extra good and have wonderful and warm feelings associated with them.
Large family gatherings when I was growing up meant being simply stuffed when you left. No good hostess in my family would want you to leave without being full, completely full, full with barely enough room to breathe. It would be bad manners to have a guest leave with them being hungry. I carried this on into my life. My last cocktail party a couple of dishes that were made didn't even get served. They didn't get served because there was too much food. With that being said here are a few of my family favorites that I have recently made.
Fried Corn Meal Mush – I know, you are thinking that sounds gross. I am sure many of us saw this on the ‘Little Rascals'. Now my favorite part of this dish is the crispy outside that you get when you pan fry the corn meal mush. You can add left over meat, sauteed onions to this to add a little flavor.
Copper Penny Salad – This is a sweet and savory carrot salad. Some people think eating carrots brings you good luck, or even good eyesight. This is an inexpensive salad to make, you can make this ahead of time so when it comes to serving you aren't in a rush. This salad tastes better on the second day.
Spiced Apple Cake– The fall means fresh apples are coming into season. I can't think of anything more tasty than some freshly pressed apple cider. Growing up in the Midwest meant during the fall we had apples in many different forms, apple pie, apple cider, fried apples, and yes, apple cake. Here is my grandmother's recipe for her spiced apple cake.
Family recipes are extra special. They are the recipes we are familiar with, and the ones that we know. Sometimes tasting something like we used to have can trigger many happy memories. Here are a few of my family's recipes that help to trigger special memories for me.