Like many of you, I grew up with the wonderful smells coming from the kitchen each night as our mothers prepared dinner. There were times when I swear, I could smell my mom’s cooking half-way across town from work. I’d call her and ask, “Are you making chicken and dumplings?” She’d laugh and tell me that she was in the process of preparing it.
Now I’m not sure if that was the power of suggestion or if mom and I were mentally connected those days. And I’m not about to question it, I only know that when I got home there was chicken and dumplings simmering on the stove.
And then there are the holidays when the Christmas baking starts after Thanksgiving. Mom would be in the kitchen making cut out sugar cookies to freeze and frost about a week before Christmas. She’d make popcorn balls, seafoam, fudge…all the yummy sweets that we only got at that time of year.
My material grandmother’s lemon meringue pie was to die for, as was her Sunday fried chicken sizzling in an electric skillet. Since I was the youngest of my grandparent’s 20 plus grandchildren, I never got to taste any of the Norwegian or Danish food she may have made. My material grandparents were first generation Americans, while my paternal side arrived before the American Revolution.
I do remember though that THE cookbooks of the day were Fannie Farmer and Betty Crocker.
Now, I’m not a baker and I don’t really enjoy cooking the way my husband did. He was the chef in our household and there is a bookshelf filled from top to bottom with cookbooks he collected over the years. I guess I need to find things to make myself now.
My creativity is with the written word or on occasion with a crochet hook and yarn, while my husband, mother and grandmother’s creativity brought wonderful and mouthwatering smells from the kitchen.