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October 18, 2012 / dcwisdom

The Gift of Recipes

There aren’t many greater things in life than to be gifted with a priceless treasure box of recipes from a fabulous cook!

Grandmother’s Kahlua

The cook was my grandmother who passed last December at 110-years-old.  And a fabulous cook she was!  When I was maybe seven or eight back when beehives were popular, I remember one visit when she cooked chop suey.  I LOVED my grandmother’s chop suey!  And that was before Asian dishes raged.  Whenever she knew I was coming for a visit, her go-to dishes were her awesome chop suey and egg custard pie.  No question; hands down.  My favorites.

Grandmother’s kitchen was the typical, tiny kitchen of the 1940’s era, probably 10′ x 14′, no joke!  My great-grandfather built the house in the 1880’s or 1890’s, square nails, dog run style, 14′ ceilings, transoms above the 8′ interior doors, wavy-glassed windows…  We all loved that house.  I don’t know when the kitchen was built into the house, but apparently a man built it – skinny and dark.  Back then, kitchens weren’t constructed as works of art; they only functioned for one person – the cook.  Many weekends and holidays as I remember, as many as six or seven women, and maybe a couple of kids at the table, filled that tiny room.  We packed in like sardines, but we loved it.  Grandmother and we put out some mean vittles from these recipes.  Ah, the memories…

Dissecting “The Famous Recipe Box”

Today, Brin and I went through Grandmother’s entire recipe box.  Yep.  Ohmygosh — the treasures we found!  I would dare to guess that some of those recipes are a century old – steamed prune cake,  lemon curd, vinegar pie…

So this is Brin’s and my plan.  There’s this website, Spoonflower, that turns any recipe(s) into tea towels, and the image can be in the original handwriting.  It’s magic!  Check it out.  We set aside the “really special recipes” to have them printed onto tea towels for Christmas gifts.  (So if any of my family reads this, pretend you didn’t.  And mum’s the word.  But just wait – you’ll love it!)

My quest for the holidays is to use several of these old recipes, like the egg custard, fruitcake, divinity, and corn pudding recipes, for our big family gathering at Thanksgiving.  It might turn into a Julie and Julia thing – well, maybe a Mary/Debra thing.  Oh, and by the way, my grandmother  watched Julia on TV and loved her!

Peace and love.  Pray for the peace of Jerusalem.  God bless Israel.  God help America.



  1. debby9972 / Oct 18 2012 2:05 PM

    What a great idea! I grew up with chop suey which was amazing. I even made it many, many years ago. I myself need to get some family recipes into some binders to pass down in the family.

    • dcwisdom / Oct 18 2012 4:14 PM

      Hey, Debby…
      In fact, today I bought chop suey stuff. Made myself hungry for it. 🙂
      Have a beautiful California day!

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