Wednesday, March 7

Preserving Our Culinary Heritage, Mr.P's Meatloaf, Roasted Green Beans and Homemade Mashed Potatoes!

Family recipes are often some of our favorite foods.  We've made them so many times that we don't even need a recipe to follow. Do you have recipes from your mother, mother-in-law, aunts, grandmothers? Are your family recipes filed in a recipe box, stuck between the pages of a cookbook, shoved in a kitchen drawer or like me...in a huge accordion file folder? Do you have written copies of family recipes to pass on to your children and grandchildren? I have to say that I LOVE written recipes the best! I enjoy baking a cake from a recipe that my grandmother wrote out by hand. I somehow feel more connected to her, almost as if she were in the kitchen instructing me on how to make 7 minute icing.

My niece and her little family live in San Diego, her husband is in the Navy. During the holidays we enjoy putting her on  speaker phone while we are in the kitchen cooking. It helps us keep that bond across the miles. In the early years of her marriage we would talk her through some of the family favorites but now she knows exactly what she's doing and she is doing it quite well.
L-R..Steph, my sister; Gloria aka MeMe and or mother, and then me..Ronda.
Hand-written recipes are a special gift from past generations and a part of our family history. If we don't preserve them for the next generation these wonderful pieces of history end with us. Depending on how much time and effort you are willing to spend dictates your method of preservation. You could have them all printed up into a spiral cookbook. You have seen these, every little church has one. You could use pictures of your grandmother or mother at the stove along with their recipes. I might do this someday, but for now I am just scanning recipes. Mr.P has been after me for YEARS to type them up on the computer. I think the need to preserve my  family's recipes is one of the reasons I started blogging. Most of the time I give a little background information or story along with certain recipes. I am SO thankful that the next generation in our family enjoys cooking. They are eager to learn. If nothing else, buy plastic sheet covers and a large 3 ring binder from Office Depot and organize your recipes. You will be glad you did, and your children will one day appreciate your efforts.

Most of my old recipes have been ripped out of magazines. This  is a scan of a meatloaf recipe I tore out of a magazine back in 1994. It is a staple here at Porter South. Nothing fancy and really easy to make. Who knows someday this may be a recipe Elizabeth cooks for her family!

If you have a meatloaf pan use it. It will keep your meatloaf from sitting in fat. If you don't have a meatloaf pan you can buy an aluminum loaf pan and poke holes in the bottom, then sit this down inside your loaf pan. When I take the meatloaf out of the oven to add the glaze I drain off as much fat as I can. It helps the meatloaf brown on the sides. This is something I do but most definitely not a requirement.

These roasted green beans are heavenly. I like my green beans a little crunchy, like at the Chinese buffet! They pair well with this meatloaf. Round out your meal by boiling  russet potatoes, peeled and chopped, in salted water, drain and mash adding butter and cream, half and half or whole milk. Homemade mashed potatoes. YUM! I think I'm in love!!


ROASTED GREEN BEANS

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 pound fresh whole green beans
  • 6 cloves of garlic
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon chopped tarragon
  • 1 teaspoon whole grain mustard

WHAT TO DO

  • Toss 1 pound green beans on a baking sheet with 6 smashed garlic cloves, 1/4 cup water and 1 tablespoon olive oil. Roast at 450 degrees F until the beans are tender and slightly charred, about 20 minutes. 
  • Toss with a teaspoons of each: chopped tarragon and whole-grain mustard, and salt and pepper to taste. Remove the garlic unless you like to eat them whole.



  MASHED POTATOES

INGREDIENTS
  • 2 - 2 1/2 pounds Russet Potatoes
  • 3/4 cups Butter
  • 1/2 cup to 3/4 cups Half-and-Half

WHAT TO DO
  • Peel and cut the potatoes into chunks. Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add salt and the potatoes. Cook for 15 to 20 minutes or until a fork easily slides into the potatoes with no resistance, and the potatoes should almost fall apart.
  • Drain the potatoes and add the butter. Mash, mash, mash! Slowly add the half and half, stir and taste for seasoning. You can add more salt and pepper if you like.
  • Stir well and place in a medium-sized baking dish. Throw a few pats of butter over the top of the potatoes and place them in a 350-degree oven and heat until butter is melted and potatoes are warmed through.


ENJOY!!
~THE DOMESTIC CURATOR!
RONDA


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