Saturday, September 30, 2006

The Red Spiral Notebook - "Cake, Cookies, Pudding"

Later today, I'm going to a Coffee party at a friend's house. She asked us to bring a treat that would go well with coffee and tea. My first thought was to make a run to Starbucks for some yummy Biscotti. How ridiculous! This is a great opportunity to try out some recipes from Grandma Daisy's notebook! So, I retrieved the notebooks from my cabinet and started looking. These sound delicious:

Crunchy Coffee Cake
(looks like this was cut out from an old magazine)
2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp Calumet Baking Powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 cup sour cream
1/2 cup Chiffon Margarine
2 eggs
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 cup Post Grape-Nuts Cereal
1/2 cup sugar
2 tsp cinnamon

Combine flour, 1 cup sugar, the soda, baking powder, and salt in a mixing bowl; mix well. Add sour cream, margarine, eggs, and vanilla. Blend at low speed of electric mixer or by hand; then beat1 minute at medium speed or 150 strokes by hand.
Combine cereal, 1/2 cup sugar, and the cinnamon; mix. Pour 1/3 of the batter into a greased 9-inch square pan; sprinkle with 1/3 of the cereal mixture. Continue layering, ending with the cereal. Bake at 350 for 40 to 45 minutes or until cake tester inserted in center comes out clean.
Makes 8 to 10 servings.
NOTE: If desired, this recipe may be doubled and baked in a greased 13x9 inch pan at 350 for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until the cake tester comes out clean.

Newspaper clipping circa 1969 (Jewish month of Tishri and the start of the year 5731 in the Jewish calendar)...Apple, honey and carrot dishes in different versions are served at the Rosh Hashannah dinner. Here are a few of the best known recipes.

1 cup carrot pulp
5 eggs seperated
1 cup sugar
1 pinch salt
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup walnuts, chopped
1/2 pint cream, whipped
Cook and strain carrots; squeeze dry. Mix egg yolks, sugar and salt and beat lightly. Stir in carrot pulp and fold in stiffly beaten egg whites. Add chopped nuts and vanilla. Bake in spring-form pan 45 minutes at 400 degrees. Cool. Serve with whipped cream.

3 eggs
1 cup sugar
1 cup honey
1 cup boiled coffee
2 Tbsp salad oil
3 1/4 cup flour
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp each: baking solda, ginger, cinnamon, nutmeg.
2 Tbsp chopped nuts
Beat eggs well, adding sugar gradually. Mix honey and coffee, add oil and dry ingredients, sifted together. Add to beaten egg mixture. Reserve chopped nuts.
Sprinkle bottom of greased pan with nuts. Pour in dough. Bake in 350 oven 40 minutes. If desired, add 1/2 cup chopped nuts to dough.

Cut & Paste Recipes from Grandma Daisy

One of my most precious possessions is a collection of three small 9 1/2 inch x 6 inch spiral notebooks. One is red, one is blue and one is green. Each one is worn from decades of use. Each one is bulging with hand picked recipes from across the span of my Grandma Daisy's life as a new wife in late 1930's, mother in the 1940's, hostess, Grandmother and active member of many committees, including DAR.
Although I have also inherited my Grandma Daisy's Good Housekeeping CookBook, Third Printing, 1955, and her Betty Crocker's Picture CookBook, Seventh Printing, 1950, these are not nearly as dear to me. When I think of her putting these spiral notebooks together over the years, testing out different styles and tastes, I feel like a piece of time has been preserved.
The red spiral is titled "Cake, Cookies, Pudding" across the cover and she taped a vintage drawing by Louise Howe Ewing that depicts a cheerful lady rolling out dough on a simple table, surrounded by various baking supplies. I believe it was part of a greeting card.

The Red Spiral Notebook

The blue spiral is the fullest one, newspaper clippings hanging over the edges. This one is titled "Bread, Candies, Soups, Pickles". The green spiral is titled "Meat, Chicken, Fish, Sauce, Salads, Vegetable". Although each spiral had it's own title, I have found that several recipes are mixed around in other spirals. You just may find a wonderful recipe for "Chinese Chicken Livers" in the blue spiral, which you would expect to find in the green instead. I guess that's one of the benefits of compiling your own recipes, you make the rules.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

Twisted turns on the Path

So here the path takes another twisted turn. The way is rough and dark. I've had to sell my home and close my business, letting go of dreams. In times like this I hold tight to the essentials of life, my children, my story, my faith. It's hard not to loose a sense of who I am and where I'm going. Stumbling along, grasping for something solid.
A faint voice across the years reaches out to say I have not been forgotten, that I do matter. Somehow I'm getting up again, dusting off my knees and focusing my sight on tommorow. Re-energized to never give up and never give in. It is only high noon and there's still so much to see and do.
Another voice invites me to consider other options, helping re-build confidence in my abilities. Yes! I do have alot to offer. I do have compassion and empathy, love and tenderness. Life is callous at times, but I don't have to become that way. I would rather suffer because of my kindness and generosity, then have abundance through greed and selfishness.
As I venture out looking for new opportunities, I can already feel revitalized, full of possibilities and a smoother path.

Friday, January 27, 2006

Just To Be

I am a pilgrim on a journey. The road is mapped out ahead, but I can only see a few yards in the distance. One step at a time I boldly move with anticipation and curiosity. Sometimes I face pain around a corner, other times I am overwhelmed with kindness. In my pack, I carry a precious trove of memories. As I close my eyes to rest, I am reminded of friendly faces and peaceful places from years before. Each person has impressed me, contributed to my identity in some way. Some have travelled only a few short steps with me and others have travelled many miles. Some friends walk along for awhile, then dissappear for a season, before returning again to share their stories, their battles. I am not alone, even when I am by myself. This pack of memories keeps me warm and gives me hope of things to come. I am forever grateful to each one that has considered me a friend, a sister, a daughter, a part of their family. On this journey I have come across people of all walks of life. My hope is to befriend them and help them along on their journey; help them grow outside their shell, outside the walls built out of fear and hurt. This journey is not easy. There are no chariots to whisk us across the rocks and valleys. There are no wings to carry us over the swamps and deserts. But, there are friends who show us how to use the rocks, find beauty in the swamps and peace in the desert. This journey offers us an opportunity to discover our strengths. As we put our talents into practice, the sharper they become. The more we use our strengths to build others up and encourage them along the way, the sweeter our journey becomes. I hope that one day on your journey you come face to face with the Author of your pilgrimage, the Creator of life, the One true God who gives each journey a purpose worth living for. I've discovered that there is only One and no other. Only One God that provides the daily strength needed and peace that never ends, even along the darkest trails. There is no other love to compare with the love of God. Nothing else keeps my feet grounded and my eyes set on the future, the work that is yet to come. So, as I continue on my daily walk, I pray for those that have crossed my path and for those that feel lost in the dark. I pray that I may carry the Light to others who have given up and are ready to quit. Don't give up! There is only One Hope, One Way, One Sacrifice and it is not within us to save ourselves. The answer lies in placing our hope and trust in the True Shepherd, who was willing to give up His own life for us and by doing that became our Perfect Sacrifice, our Saviour. When we couldn't find our way, He opened the gate. He bridged the gap. He called our name. Through Jesus, In Jesus and With Jesus, I can boldly travel along without fear, guilt or shame.
May your journey be meaningful, may God open your eyes to see and your ears to hear all that He desires for you.