Thursday, March 8, 2012

Cooking with the Relatives

I am now in possession of a fabulous cookbook. My aunt's niece made it a few years ago.  Anyone who knows my Aunt Joyce knows that lady can cook.  One of the first memories of food I have at her house was cinnamon toast.  I know, cinnamon toast is pretty mundane but really everything that came out of her kitchen (and my grandmother's kitchen up the street) tasted better than any food I've ever had.

Both my aunt and my grandmother seemed to cook without thought.  I remember going to see my grandmother in the nursing home a few years ago.  I had decided to stop and get some soft crabs on the way home and figured I could ask for her secret recipe.   Granny shrugged her shoulders and laughed when I asked about the best way to cook them.

"I dunno," she replied, "flour, pepper, push 'em around and fry 'em up.  That oughtta do it."

It did.  It wasn't the recipe I thought I'd hear, but it worked.

My aunt's way of cooking is also a non-exact science.  It seems when her niece was trying to get recipes out of her she'd give ingredients, a few cooking directives and end by saying, "you know, just cook it 'til it's done."

My mom has a few secrets as well.  She always had the best freshly brewed tea.  My high school friend, Phyllis, still asks about the salmon roll and oyster stuffing she would make each Thanksgiving and Christmas in hopes there are leftovers somewhere.  And just two weeks ago she made some real kick-ass crab cakes.


  1. I ate dinner just a little while ago, but your post is making me hungry.

  2. I have secret dreams of being a "Push it around 'til it's done" kinda cook... you just wrote about my secret dreamy role models. However, you won't find me far from a recipe in my kitchen! :) Enjoyed your post!