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Mr. Wiggles
Dec 1, 2003

I would never shop at Costco. The paper towels won't fit into my sports car!

About 20 years ago, my father's mother passed away. My Grandma was a wonderful woman, a nurse and a teacher, who raised up ten children (nine of them boys!) in a very small town outside of Holbrook in Northern Arizona, moving there from Southern Illinois when the older children were still quite young. A woman of remarkable verve and wit, she was amazingly strong, capable, thrifty, funny, faithful, and hardworking. I got to know her pretty well when I was a child, and many of my earliest food memories came from her table and her kitchen counters. She was a fount of knowledge about all things edible and knew all the secrets of cooking, which I suppose was necessary since she was cooking not only for her own gigantic family but for the army of friends and hangers on who were always swarming about. Late in life, she compiled what was to be her magnum opus, a proper cookery book. She typed up the entire thing, indexed it, had sections for high-altitude conversions and expected yields from various sizes of bags and amounts of raw foods, etc. Unfortunately, it was never published, and it has existed only as a single copy - her original hand typed copy - in a gigantic three ring binder that my dad has kept since she went to see the Lord. My dad, all of his brothers and sister, and then myself and all of my generation have been cooking the recipes out of this book our whole lives but Grandma always deserved to have her book published, at least for the family. So I've taken on the task, with the family's blessing, of digitizing the book and printing at least some copies for the family. Maybe I'll send it out to the wider world, but that's a secondary concern.

In this thread, I hope to introduce you all to some of the really great stuff that is my family's cooking. Admittedly, some of it is 1950s.txt, but a lot of it reaches back to the Depression and further to my family's Scottish and German roots (especially German on Grandma's side, as she was a very proud Illinois Kruze, and has a zillion confection recipes to prove it), and there's also a lot of uniquely Southwestern food as well. Grandma made the best Prickly Pear Jelly ever, for instance. I'll be cooking the recipes from time to time, as I remember to have the camera in the kitchen, and also simply posting some recipes. Any requests, let me know, and I'll post away.

Anyway, to start with, I've excerpted the introduction that Grandma wrote for the book.

quote:

Introduction

A long time ago when I was alone with eight small children, Christmas was coming and I, along with a great many other people had very little money. I called the children together and told them that we had enough for one small present each or we could have a party for their friends. The children chose to have the party and it was such fun. Since that time this idea has grown, until now our Christmas celebration is a huge Holiday Open House, held sometime between Christmas and New year's Eve. To this party we invite all of our friends, the children's teachers and their families, the staff, all of them at the small hospital where I work part-time, our neighbors, and the faculty and classified staff at the Community College where I teach. I also invite my students, both past and present. Everyone is asked to bring their families as Christmas is for families.

The menu is planned and approved by July by all of the family at home, and we start accumulating supplies then. We start baking in October with the fruit cake: then we start making and freezing cookie dough. As November approaches we stuff and freeze mushrooms, and do a lot of the things that can be done ahead. We also send off a huge order to Swiss Colony for a variety of cheeses and those fancy little petit fours that are so delicious but are so much trouble to make.

By December 23, everything is ready except the last minute things like baking the turkey, making the casseroles, and making the canapes and slicing the cheeses. These things are done at the last minute. This whole thing is a family project and could not be done without a lot of help. The children do a lot of the cooking because I work full time and also part time. Yes, it is a bit expensive and time-consuming, but we feel that the way to celebrate Christmas is by sharing with others.

This cookbook came out of the requests from the children for all of the recipes we have used over the years, and from the many requests we have had from guests for this recipe or that. I am including the menu from Christmas 1981 in this introduction as an example. All of these recipes are in this book, plus others we have used in the past. I hope you will enjoy this book as much as we have enjoyed writing it. It is full of memories, and my family, and my beloved children.

On Christmas Eve 1981, all ten of my children were home for the first time in a lot of years. Of course I still had four at home, but the others were scattered. My one son who is married brought his lovely wife, whom I had not met yet, and their new baby, my first grandson, home as well, and it was a glorious celebration. We had a family portrait taken, and a result of the get-together was that I should finally start compiling this book, which I had been preparing for so long. On New Year's Day 1982 I began typing up this book.

Menu - Open House 1981

Turkey and dressing, sliced ham, Holiday Sweets, Eleanor's Christmas Salad, Holiday Sunshine Salad, Escalloped oysters, Cranberry sauce, jellied and whole, Hawaiian drumsticks, Stuffed mushrooms, Tempura shrimp, Vegetable relish plate, Carrie's clam dip, Onion dip, Chips, Chili con Queso dip and tortillas, Cheese tray, Sausage tray, Sherri's Cheese ball, Crackers, Rumaki, Cheese puffs, Pickles and olives, Pickled herring, Hot chilis, Pickled beets, Devilled eggs, Mother's potato salad, Fruit cake, Fruit cookies, Caramel cookies, Molasses cookies, Sugar cookies, Great cooky, Monster cookies, Magic cooky bars, Krispies treats, Almond Cherry balls, Date bars, Kipfel cookies, Springerle cookies, Chex snax, Petit fours, Stuffed dates, Chocolate icebox cookies, Valley of the Sun cookies, Lemon-nut icebox cookies, Fudge, Peanut brittle, Divinity, White chocolate clusters, Mixed nuts, Fruit punch, Non-alcoholic eggnog, Coffee

We requested the guests to bring their own liquor, but we did provide set-ups for them.

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blixa
Jan 9, 2006

Kein bestandteil sein

This is A Great Thing and I can't wait to see recipes and more stuff!

Republicans
Oct 14, 2003

- More money for us

- Fuck you


Grandma recipes are awesome. Did you know you could freeze donuts? These fuckers will last for months in a freezer and still taste great with a glass of milk for dunking.

A Bag of Milk
Jul 3, 2007

I don't see any American dream; I see an American nightmare.


I don't have much to add except I am on the edge of my seat for more of this thread.

Crusty Nutsack
Apr 21, 2005



This is already my new favorite thread. That intro was awesome and I love that list of food, so many familiar things and "retro" things and new things. Can't wait for recipes.

I'm getting my grandma's recipes when my grandpa passes (my grandma already passed a couple years ago). It was the one thing I told my dad that I Must have of hers. She didn't put anything in a book or organize them, though. That side of the family is huge though and people have requested recipes already from the collection. Maybe I should organize them all and make a book too.

paraquat
Nov 25, 2006

Burp


bookmarked


I have one recipe of my grandmother, and it's awesome/easy/weird, the whole family still makes it
(she's still alive at 96, but she probably wouldn't know how to make food anymore)

the other grandmother is dead, but didn't like the whole cooking thing to begin with, so no recipes there.

Mr. Wiggles
Dec 1, 2003

I would never shop at Costco. The paper towels won't fit into my sports car!

First recipe. Below is a truly great cookie recipe. As my grandmother notes, it's not her original (well, the volume is), but it's listed in the above Open House menu and it really captures the spirit of the quantities she often cooked in. These cookies are terribly good, and I hope that some of you make them.

Republicans
Oct 14, 2003

- More money for us

- Fuck you


Mr. Wiggles posted:

First recipe. Below is a truly great cookie recipe. As my grandmother notes, it's not her original (well, the volume is), but it's listed in the above Open House menu and it really captures the spirit of the quantities she often cooked in. These cookies are terribly good, and I hope that some of you make them.



Gonna cut that by about 1/6 and try it tomorrow if I can get off work at a decent time. It looks a lot like a no-bake cookie recipe only without milk and with eggs and baking powder so I guess they come out nice and chewy?

Mr. Wiggles
Dec 1, 2003

I would never shop at Costco. The paper towels won't fit into my sports car!

Chewy crispy, if that makes sense. Basically peanut butter oatmeal cookies with stuff in them.

And come on you should totally make a batch of 300.

Frykte
Jan 20, 2009


Thanks

Liquid Communism
Mar 9, 2004

Congratulations on not getting fit in 2011!

And for shitting up the Shadowrun 5E thread in 2014!


No lie, gonna make those eventually.

Roommates love it when I quit being a bitterly depressed rear end in a top hat and instead get back to being a drunken pastry cook.

Need to run to the restaurant supply store, though. These cookie sheets suck rear end, I need some half sheet pans.

Edit : Nevermind, car died on the way to the farmer's market this morning. No baking for me.

Liquid Communism fucked around with this message at Aug 16, 2014 around 13:46

Republicans
Oct 14, 2003

- More money for us

- Fuck you




Fresh out of the oven they're slightly crispy and pleasantly chewy. I quartered the recipe, used a little extra peanut butter (both to finish the jar and because I love peanut butter) and simply used a full bag of chocolate chips, effectively doubling the chocolate:dough ratio of the recipe. Maybe it's my fault for being too greedy with the chips but they didn't fold in very well due to the greasy texture of the dough. Next time I'm using chunky peanut butter and I'll drizzle the finished cookies with melted chocolate.

Mr. Wiggles
Dec 1, 2003

I would never shop at Costco. The paper towels won't fit into my sports car!

They look really good though! And since they have oatmeal they're perfectly acceptable for breakfast!

Third Murderer
Jan 18, 2003

Happy birthday!


Those sound amazing, I'll have to try them sometime. I assume not, since it's not mentioned there, but do you happen to know why they're called monster cookies? Thanks for this thread either way - I love things like this. My family is very small so I have to enjoy these kinds of traditions vicariously.

Liquid Communism
Mar 9, 2004

Congratulations on not getting fit in 2011!

And for shitting up the Shadowrun 5E thread in 2014!


Making these now, my place smells awesome.

Doh004
Apr 22, 2007

Mmmmm Donuts...

Grandma cookie recipe cards are the best! Every Christmas we get together and have 3 straight days of baking cookies. Although we've found some of the recipes need tweaking here and there (ingredients seem to be different these days) they're still loving incredible.

This is a good thread.

Daeren
Aug 17, 2009

YER MUSTACHE IS CROOKED


My grandmas are unfortunately not that great for most cooking inspiration. One's a booze-soaked 90 year old pile of passive aggression propelled forward in life solely through fear of (and spite for) the reaper, and she had my mother do most of the chores in the house when she was young. Even if she had cooking advice to impart, she just sucks the life out of the room like a vampire, so I doubt I'd seek it out much.

My other grandma, fortunately, is - the sweetest old woman in the entire world, loves everybody, spoils her grandkids and great-grandkids rotten, and every once in a long while, when we've nearly forgotten the last time, she makes a dirty joke that gives everyone in the room heart attacks from shock. Sadly, she grew up on a farm in the Great Depression, and her parents taught her that the only way you know meat is safe is when it is bone dry, has a cottony texture, and resembles either charcoal or boot leather. Spices are not to be trusted, either.

Desserts though? Holy poo poo, all the grandma talent she should have in meals went to compound the grandma talent at dessert. Her pies have been known to spark arguments in the extended family over who gets the last piece, and her snack mix was a secret recipe for nearly 20 years before we wheedled her into letting us help make it. Turned out to be almost disappointingly simple - turned out to be a tweaked version of an old recipe on the back of a Chex box a few decades ago. Still delicious, if loaded with probably entirely too much sodium and butter.

EVG
Dec 17, 2005

If I Saw It, Here's How It Happened.


More please! I am very curious about "THE GREAT COOKIE"

Mr. Wiggles
Dec 1, 2003

I would never shop at Costco. The paper towels won't fit into my sports car!

Heh, I'm getting there. Hopefully this weekend I'll get a thing cooked and posted.

bartolimu
Nov 25, 2002

All the world is blue and there's nothing I can do...

I made a 1/6 batch of Monster Cookies and they're pretty great. The balance of chocolate and peanut butter is good, the texture is interesting, and I'm already thinking about playing around with the recipe a bit. (Grated coconut? Cinnamon and raisins? The variations are endless.)

Vegetable Melange
Oct 23, 2008

tHROW SOME D"s ON THAT BIZNATCH


Yessssss. Totally gonna pass the monster recipe on to my pastry friends and keep the dream alive.

The Midniter
Jul 9, 2001



I am so glad you decided to go ahead with this.


I love how on the monster cookies recipe your grandma wrote down "cooky". Charming as all hell.

Mr. Wiggles
Dec 1, 2003

I would never shop at Costco. The paper towels won't fit into my sports car!

This weekend we made something else out of the cookbook, since we had all the ingredients on hand (from the garden).



It's not haute or anything, but it is a tasty homey sort of thing. For the peppers I used some of the jalapenos that I'm overloaded with right now, and for some reason I was out of tomato sauce so I used some of the fresh tomatoes that I have too many of (not as a paste, but just chopped up and roasted in the pan.) I just used some cheap malbec as the liquid in the pan, and it does the job beautifully. Trying to get rid of a garden full of green beans and potatoes, too, so I took my grandma's suggestions for sides. The beef ends up well done in this recipe, but very tender and unctuous.


The plating leaves something to be desired, I know, but I was very interested in serving dinner to my family at the moment. This is a good recipe for serving to families.

kinmik
Jul 17, 2011

Dog, what are you doing? Get away from there.
You don't even have thumbs.


Mr. Wiggles posted:

"The children loved it, except the time I...used venetian blind cord instead."
Holy poo poo, I love your Grandmother.

Aery
Nov 15, 2005

Where is my motherfucking HAT

Please please almond cherry balls, they are one of my husbands favorites!

Mr. Wiggles
Dec 1, 2003

I would never shop at Costco. The paper towels won't fit into my sports car!

Aery posted:

Please please almond cherry balls, they are one of my husbands favorites!

I'm very sorry, but she had no such recipe in her book. The closest things are "caraway cherry rounds" (which are amazing) and "almond fruit slices" (which are also amazing).

bartolimu
Nov 25, 2002

All the world is blue and there's nothing I can do...

I'd vote for caraway cherry rounds, mostly because I use caraway for baking and Central European dishes and not much else. Seeing it used in a fruity context could be interesting.

BastardAus
Jun 3, 2003
Chunder from Down Under

Drooling for Easy Oniony Steak and Potatoes now!

Bob Morales
Aug 18, 2006

HYPER-THREADING


Wish I could go back to when my grandma was alive. We just have a box with her recipes in it, maybe I should scan them all in.

Mr. Wiggles
Dec 1, 2003

I would never shop at Costco. The paper towels won't fit into my sports car!

bartolimu posted:

I'd vote for caraway cherry rounds, mostly because I use caraway for baking and Central European dishes and not much else. Seeing it used in a fruity context could be interesting.



These are super tasty. A modified old school German thing from her side of the family, as I understand it.

EVG
Dec 17, 2005

If I Saw It, Here's How It Happened.


What does it mean by "wrap and seal"? Do you enclose the cherry into the center of the dough like a surprise in the middle? Or is it pressed on top and baked?

Mr. Wiggles
Dec 1, 2003

I would never shop at Costco. The paper towels won't fit into my sports car!

Like, wrap the corners up to the center over the cherry, like little purses, I believe.

El Marrow
Jan 21, 2009

for(var i=0; i<144; i++){
console.log("Clever Title Text");
}

What a thread. I'm definitely looking forward to more.

THE MACHO MAN
Nov 15, 2007

...Carey...

draw me like one of your French Canadian girls


This is a cool thread. I wish my family had a book of recipes to pass down. The one thing I really wanna get from my grandmother is her sunday sauce. Unfortunately, she's convinced that she'll drop dead if she shares.

aswert1223
Dec 6, 2004

The Ultimate Dripping Machine


I call bullshit

Good recipes, but that type of two column typing is difficult

That Works
Jul 21, 2006

You don't have to be an angel to be a Saint


aswert1223 posted:

I call bullshit

Good recipes, but that type of two column typing is difficult

Maybe difficult for you.

Beardless
Aug 12, 2011

I am Centurion Titus Polonius. And the only trouble I've had is that nobody seem to realize that I'm their superior officer.

I love that the monster cookie recipe makes allowances for the kids eating the raw dough. She knew what was up.

Wroughtirony
May 14, 2007



aswert1223 posted:

I call bullshit

Good recipes, but that type of two column typing is difficult


Hahahahahahaha awwwww...

Oracle
Oct 9, 2004

Alright, who set my homepage to hornycripples.com?


People actually took typing courses as part of high school back in the day, and many many women worked as typists. Its not that hard if you've been doing it for years.

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Bob Morales
Aug 18, 2006

HYPER-THREADING


Oracle posted:

People actually took typing courses as part of high school back in the day, and many many women worked as typists. Its not that hard if you've been doing it for years.

Plot twist: Daisy wheel printer and Wordstar

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