Tuesday, October 14, 2008


Fall in my family always bestows upon us many blessings in the way of memories. For years we have had the tradition of different meal items on Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years. I have become the master chef when it comes to our family specialty Abelskievers. Not that I know how to make the batter, but I'm sure I could figure that part out, I am just obsessive enough to be really good at keeping them from burning as they cook and getting them to be the perfect golden brown and completely cooked in the middle. My family has not been a filling in the middle type family, instead we have an assortment of Jams and Syrups and powdered sugar that go atop these decadent and delightful breakfast treats. When I moved away to Texas I got the parting gift of my own Abelskiever pan so that in times of loneliness and those holidays when we could not travel home, because inevitably there would be some, I could bring a little bit of comfort by knowing that I was cooking and enjoying the same things as my family. I love that I get to pass on the tradition to my family and seeing as Little is already eating pancakes (please don't judge ;) ) he gets to enjoy them for the first time in just over a month.

Photo Courtesy of Williams & Sonoma (Awesome Recipe Here)

It always brings back a flood of memories when we cook our traditional holiday food. We make mom's pumpkin pie, banana cream pie, coconut cream pie, apple pie, berry pie (can you tell we like pie?) and Abelskievers along with mom's famous rolls which my husband likes made as "gobblers" with turkey, stuffing and cranberry sauce on them. Holidays would not be the same without the smells that accompany our preparations and it has been a joy as our family has grown to see what new things have been added to the family arsenal. We now enjoy things like carrot casserole, chicken and rice, yams with marshmallows (grandma's specialty), cranberry slush, corn bread stuffing, pecan pie and more.

My favorite memory of the holiday cooking season was years ago. My older sister Mindy and I were put in charge of making mom's stuffing. This would have been a fine idea had we not been the people in the house who happen to both have an intense love of spicy things. Not just lots of spices but spicy HOT spicy, where your eyes are watering, nose is running, mouth is burning off spicy. We took to our task of making the stuffing and had all 3 pans set and ready to be spiced. I flavored them and asked Mindy to test, she felt they needed a little more spice, so she added more. She asked me to test and I too felt they needed just a tad more spice so I added more and so it went until we were satisfied with the taste of our first attempt at mom's stuffing. We covered our dishes and baked them in preparation for Thanksgiving. Dad was the Official Tast Tester, and as the OTT he breezed past the open oven and lovingly dipped his gleaming silver OTT spoon in to test the goods that we had produced. He thought they tasted great and breezed on past to take care of one of the kids. About 45 seconds later he bolted back in the room and leapt toward the glass cupboard. His face was flushed and he was motioning desperately for a drink of water. A few moments later when he had finally put out the fire blazing in his digestive tract, he said "that sure does sneak up on you!" In the end we had to make yet another pan of stuffing and Mom was in charge of spicing it so it was safe for public consumption, and now every year when we are asked to help neither one of us are allowed near the pepper!

As we near the holiday season I hope we can all recall the memories that are attached to our favorite smells and tastes. They abound at my house now as a Lifetime Weight Watchers member I will strive this holiday season not to eat my memories or my feelings! :) I've succeeded at this many years in the past and I intend to keep it that way, I'll just the flood of memories immerse my soul in the feeling of goodness!

Baby Mama

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