Food is the center for our family gatherings. When preparing food for these gatherings, recipes are created by adding, modifying and testing. These recipes become favorites and staples over our family meals with time. Some of these recipes are held in families over generations.
These vintage recipes also tie us to our past family members, eras and even our memories of childhood. Who knew our emotions and feelings are also all stirred up into these favorite recipes we ask for?
Pies are a favorite in our family. It is all about the pie crust. The recipe has been handed down over the last three generations. A family cookbook has been saved in our family and since I have the most interest in cooking and baking, it will later make its way to me. It will be an honor to have it in my pantry.
With your family, share and create a cookbook for everyone. These favorites are important to pass on, as we take away something different and special with each of them.
“As our food choices have expanded (we have access to foods our grandparents wouldn’t have been able to get a hold of), our interest in recreating those family recipes has waned. We’ve expanded our culinary prowess, and while our grandparents had to make do with what they had, what they could put up, and what would get them through potentially long choice-less winters at the local grocery stores, we don’t. We can get pretty much whatever, whenever. I think that just a couple of generations back, they cooked primarily from scratch. I know lots of people who don’t know how to make their own foods–as they have grown up almost entirely on store-bought pre-packaged foods. So, in that respect, having grandma’s recipes is like having her wisdom. In fact, my grandmother’s jello salad is one of my all time favorite recipes. When I make it, I think of her…every time. And yes, it’s not going to turn the heads of any chefs, but it always gets gobbled up, and it’s a part of my history.”
“So, while I see the appeal to expanding on grandma’s staple recipes, leaving them behind entirely seems sad to me. I hope to pass them on–like it will keep her alive forever, in a way.” –
Photography: Teresa Blackburn