Saturday, October 16, 2021

Recovery of a Recipe

Since I lost most everything, recipes are a problem for me. I rarely use a recipe for everyday food. But, for holiday food, I did use recipes. I tried to remember what they were, but have little idea. However, I looked at a lot of recipes and discovered some recipes from her were off cans. I am quite sure I knew this, just forgot. 

I still have not recovered/remembered all my recipes. I do have the pumpkin pie recipe. I never made it exactly like my mother did. I just subbed dark brown sugar for the light brown sugar she used. So, that was an easy. 

The recipe for pound cake is the hard one. I am looking for a recipe that calls for cooking an hour and twenty minutes. That is my only clue...lol. I do know the first time I made it, I had no chocolate squares to melt. I used cocoa when I subbed for the baking chocolate and never bothered to get the chocolate called for. So, that is a mission. I don't want to have to bake chocolate pound cakes until I find the right recipe! 

Right now, my goal is to make my mother's spaghetti recipe. A week is how long I plan to sit with a notebook and try to remember all she put in spaghetti. It has about 20 ingredients. 

My advice is to never have the only copy of a recipe you need to keep. I would not put these on the computer, a thumb drive, and in another location just like you would keep an extra copy of papers you need otherwise! I never shared it with anyone except for one person who is now dead. 

I once developed a recipe for biscotti that could be adapted for add-ins, different flavors and spices. It did not have lots of sugar or fat. Well, I left that on the counter on a scrap of paper. Someone "helping" me threw it out along with many receipts. They were all in a neat stack, not just in disarray. I may try to recreate that recipe, too. 

Unfortunately, I am missing about a half dozen recipes, not just one.

Have you ever lose a recipe through catastrophe or neglect? What recipe did you lose? How did you recover or recreate it? Did you give up or settle for a recipe not the same?

32 comments:

  1. I just googled chocolate pound cake bake 1 hour 20 minutes and found at least one that calls for baking chocolate.

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    Replies
    1. JMB,
      I will have to search for that! Maybe it won't be too hard after all. That still leaves the spaghetti recipe which no search will find.

      Delete
  2. I suppose you've already thought of this, but I would think a sister would have these recipes, too.

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  3. No, but I do often wish I had my grandma's recipe cards! I have no idea whatever happened to them. I'm guessing my mom just got rid of them. I don't even know what happened to my mom's recipe box (and of course neither does she now)

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    Replies
    1. One,
      I would hate that kind of loss, too. Your grandmother's card would be almost historic. Does she have things in storage anywhere?

      Delete
    2. No, just what she has at her apartment.

      Delete
  4. Okay Linda, do not laugh at me. I have been going back through you blog since 2010. It is like going to the library and picking out a good book. I have enjoyed reading and have been heart broken in other parts. You handle your self well through good and bad times. I am much like you. I am a widow and live on a fixed income. I do though have a good amount set aside and do not have to live the way I do. I just choose this because I want to have enough set aside in case I need to go into care at some point. Overall my health is good but I did need a hip replacement this year. I do not have chickens but dogs. I did grow up with chickens and my sister does have them along with her dogs. I do not know how she does it but the chickens can be out all over the large yard and her big dogs never to near them. Anyway, I have one son, grown and married that lives 20 minutes away. He now helps with the yard work since I ca n't do it. I have been very good about being frugal my whole life. My home is paid off, my son went of college for which I paid.
    I drive a 2008 car which only has 40M miles, used when I got it when it had 20M miles. It is not a fancy car but it has AC, for me that is the only thing that matters!!I only shop sales for food, clothes, household and furniture. I have never been opposed to so called 2nd hand things. I have 2 refrigerators so I can take advantage of sell on meat. I have plenty of room for dry and canned goods, a large pantry and have a big dresser in one of the bedrooms for extra storage for canned and dry goods. I never really worried about this until COVID. I have built quite a supply of things I use to be safe. Not only for me but for my pets also.
    It breaks my heart sometimes when I read your blog. You have had to struggle so much through the loss of your home, health issues and that your children are not there. It is good to have your friend Tommy. After my husband passed, his best friend became my best friend. He passed in the spring of 2020. I just want you to know we are out here just like you doing the best we can. I do not care what other people think, do or buy. I have everything I need to be happy. I do not need their attention or admiration about how I chose to live my life.

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    Replies
    1. Well, I don't know where my long reply went! Thanks for writing me about all this. I never have worried about having all that others have and never will, well, beyond basics.

      Delete
  5. I’m one of those cooks who considers a recipe a good general guide. I usually add this and that to a recipe, which is not always a good thing. People will compliment me on a recipe and ask for it, and then I’m stumped. Sometimes I never get it just right again. My dad had a sweet garlic dill pickle recipe that I lost. It makes me so sad, those were the best pickles.

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    Replies
    1. Carol,
      I do think recipes are guides. But, baking is different. And, the spaghetti recipe is unique. I wish you could find your pickle recipe.

      Delete
  6. Linda sorry I just went on and on without addressing your question. Have I ever lost a recipe and how to recover. I have lost every recipe I have kept back to my 20s, I am now in the 60s, I kept every recipe in a wooden recipe box that was a wedding gift. When my son's girlfriend (now wife, who I adore) moved in my sister came over to help move my 82 year old Mom in also. I had so much stuff coming into my home. That included my Mom's things. Not a problem to me. She decided to rearrange my kitchen (sister) somehow my recipe box disappeared. I still have not recovered from that loss.
    The only thing I have been able to recover is recipe for mandlebread, which is a Jewish kind of biscotti. Many I made so much are in my memory. I do not think I will ever get over losing that box.

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  7. Texas,
    I do understand the trauma of the loss of recipes. I wonder if someone thought it was your mom's and put it somewhere and it was discarded. My recipes written in my mother's hand that were lost hurt my heart to think of them. I do understand.

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  8. I've never really kept recipes and mom only had one book of recipes. I believe I kept one of the pages as it was a recipe for the most delicious dessert bars ever. I lost the recipe for awhile and it took me a few years to find it looking off and on. She made the bars at Christmas and now I see I can google the recipe and find it. In fact, these days I get most of my recipes off the internet. I've given away most of my cookbooks though I've since acquired a few more. I have a weakness for books. I am trying hard not to accumulate more.

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    Replies
    1. Joyful,
      Books are a weakness of mine, too. What was the dessert bar? I only had two recipe books. One Mama gave me. The other was Christmas recipes but I only used the lemon curd recipe. I did have a bound journal where I put my favorite recipes.

      Delete
    2. The dessert bars are called Dream Bars. If you google it and want to make them they are a Robin Hood (flour) recipe. They are so delicious and melt in your mouth.

      Delete
    3. Joyful,
      I will look those up tomorrow as I am going to bed before I go to sleep on the laptop.

      Delete
    4. Hi, I'll save you the search. Here is the correct version (version mom used). http://mrsbutterfingers.com/?p=938

      I can almost taste them now ;-)

      Delete
    5. Joyful,
      Thanks! That looks delicious!

      Delete
  9. Linda, I know you understand what I am talking about. These recipes are part of who you are. They are from family and friends that you have chosen to share with others. They become part of who you are. They are a gift you have been given that you want to share, to help people understand who you are and how you became the person you are. I feel when you cook for others you are giving them a glimpse into your soul. When you sit with people and share a meal there can be a memory that will never leave you. I have never felt happier than when people enjoyed something I cooked for them...

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    Replies
    1. texas,
      Yes, you do understand!!! I had a group of friends that expected the chocolate pound cake and it was Daddy's favorite. People still remember me for that. They loved it. None of them ever asked for the recipe because they knew they would have it soon at the next event...lol. I do like to cook for people, too. Thanks.

      Delete
  10. Perhaps you can describe your mother’s spaghetti one of us who follow your blog might have a similar recipe.
    I have a recipe from a friends husband that is quite good.but I don’t believe it is what you are looking for. This couple moved to Italy about 10 yrs ago. The husband’s family had immigrated from Italy many years ago. This direct line is how they were able to move there. Because she is not Italian she can not become an Italian citizen. at least that was the case when they first moved there. In fact she is required to use her maiden name on any official documents.

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    Replies
    1. Janet,
      Who can describe spaghetti? If I can tell anyone the ingredients, I have remembered the recipe. I have remembered 15 of the ingredients, so maybe I am there. Well, almost. I do know I now have to remember to get whole bay leaves for the spaghetti. Oh, just now, I remembered one more ingredient. Plus, I must find a Kroger to get the right mushrooms. All this talking is helping me to remember.

      A woman from our church had relatives in Italy. Her late husband was Italian. Their property/money could only be removed just a bit of a time. Their rules are different.

      Delete
  11. for my grandmothers 90th birthday I made a cookbook with all the old family recipes (with old photos)- and over 100 of my family members ordered them! She loved it and we now have them preserved for generations

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    Replies
    1. obscure,
      That is a wonderful gift! I don't know of any family recipes to justify a cookbook...lol. Maybe a flyer with two recipes.

      Delete
  12. Good advice, this.
    Another back up plan: share the recipes with the relations. Whenever I can't find one I call the cousins/aunts etc. they usually have it as well. A few times I learned of corrections no doubt from errors of transcription.

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    Replies
    1. Urspo,
      That is a good plan. I would be horrified if an error had been handed on to someone else. I don't have girl cousins or aunts!

      Delete
  13. I rescued my mother in laws recipes that were her mom's - so my husbands grandma. Now all that are left in the family are my husband and his mom since his brother and sister passed away and his mom and dad were only children. She was going to toss them when she moved! What? Well they are mine now. I have a few recipes that were special from my mom in her hand writing and a few of my grandma's. I treasure them. Take care.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Crystal,
      Good for you! I suppose she thought she would not be cooking anymore. I am so happy you were there to rescue them.

      Delete
  14. My mother's recipe for lemon kuchen is lost, and I am pretty sad about that. I searched through her recipe cards and can't find it. She used to make them for church bake sales and they were always snapped up immediately. I have found recipes on the Internet that are close, I think--one day I will start trying them. But not to have the original recipe card in her handwriting is so sad...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sue,
      I am sad for your loss of her handwriting. It makes me sad. I can sort of remember little things from recipes that I hope will help me find mine. Maybe you remember something.

      Delete

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