Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Home Cooking

Randomness while I continue editing Matt's story.

My mother grew up on a farm. As such, she was accustomed to helping her mother make meals for all the farmhands, and one of the things she is to this day is a hostess. If you come over, you get fed. Even if it isn't meal time. Even if you aren't hungry. Even if you just ate. She was a good cook, and every now and then she'd experiment with something new - which always turned out great.

Except steak.

She'd make steak in the broiler every now and then, and the joke was that it was Bor-charred steak (those of you how know me will get the inside joke on that). We always had to eat what was set in front of us, my three sisters and I, whether we liked it or not. One of my sisters is famous for her pile of "skin, fat and bones" that she couldn't eat. Me? I remember hiding peas under the rim of my plate (we didn't have a dog, you see). How I got away with that, I'll never know. Every now and then we were served something that absolutely didn't agree with us. For me, it was asparagus. For one of my sisters, it was beets. Although my parents always insisted we try it, there were certain lines that were drawn when one day the kitchen curtains were a mottled beet-red. Or everyone was excused after the asparagus made a return trip to the plate.

As a working mother, I didn't always make well rounded meals the way my mother did, although I tried. I inherited her adventurous nature in the kitchen and often tried new meals to break out of the doldrums, in addition to the old standbys. Mealtime was important. It was when the whole family got together at the same time. I held that tradition as long as I could with my own kids, and I still remember days with my kids crying at the table because they had to "try" the peas. I know you don't like vegetables, but they're good for you! I'm not trying to poison you, honest! The funny end of that story is that now they eat their vegetables better than I do. I hear recipes from my children that I'd never make, or with ingredients I don't keep in the house. They must have learned that at school. Good nutrition. Or maybe I didn't do as bad as I thought I did...


  1. When my twins were still in high chairs, I used to serve them canned mixed vegetables. They'd pick out their favorites, so when they were done, I switched their plates. One of my girls ate virtually nothing but bread and potatoes and corn -- we called her 'starch mouth'. Today? She's a triathlete and doing things like adding kale to smoothies, and preparing healthier food than I do.

    1. yep - my son has meatless days (the one who was sure I was poisoning him with vegetables). We joked last time he was home about eating cookies (I had some and was trying not to eat them all). "Eat a cookie! Didn't I raise you right?"