Thursday, 30 December 2010
While we were at Sue & Jim's this afternoon, after Megan and Ben had left, I went through Sue & Jim's recipes with them. It was quite funny, because they started off saying 'Oh, we don't have many to give you, because we just cook off the top of our head. But you must have the chocolate fudge pudding recipe...' But as we went on, they found a few more 'must have' recipes and a few more good ones that they wanted to contribute. I asked if we could go round to Gran's house sometime and go through her old cookbooks, but Jim said Uncle Don had already looked and couldn't find any. Jim thought she probably just kept all the recipes in her head and didn't use cookbooks. I was pretty bummed about that, since Gran was well-known in the family for her food. It seemed a shame not to pass on some of her recipes. The Edmonds Cookbook is pretty much a standard thing in any New Zealand household. Anyway, Mum has two copies of it, an edition from the 70s and a 1980 edition. I have a 1998 edition, which was given to me when I first went flatting. Sue & Jim also had the 1980 edition. As we were going through the books, they pulled out this older edition of the Edmonds Cookbook. I said 'Let's check the date, so we can note it in the book.' It was a 1955 edition. Sue & Jim looked at each other and Sue said 'That's not our copy. That's older than us.' And Jim said 'Wow, this is Mum's copy. This is Mum's book.' It was great to have the recipe book that Gran used, but was going to be difficult to pull any recipes out of it to attribute to her. I asked Jim to go through it with me, page by page, and see which recipes he remembered his mother making. He remembered a few and even gave me some quotes to put in with them, but also, Gran had made notes on a few recipes, so we knew she'd made them. Excellent! We have Gran's recipes! Jim said that the recipes themselves probably evolved over the years, but that she would have started with the basic recipes in the Edmonds. I was so pleased. What a find. I also asked Sue to contribute a couple of non-food recipes. I figured we had a recipe for playdough (and one for Wartime dog biscuits!), we could put in a few of her 'recipes' for her aromatherapy stuff. So she gave me two to put in. From Jim: Sugarless Fatless Milkless Banana Ice Cream Rhubarb Cinnamon Cake Marshmallow Surprises Gluten Free Chocolate Cream Biscuits Gluten Free Shortbread Jim's Hummus Caramel Meringue Plum Sauce - 'Only works well if you use the right plums - Black Doris, picked from the tree in Grumps' garden. Lots of slow and careful cooking. Stinks the house out, but it's worth it.' From Sue: Chocolate Fudge Pudding Date & Nut Loaf Cocoa Butter Massage Bars with Sweet Pea Bouquet After sun lotion Red Cooked Chicken Bakewell Tarts Banana Cake Peppermint Creams From Gran: Cheese Biscuits or Busters ANZAC Biscuits Vanilla Kisses One Egg Chocolate Sponge - 'You can multiply this up to ten times and it still works well.' Raspberry Delights Rock Cakes Ginger Gems Cheese Scones - 'These were Dad's favourite.' Plain Scones - 'Mum would churn out heaps of these if she had guests, just at the drop of a hat. She probably modified the recipe slightly over the years, because she never used the book towards the end. People used to rave about them, how soft and light they were. She was renowned for her scones amongst family and friends.' Aaron says he doesn't have any recipes to give me, which is a shame considering he's a trainee chef (or is he an actual chef these days?). I understand if the book just isn't his thing, but it's a shame. I'm not going to pressure anyone though. I encouraged him, but left it at that. He did say he had a notebook of recipes that he thought might be Eves Pantry recipes that Steve had given him. So he's going to try and pass that back to us and I'll copy any Steve wants to add in to the book. :) Oh, and while Megan was there, I asked if she wanted to contribute. She's on the family tree as she is Josh's mother. She said she definitely had one to contribute, so that's awesome. :) I'll let you know when I get it.
Wednesday, 29 December 2010
Today we went over to Poppa Pete's. It was the first time we'd seen him since Christmas. We had a chat and spent a bit of time just catching up, then we asked Poppa Pete if he had any recipes he wanted to contribute. He started off giving us a few of his, then, wonder of wonders, he brought out Granny Rhodes (his mother)'s recipe book and Granny Booth (Nana Rose's mother)'s recipe book. AWESOME!! Nana Rose had written a few down too, so we got some of hers as well. It was so great. SO great. :) Check this out - this is the front page of Granny Rhodes' recipe book:
Tuesday, 28 December 2010
Yesterday I went up to Mum's, planning to borrow her rollerblades (Mum and I have the same size feet). Unfortunately when the kids and I got up there, it was bucketing down with rain. So definitely no outdoor activities. I figured that since I was up there, and stuck inside, I'd go through Mum's cookbooks with her and get recipes for my Family Recipe Book project. I got HEAPS!! Some are even from a cookbook of Nanny's...
Thursday, 16 December 2010
Yay, I got some more recipes today! Three, from my cousin Brooke in Melbourne. Woohoo! Funny that the recipes are arriving from the most unlikely sources. I expected them to come from Mum, Jim, Nana Burland, etc. :) Just goes to show what I know! Brooke sent me really basic, simple recipes for 'Mum's Stirfry Vegetables', Spaghetti Bolognaise and Burritos. Brooke wrote 'Given that mum was never the brightest chef in the house, we have very simple and basic recipes that we generally eat during the week.' All good, that's just like most working families. In the book they go!
Wednesday, 15 December 2010
I got my first recipe for my new project today! And unexpectedly, it was from Mike, Steve's dad in Brisbane. He sent me a recipe for Golden Syrup Dumplings. He says 'Here’s probably my most favourite desert of forever. My mum used to make it for us as kids. Now I’m drooling like one of my dogs looking for a handout. Just thinking about them does it to me.' Yay! My project is officially started! Now to wait for more recipes to arrive!!
Wednesday, 1 December 2010
Today I sent out letters to as many members of mine and Steve's extended family as I could. Parents, siblings, aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents, great-aunts, great-uncles....everyone. Here's what I wrote: I am working on a new project, which I was hoping you might be able to contribute to. I would like to make a family recipe book, using only recipes which have meaning to the family. You will have seen those wonderful recipe books in the stores, like ‘Grandma’s Italian Recipes’ or ‘Favourite Family Dinners’. I want to make our own one. A recipe book with our recipes - the ones we use all the time, the ones we save for special occasions, or the ones we’ve nearly forgotten but would like to pass on to the next generation. For instance, I will include Pop’s recipe for crème liqueur, Maureen Hancock’s recipe for scalloped potatoes which we used to have every Christmas without fail when we were children (woe betide her if she forgot to make it!), and the coconut ice recipe that we used to make as gifts for friends and family. There is the recipe for Amish Friendship Muffins that Mum gave us when we went flatting and Uncle Philip’s Welsh rarebit has to be included. And there are many more… It can be anything from playdough to roast lamb, homemade lemonade to rose potpourri. Any and all recipes are gratefully accepted. With each recipe you contribute (and by all means, the more the merrier so that we don’t overwhelm the book with just recipes from our side!!), please let me know where the recipe came from and the significance of it to you and/or your family. For example, my husband’s fool-proof recipe for the most delicious chocolate cake comes from the back of the Nestle Melt’s packet. He’s used it when making cakes for clients and it has been a success every time. Everyone always asks for the recipe and he refuses to tell. Ten years of professional baking, and the best recipe is off the back of a packet…! Or, perhaps you have a recipe that has been passed down from a grandparent or parent that you can remember them making? I know my mother remembers fondly that her mother was an excellent pastry chef, and always reminded my mother to keep the pastry cold. It can be just a few sentences or a page of memories – just whatever it takes to tell the story. I have discovered that while the family history and genealogy is my passion, everyone loves hearing the stories. If you have a copy of the original recipe, then please feel free to email or post a copy to me. Don’t cringe if it’s in your handwriting – that’s PERFECT! Copies of snippets out of magazines are also wonderful – I know Mum’s playdough recipe came from out of the playgroup newsletter. If you have any photos to go with the recipes, they are very welcome. Modern or older photos, it doesn’t matter, I’m sure we’ll end up with a mix of both. The more material we can get in the book, the more interesting the book will be. If you aren’t able to scan and email photos, then let me know and we’ll see if we can find someone who might be able to arrange to scan or have a copy made. I am happy to get copies of the book printed for anyone. When it is finished, I will contact everyone and let them know a price. At that time, you can still say yes or no – we certainly won’t be getting them printed and then harassing anyone to pay!! Thank you in advance for your contribution. Really, the more the merrier – I’d love for this book to be stuffed full of recipes, memories and the essence of family life in the kitchen. Love from Elle Now to sit back and wait. I'm trying not to get my hopes up, but I can't help it!