Now We’re Cooking!

It’s prehistoric remains week here at Trail Baboon. Yesterday we considered the ramifications of some ancient teeth uncovered near Tel Aviv that may upend our understanding of who was where, when.

Today comes news that our ancient, now extinct near cousins, the Neanderthals, were not the brutish, meat-only diners that many had assumed, but in fact, ate plants, and some of those plants were cooked. This is yet another step in countering the popular cultural image of the Neanderthals as dopey cavemen who were too backward and unimaginative to survive. The new vision of Neanderthals sometimes eating vegetables rather than always ripping apart some unfortunate ungulate (Elk again, mom? Really?) and devouring it raw gives us a more nuanced understanding of who they were.

Sophisticated eaters and engaging dinner companions whose laughing eyes were unfortunately shaded by their prominent foreheads. I’m sure in the years to come we’ll learn more about Neanderthal dining habits, including some of their favorite recipes:

Alley Oop Salad
Cave Dweller Cole Slaw
Bedrock Vegetarian Chili
Clubbed Squash

And my new favorite – Neander Valley Tabouli

2 cups seed of rough grass from mouth of cave
2 cups very hot water from fire keepers
1 bundle green stuff from underside of log, chopped
2 small crunchy ground melons, chopped
1 bunch ferns, (8) sliced
1/2 cup fresh chopped rotten bark flower (NOT the red one)
2 cups fresh chopped children of vine that grows up side of rock
1 clove smelly root, minced (optional)

Dressing: 1/2 cup juice of tiny yellow sun,
3/4 cup slippery juice from tree berries,
1 tablespoon tickle nose powder (black),
2 teaspoons seawater (with water removed).

Soak the grass seed from mouth of cave in hot water until mixture cools. Squeeze like helpless enemy caught in battle.
Use sharp edged rock to attack ground melons, ferns, rotten bark flower, vine children, smelly root and green stuff. Leave no survivors. Gather remains into bowl with grass seed.
Mix sun juice, slippery juice, nose powder and no water seawater. Pour over mixture.

Defend with unchecked ferocity from all interlopers and predators.

What’s the oldest recipe in your day-to-day repetoire?

147 thoughts on “Now We’re Cooking!”

  1. Somehow I thought we’d be getting an early start today!

    The oldest recipe in my book (I have a binder… who is surprised by this?) is for vegetarian lasagne. I don’t remember where I got it, but keep in mind that 40 years ago, there weren’t lots of vegetarian recipes around. I only made this at my house once as a teenager; my mom was hoping that lots of passive/aggressive behavior would dissuade me from my “vegetarian kick” and did not encourage any experimentation on my part. I did make it alot once I got out on my own a few years later. The other really old recipe in my binder is for Refrigerator Oatmeal Bread, which would raise in the fridge so could be left a little longer before baking if needed.

    Can’t wait to see what everyone else comes up with!

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  2. Good morning all you sleepy baboons who stayed up to see the game last night! I still make several recipes my mother had in rotation. I’ve got a tuna salad (with mayonnaise), tuna hotdish (with cream of mushroom soup and crushed potato chips on top), a basic chili, a meatloaf and a kidney bean salad. The one I enjoy most, though, is what she called “salmon patties.” I think a modern cook might call them “salmon croquettes.”

    Does everyone know that one? You mix salmon with an egg or two and some pulverized cracker crumbs and then form patties. You sizzle those in a skillet with a little bit of very hot cooking oil, drain and serve.

    Last night I got a strange recipe from a friend who is a former Iowan, an authentic recipe for “Maid Rite” loose meat burgers! You could guess much of the recipe, but there is a strange secret ingredient. I’ll pop back in and share this later in the day.

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    1. Have been thinking about making salmon “patties” for weeks…have my canned salmon handy for the right night. Excellent choice, Steve.

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    2. Salmon patties was one of the seven dishes that was served up when my mother was a child. My grandfather had some serious OCD/control issues and so they had only 7 main meals… served on the same night each week. Salmon patties were Tuesday night, I believe. As a result of this, except for some occasional hamburgers (Saturday nights), my mother never cooked ANY of those meals again that I know of!

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      1. Okay, here it comes!!! Maid Rite burgers coming right up. You brown 1 lb of hamburger with 1 chopped onion, pouring off the grease as you cook it. Mash it all up to keep the chunks of hamburger small. Now you add salt and pepper to taste, a tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce and . . . 12 ounces of Coca Cola! Heat to warm all that up and serve on buns.

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  3. And you do this all first thing in the morning-wow. Barrista, I will have some of what Mr. Connelly is drinking!

    I uphold the noble tradition of the hunter-gatherer by cruising down to the pantry shelves, scanning the fridge and deep-freeze and asking myself the question, well, what do we have and what can we make out of it? We have yet to starve on that method. Right now we have a nice stash of leftovers from the Christmas Eve buffet, so we are high on the proverbial hog. For the rest of the winter, it is looking like a lot of squash and a real shortage of tomatoes (not a jar on the shelf).

    Oldest recipes are probably from Grandma’s old church cookbook that was printed the year I was born (ancient, just ask my son). The banana bread in it has no peer, we will make no other.

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    1. I should challenge you to a banana break bakeoff! I have a recipe that is really old (I think Moses got it from a burning bush) and time-tested. We could make the bread and then have a neutral third party set up a blind taste test!

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  4. Good morning to all,

    I think I would say that mashed potatoes would win the prize for the oldest main stay in our diet. We don’t have them every day as was more or less the case when I was a youngster and some times not every week. My mother boiled the chunks of potatoes to be mashed. I steam them. A hand masher is used to combine the cooked potatoes with a little milk, butter, and salt and pepper. It doesn’t take much time to make them and even less time now that I have stopped peeling the potatoes. Potatoes come from S. America so I don’t think the Neanderthals ate them.

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  5. I remember scrambling eggs in first grade. Straight from Neanderthal Summer Cookbook. Find nest with eggs of flying bird. Shake tree until egg falls on hot rock. Stir with stick eat when hard.

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      1. Dale and Jim Ed used to play a version by Rosalee…(last name is escaping me…Dale?) that I loved. I often think about the tunes they used to play by her, but haven’t heard for years…the other one she sang so beautifully was “where are you going…” (was that it?)

        speaking of dredging up ancient things…from my mind.

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      2. Cynthia, you are probably thinking of Rosalie Sorrels. I believe she recorded “Turn Around”, which is a Malvina Reynolds song.
        “The Rock and The Egg” is a recording by Faith Petric. The only copy I know of is on an LP in the MPR library. (The writing credit for that one, according to the jacket, goes to ‘Biggs Tinker’. Try saying it fast.)

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      3. Found one of the shows with the Egg/Rock song…. December 6, 2004. Right after the Prairie Sun. Kind of fun to hear Dale and Jim Ed, although listening to the news/sports from 7 years ago is a little warping.

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      4. Sherrilee, how did you find that so fast? I’ve contemplated listening to old shows, and I think I know how to do that, but is there a search place where you plug in the song title?

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      5. Wish it were magic… I just googled it and the 3rd item up mentioned it. So I went to mpr.org to the MS archives and looked it up. And the best part was that morning, Dale did an on-air interview with Peter Mayre, which was fabulous.

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  6. Rise and Shine Baboons!

    I was one of the Great Apes watching the game last night in shock. That new quarterback is terrific. Kind of a shock to see the QB take off then make a touchdown without limping, wincing or making certain the TV camera is on him before passing!

    I have many of the same old stand by recipes as Steve–must be the Iowa cookbook. I already posted the recipe for Wild Plum Pudding that we tracked back to 1835 or so. Incidentally, my mother is visiting this week. Today we will spend making her favorite Chex Mix for our family gathering this weekend. I will post that recipe with its own mystery ingredient later as we dig it out (it is with her stuff and she is still asleep). Then we will make another old favorite, Peanut Blossom cookies which I believe were discussed on this blog last week. Brach’s stars vs. Hershey kisses.

    My old faves are my aunt’s fried chicken, Early Bird Coffee Cake, and Basic Sweet Rolls–the Miracle Method. None of these are dishes I make often anymore, because of the weight gain issues they induce. But they are delicious. Then there is Grandma’s Flat Bread and Mrs. Brady’s Waldorf Astoria Cake that I just made for Christmas (it is bright red). Mrs. Brady always made it for my friend Carol’s birthday every year. We thought it was so glamorous, especially with the Crisco frosting. I now make it with Cream Cheese Frosting and my booze-berry filling between layers. I just made it last Friday for our Saturday Christmas gathering.

    Thirty-five years ago, shortly after she got married, my friend Ruth decided to make the red Waldorf-Astoria Cake with green food coloring for St. Patrick’s Day. It turned everybody’s mouths green and she reported startling results the next day in the bathroom! Ruth recommends not doing that.

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      1. There is also a Weight Watchers next to the Pancake House in Edina. Suppose that’s a commentary on our society? Nothing we worry about so much as our weight – but nothing we like better than chowing down!

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      1. Not supposed to sound good. First “cooking” I ever did. My sister and I took old jars from our mother that had chips on the rim so they would not seal. We pretended to can empty pea pods with creek water. We closed them up with lids and rusted rings our mother gave us. Then we stored in the woodshed to pretend they were in the cellar, up on the top of the wood near the roof. 3 weeks later they exploded; the smell is one on the family legends.

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  7. there are two we use more than others, but like MIG, i tend to just punt with whatever is in the fridge or pantry (we live too far from anywhere to just run to the store or order in). potatoes w/ cole slaw on top (and maybe, if we’re lucky, some goat cheese between the tater and the slaw)
    and a angel hair pasta dressed with an uncooked sauce of roasted red peppers, olive oil, anchovies, lots of garlic, and capers (with pine nuts and parsley if available)

    my Mom would make creamed peas on toast a lot for supper but i’ve never tried that on Steve. 🙂

    a gracious good morning to You All

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      1. ha, ha! thanks, CiM, and i agree about salmon patties – i made salmon loaf (only used leftover white and wild rice instead of crax) the other night. loaf is for lazy people who don’t want to stand and fry the patties 🙂 i know, i know – the crispy edges…..

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    1. I wonder if the creamed peas on toast would be the same sort of thing my Mom made; peas and tuna on toast… Mom said it was sort of a white sauce the peas were in… can white sauce be considered creamy?

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      1. My mom made creamed peas with Bac-Os, not tuna (might have been a substitution made since my brother and I were not tuna fans as kids). Still oddly comforting.

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      2. I have a recipe I clipped from an old Ann Landers column for salmon patties topped with creamed peas. Another one I saved is for lemon meringue pie – given to her by a cab driver.

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  8. My mother made creamed tuna on toast…I’ve been indulging my need for comfort food by making it often but on Thomas English Muffins.

    Probably the oldest recipe I have is scalloped corn my grandmother used to make with fresh Guernsey cream, eggs, crackers and creamed corn that I can think of. My sister and I still insist on it for holiday dinners. (Reminds me I promised to find it and send it to my aunt…time to dig it out)

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    1. Yes, I have a similar scalloped corn recipe that would probably be even better with that cream instead of milk. Mine is probably from the Bergen Lutheran Church Cookbook out of Roland, Ia. compiled in the early sixties… says to finely crush “1 tube of saltines, less two”. Who figured out the less two ??

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      1. Hey Barbara: My mother told me today that the Miracle Method Roll recipe came from that same Bergen Cookbook. We sat and looked through it today. Were they the Swedes or Norwegians. Norske I think.

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  9. Just remembered the “Bukken” my other grandmother made — deep fried sweet bread dough sprinkled with sugar. Tried it a few years ago at a family reunion…alas the lard was a “bit” old, though I don’t remember it affected the taste of the Bukken, but certainly tainted the gorgeous golden apple pie crust. even the chickens wouldn’t eat it.

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    1. Rosalie Sorrels is one of my favorites. I particularly like her songs and stories about raising children. She told both sides of child rearing with a lot of feeling, the difficulties and the joys.

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      1. My favorite was her Hostile Baby Rocking Song which I think would be appreciated by any one who has spent many hours holding fussy babies that will not let you lay them down.

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  10. I have a recipe card my grandmother wrote out for me for meringue cookies. The final instructions are: Put cookie sheet in oven/Turn off oven/Go to bed.

    Mine never turn out quite like Grandma’s.

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    1. had my son take charge of the variation on meringue cookies this year-raspberry with mini-chocolate chips in them, fondly known as Pink Pigs.

      I was a little concerned at how they would look based on his scooping technique, but they turned out great and not one was left.

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    2. I have the same problem with my grandmother’s meringue cookies – she called them “forgotten cookies” b/c of the “go to bed” part of her recipe…can’t get ’em to be the same shape at all. Hers were green and a little minty…

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    3. i have a recipe from my paternal Grandma that is titled “this is how i cook them” – it’s for groundcherry jam. it mostly says “cook until done” – love those Grandma recipes. my other Grandma directed me to cut out the rolled cookie dough with a spam can. so first i have to buy Spam, and then eat it? (help, Ben!) in my opinion, being a Grandma (or Grandpa), requires one to refine weirdness (in life and cooking) so that the grandkids will remember those quirky little things.

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      1. That reminds me of another Grandma recipe; stuffed buns. You ground Spam and Velveeta in a meat grinder and spread the mixtue on white bread hot dog buns, then wrapped each bun in wax paper and put them on a cookie sheet in about a 250 degree oven for about 10 to 15 minutes, I think. Loved those. She’d make piles of them an I don’t think there was ever one left. Wonder if they would still taste that good.

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      2. I would guess Grandma’s Spam can had the key you broke off the top of the can, and then ‘un-wrapped’ the strip of metal to open the can and leave the razor sharp edge perfect for cutting cookies. Today’s cans with the safety top wouldn’t be the same…. None the less; I can send you some empty cans if needed.

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      3. there has got to be a veggie spam possibilities. im just not sure who would seek it out besides me. and we cant taste test it to see if its close. start with a tofu and add what?

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      4. My culinary claims to fame as a grandma are squeer (square in grandson speak) eggs and cinnamon toast log cabins (passed on from my grandma). I was given a goofy gadget that you put a still-warm hardboiled egg in and turn knob forcing it into a cube shape, cool, and voila, a squeer egg! The grandboys still ask for them.

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      5. I would love to have that gadget for squeer eggs, not tell anybody and just have them show up some morning… back to that “surprise” day from last week.

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  11. I don’t think any of my Mom’s recipes were older than the classic Betty Crocker cookbook–her mother was apparently one of those “handful of this, pinch of that and why can’t you follow this?” cooks (not a patient person, either), so she had to learn on her own, with Betty’s help. One of my friends is an old hippie, so she has a fascinating collection of early vegetarian cookbooks: you know, the kind that are printed in colored ink on brown paper (often in faux-handwritten font) and illustrated with cartoons, and spend a lot of time carefully explaining the benefits of brown rice or what “miso” is and how you might get it if you live anywhere but San Francisco. Relentlessly healthy, but with some tweaking (like adding salt!) many of the recipes are actually useful. Most of my recipes are significantly newer–now is a fabulous time to be vegan, and there are new cookbooks (a lot of them ethnic and punk instead of the tired old “California cuisine”) published every month. Still on the hunt for the perfect Indian vegan cookbook, but next on the list is the new Latin book. Empanadas, here I come!

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    1. I still have a couple of those “hippie, relentlessly healthy” cookbooks. When I became a vegetarian (back when the dinosaurs still roamed the earth according to the teenager), it wasn’t very common. I didn’t even MEET another vegetarian the first two years… until I went away to college. Back then no vegetarian restaurants, grocery sections, cookbooks… you could hardly cobble together a vegetarian meal at a regular restaurant and people looked at you like you had frogs coming out your ears when you mentioned it. SO much easier now! And the cookbooks that have been coming out the last 10 years – marvelous!

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      1. i got aced at a restaurant one time and swore it would never happen again. i have always eaten well in steak houses. i laugh because i have salad, potato, vegetable and often mushrooms. that with a couple of beers and i was so full i could not understand where the others had room for a 16oz steak on top of it. i went into a spot called the kooch street fish house (memorable name eh) in portland or and told them i was a veggie and it evidently had come up before because the response was to have everyone in the kitchen do a veggie dish so i got like 10 veggie side dishes, each better than the one before. if you go in today and say i’m a veggie handle it for me, the results come back mixed. lots of chef schools teach enough to put stuff on a plate but not much in the way of imagination. you get a iceberg salad with a tomato on it 50% of the time.

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    2. We have that old, red Betty Crocker cookbook from the early 1950’s. I still use it and we refer to it as “Red Betty”. It has good Christmas cookie and bread recipes in it

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      1. I have two Betty cook books – one that is older and one newer. The newer one has some good short cuts in it for the “modern cook” (read: Mom’s working and needs dinner prepped an on the table in under an hour…and it’s gotta be easy after the day I had…), but you have to go back to the older one for some of the time-tested basics. New one has a good banana muffin recipe that uses Bisquick that is darn handy when the bananas go brown a little too fast in the summer, but is lacking in the more “old fashioned” baking. So I keep ’em both.

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      2. Since my mother is visiting we just got out all her old recipes and cookbooks. (Red Betty went to my nephew who cherises the old thing)! She is happily looking through all these old church cookbooks. Due to the Alzheimers, she cannot remember what she had for breakfast, but she went directly to the cookbook that Grandma found her flatbread recipe in. Very weird.

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    3. … like The Vegetarian Epicure where everything revolved around a potato skin broth, and remember Laurel’s Kitchen , and I still have my <Moosewood and <Alice's Restaurant cookbooks… Sigh.

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  12. i have lots of veggie recipes from the 60s when being a vegetarian meant cooking for yourself because even french fries were fried in lard. i used to order cheese burgers hold the burger at mcdonalds but they sometimes would fry the bread on the grease ladenb grill and give it that fine burger taste so i ended up stashing a lot of recipes. vegetarian cheese enchaladas was a fave. my mom was a campbells soup can cook. whatever it said is what she meant to do but sometimes she would get preoccupied and it would dawn on her later that the milk was supposed to be added before the flour or some such minor detail. she did have lots of hand me downs from her mother that went back a long time. frozen fruit salad , ceasar salad, waldorf salad, were the extravagant ones. most were like the mashed potato recipes. boil it, add milk butter and salt and wallah food on the plate.
    no references to children of the vine, chop with a sharp rock and leave no survivors, squeeze like your helpless enemy in battle and my personal favorite two tablespoon of seawater with water removed. i think you are onto something there dale. my problem comes from the fact thta y people come form northern minnesota and central north dakota and when you boil the water away the stuff thats left tastes a lot like whats alredy in the pan. kind of brown. my old family recipes are kind of brown tasting. hardly ever use the flower of the rotting log.

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    1. Ha! I used to order the Whopper at Burger King, hold the whopper. They did eventually get used to me and my “weirdness” at the BK near my house.

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      1. today its on the menu ( not the printed menu but there are instruction for a bk veggie whopper. and the mcdonalds used to have a bit in macdonalds u where you used to get trained t be a burger flipper , on how to make the grilled chees complete with turning the hamburger buns inside out and fried onions. i remember the time the guy charged me a dime for that sandwhich. california in the 60s i think

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  13. The two oldest recipes I have are the ones for “Norma’s Chicken” a baked chicken dish that is one of our favorites. Norma is my aunt and godmother and I only know how to make it since I watched her. It is not written down. The other recipe is for “Star Cookies”. These are thick, huge, star-shaped, soft molasses Christmas cookies with thick icing and colored decorative sugar. They have to be cut in half since a person can’t eat a whole one, and the star cookie cutters were homemade out of scrap tin. My Aunt Leona made them for years and she got the recipe from her mother-in-law, Mother Priester, who died long before I was born. I can never get the cookies to be as good as my aunt’s.

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  14. I have some “occasional” recipes that I use that came from Grandma – the krumkake recipe is hers and had to be translated a bit from “a handful of this, a pinch of that…” The last instruction before putting the batter on the iron is “beat the batter long and hard.” Mmmmkay. How hard? When is too long?…(I found that out this year – there is a “sweet spot” where it is thick, not yet turning back to butter…if it gets too thick, the krumkake stays a little soft after it cools. At least this year I didn’t start the kitchen on fire…)

    Most other recipes gleaned from Mom or other older sources have had to be altered or tossed out completely due to Darling Husband’s dietary restrictions. Lactose intolerant (there goes half the Norwegian recipes), also doesn’t do well with onions, bell peppers or anything spicier than table salt. Sooo….out goes half of what I ate growing up. I have altered Mom’s “cheater’s lasagna” recipe to accommodate Husband – it already had cottage cheese instead of ricotta, and he can handle cottage cheese if it’s cultured, but changed up how I dealt with the sauce to avoid onions common in most jarred sauces (yeah yeah – I know – I shouldn’t be buying jarred sauce…sue me…it’s fast) and swapped in spinach. Cream of mushroom soup in the chicken and rice from my youth has been substituted out as well. And roast goes into the crock pot instead of a dutch oven, but with the pretty much the same mix of root veggies Mom used (minus the onions).

    Hmm. I have leftover molasses from making gingerbread for Christmas. Maybe I’ll dig out Mom’s oatmeal molasses bread recipe this weekend – that’s an all day sort of bread, but the house smells great while it’s rising. Bonus: it makes an awful mess in the kitchen that I can make Husband clean up. 🙂

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    1. my first wife was really frusrrated that i was vegetarian. she had spent a lifetime collecting her favorite recipes to cook for her husband and then i showed up. thats only part of why she ended up being first wife.

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      1. I think cooking vegetarian would be easier than taking onions out of most recipes…they are everywhere. Even if I wanted to use prepared sauces and other such foods, I mostly can’t b/c of the dang onions. I do have a few things that I serve that are either vegetarian or could be made that way easily (I have a good bean florentine soup recipe that adapts well to vegetable stock and no ham – it’s supposed to use pre-made stock from the grocery store for quick prep, but finding stock w/o onions is a chore).

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      2. Anna, for the sauce, when you have an extra moment make up a boatload of the stuff and freeze it in regular size batches (yes, you do have to remember to take it out to defrost in the morning, but some days that actually happens 🙂 )

        I once made a gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free strata for an Easter brunch that must have been pretty good, as it was devoured before the pastor I had made it for got a piece.

        Rice milk is a fine and wonderful thing-there is also a vegan margarine I have used to make things with that worked well-Earth-Something at Mississippi Market (where they also carry gjetost, AND I can easily walk to it from my house 🙂 !

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      3. I remember a promise of gjetost as well for BBC – also chocolate mousse. I made the mousse and wound up eating with Husband (it has eggs, but no milk or cream)…

        And there have been years I have made boatloads of tomato sauce and put it in the freezer for later use. The same friend who helps with krumkake every year was in on these adventures as well. Those sauce-making days are referred to collectively as “The Great Tomato Slaughter”…nice to have it in the freezer and ready when I need it, but man it’s a lot of work on the day of the slaughter…now that I think about it I have tomatoes in the freezer from my CSA this summer that need to be peeled and sauced…another weekend project for New Years. 🙂

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  15. My mom learned to cook from a classic 1917 cookbook, “A Thousand Ways to Please a Husband.” The recipes are mostly dreck, but the book is a hoot because of the social attitudes. Newlywed Bettina and Bob star in this book. Bettina looks like Myrna Loy and works hard to convince Bob she is a worthy cook and homekeeper.

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  16. I have a family cookbook that an Aunt typed and put out. Many recipes are labeled ‘Grandmas ____’ or ‘Great Aunt So and so’s______’ but I wouldn’t really say any of them are in the day to day repertoire…

    Another road trip to Fairmont today and then we’ll be done. (Picking up a picnic table and thinking of warmer days!)

    Tootles!

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  17. dale
    this is getting kind of obvious but isnt it time for the first baboons cookbook. ill get teh printing done cheap if someone has the organazational wherewithall to ut it together. we need a cover design and a dale inspired title, theme around recipe groupings and punchline as to the bait an switch nature of how these all came to be gathered.
    interesting observation all you veggies, i am in orlando and needed some homeopathic medicine so i went into whole foods down here. there is one in minneapolis too but i alway view it as too expensive and support the little co ops instead, well the place is packed because its christmas time and everyone is buying the last minute things they need ( the last minute things vegetarians and old hippies need are very different form the needs of the typical grocery store shopper) i am wandering arounf looking at the100 kinds of delicious bread the 6 rows of deli style presentation of health based glop and preppared wonderfulness (6 kinds of veggie burgers) 15 soups and all of a sudden i notice…. there are hundreds of people with customer staff and all and not one fat person. it wasn’t a bunch of rail thin folks but everyone had a very comfortable body and a robust complexion. the staff looked a little shell shocked. i am guessing that a bazillion old hippies all at once can take its toll ( i was thinking of your past life joanne) a critique on lifestyle this is not , simply an observation.

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      1. I’m still looking for the distinction between the Great Depression and the Great Recession. To me it appears we still suffered, but we had more technology to distract ourselves.

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  18. Dorothy’s Chex Mix

    10 ½ oz box of Cheerios
    7 oz. pretzels
    6 oz Wheat Chex
    6 oz Rice Chex
    ½ lb. peanuts
    Salt
    ½ lb mixed nuts
    ¼ lb butter
    ½ c. bacon grease
    1 T. Worcestershire sauce
    1 T. garlic powder

    Combine butter, bacon grease, Worcestershire sauce and garlic. Pour over mixture of cry ingredients. Salt to tast. Put in a 250* over for 2 hours. Stire ever 20 minutes. Turn off oven and leave overnight.

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  19. Here is one I have had fun with. Note the source:

    Kate Hepburn’s Brownies
    2 ounces (2 squares) unsweetened chocolate
    1/2 c unsalted butter
    1 c sugar
    2 large eggs, lightly beaten
    1/2 tsp vanilla extract
    1/4 c all-purpose flour
    1/4 tsp salt
    1/2 c coarsely chopped walnuts

    Preheat oven to 325o F. Butter and flour an 8-inch square baking pan. Melt the chocolate with the butter in a saucepan over low heat. Remove from the heat and stir in the sugar. Stir in the eggs and vanilla and mix until smooth. Add the flour, salt and nuts and stir until smooth. Pour into the prepared pan. Bake until a toothpick comes out clean from the center, about 40 minutes. (Really rich and chewy; one is a whole desert.)

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  20. The easiest trick in my book is a small can of chicken and a can of cream of chicken soup, mixed and heated and served over Bisquick drop biscuits.

    I learned to bake cookies from recipes in my mom’s Better Homes & Gardens cookbook, so when I struck out on my own it was the first cookbook I bought. I found, though, that they had made some revisions in the book by the time I got my own. I was so disappointed to find that the brownies didn’t seem to taste quite the same. After my mom died I brought home her copy of the cookbook and had a chance to compare them side by side. My mother’s cookbook has no date or ISBN printed in it, and the gingham pattern on the cover runs parallel with the edge of the book. Mine has a date of 1973, and the gingham runs diagonally. I was right about the brownies being different – the newer recipe added an extra quarter cup of flour and subtly changed the texture. My mom’s book also has some of those weirdly lurid-looking photos where the reds are a little too red and everything is glistening as if it’s been lacquered. Other photos are in black and white, I suppose to avoid budget overruns.

    If you haven’t seen it, I recommend James Lileks’ book The Gallery of Regrettable Food. Here’s a taste (so to speak).

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  21. Greetings! I’ve been lurking or just unable to participate lately because of being out of town, no internet or sick. Feeling better today, but I have nothing interesting to add. No handed down recipes here as you might have guessed from my guest blog entry before Thanksgiving. I think my grandmothers were decent cooks, but mainly Depression Era stuff and nothing handed down. The only recipe I think I might want was my maternal grandmother’s recipe for German Potato Salad. That was good but I’m not really into white potatoes.

    So carry on my fine friends and indulge our passion for talking about food. And just to point out the spell checker does seem to be in place. The few times I make an error, I see the squiggly red line. You have to notice it and make the change yourself. Also, it does not correct word usage or grammar errors — meaning it won’t notice if you use the word from or form incorrectly; or to, too or two, or cry versus dry, etc.

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  22. OK, my oldest has to be one of my Grandma’s norwegian recipes. I posted her Kringla recipe earlier this month… Probably the lefse recipe, and the Kumla — a potato dumpling that’s (supposed to) float in a simmering ham broth. All the above are just another excuse to eat butter, melted or otherwise.

    I have a little book from Williamsburg, VA, called Recipes from an Eighteenth Century Kitchen: Being a collection of the most approved recipes of…. Taken from a Variety of PEIOD COOKERY Books, Transcribed and Presented in the NEATEST MANNER for use by the MODERN COOK. Those are really old, but you can tell they’ve been updated (dang!). If I find a good, short one I’ll copy it in later.

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  23. Select a large, plump spring chicken; kill, scald, and pluck. Draw and cut into natural joints. Then put them in ice water for 5 minutes. Drain, and place on a platter in the icebox for 2 hours. Dredge thickly with flour and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place one cup lard in frying pan and when it is hot, saute the chicken taking care to turn it often so it will not burn, but cook thoroughly. Good with cream gravy. Some prefer frying bacon, enough with the chicken, to make the required amount of fat. If you do, serve some of the bacon with the chicken.
    This is from a 1914 Pillsbury cookbook and it’s how I remember my mom making chicken. I also remember witnessing the killing of the cluckers and how they ran helter skelter for a few moments without their heads. It very much startled the wee child I was and are partially responsible for the personality flaws that remain today.

    Hey Everybody – I posted a “that’s what she said” (can’t help it – food topics affect me this way ever since I saw 9 & 1/2 Weeks) after one of Tim’s lines up there somewhere, and I was looking forward to doing more, but Word Press wouldn’t let me. I got a pop up message saying, “Duplicate comment detected; it looks as though you’ve already said that!” And I said, “So who are you, my mother??” but WP just ignored me. Man, that’s cold!

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  24. I’ll have to post my family’s recipe for Pannukakku when I get home. Yum! I have no idea how long it’s been passed down, but I’d guess since before my great- and great-great-grandparents came over from Finland. It’s my favorite breakfast to have on a cold winter’s morning. Put a little butter and syrup, or boysenberry or raspberry sauce on it and voila, easy breakfast! 🙂

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  25. Crow Girl – my neighbor is a vegan cook, and likes ….”Lord Krishna’s Cuisine, the Art of Indian Vegetarian Cooking” by Yamuna Devi.

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