About Me

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I am a retired English teacher and department head, the mother of three, grand mother of three, and have been married to the same man for 42 years. I subscribe to Dr. PM Forni's concept of Civility. I was born in South Philadelphia and grew up in the 'burbs. I love soft pretzels and cheesesteaks, the Phillies, the Eagles, and San Diego. I love being Mom, Aunt Kathy, Nona Kathy, and Teacher. I spend a lot of time in my gardens in the spring and summer, and in the winter I plan what I'm going to plant. I also am an avid reader and photographer.

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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

A Confession and a Walk Down Memory Lane

I have a confession to make...I love boxes. Not big ones, although when we took delivery of things like a washer or dryer, or when we moved, I'd take the huge boxes and make a clubhouse or a train for the kids. I'm talking about boxes like these:




The ones you get with jewelry or from Harry and David's Towers of Treats. I don't know why I savor the boxes -- maybe my brain automatically interprets what the goodies found within are -- the chocolate covered cherries, jumbo cashews, moose crunch (a sinful confection if there ever was one), dangly silver earrings, tiny kitchen gadgets, small candles, et cetera. And so I've saved these boxes. They filled up my closet and drawers (hee hee, that sounds funny -- but you know what I mean!) Maybe I really subscribe to that old adage, "Good things come in small packages." At any rate, after noticing I'd accumulated an awful lot of these, I've decided to put them in with the recycling. It's time. Don't know what that means either, but I'm not dwelling on it.

Went out this morning (it's not a gym day) to Trader Joe's and to get gas at Costco ($1.71 for premium!! YAHOO!!). It was 'snaining' -- yesterday's 64 degree temps gave way to this. I didn't run home, however, but stuck it out: filled up my tank, went into TJ's and got a large brie for Cheryl's party. I'll top the brie with dried cranberries and pecans mixed with brown sugar and butter -- these atop very thinly sliced pears. I'll then wrap the whole thing in puff pastry and bake it. I've made this many times with several variations: sliced apples, walnuts, raisins soaked in rum. It's usually pretty good. I used to cook for all our family reunions, graduation parties, block parties...I really love doing this. I'd start three days before and cook all of my favorites: shrimp dip, meatballs in bourbon, lasagna, gnocchi with sausage, thinly sliced ham on pumpkin muffins, stromboli, spanokopita. Over the years I've made hundreds of miniature eggrolls, chicken satays, dips of all kinds and tall, tall chocolate cakes topped with ganache and truffles, chocolate trifles, cheesecake, Italian cookies, and hamen tashen. A couple of years ago I put all of the recipes I made when the kids were little onto a disk and printed out and collated cookbooks for each of them. Two of them use it frequently, the middle child just likes having it around. I have no idea what began this culinary walk down memory lane, but I think I'll go downstairs and start dinner even though it's only 12:00...

9 comments:

happyone said...

Yum, I can't wait to give that a try on Saturday at Cheryl's party.
I'm making lasagna for supper tonight!
After cleaning out the attic my big blue recycling can is packed to the tippy top!!

Kathy said...

I just made gnocchi and we'll be having it with sausage and broccoli. See--that big thing can be filled!!

Deblynne said...

I love boxes too and small tins. I've just started collecting family recipes to put in a book for my children and brother's family. I found a website called Tastebook. You can type in recipes and pics and then purchase a printed copy The cookbooks are very nice. Rachel Rappaport, a food blogger who I read published her book through them and it is very nice. Her blog is Coconut & Lime http://coconutlime.blogspot.com/

Deblynne said...

Oops The link to the Tastebook site is: http://www.tastebook.com/

Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

Oh my gosh, you're killing me with the food descriptions!

bonnie said...

You think I could get one of those cookbooks? I like the idea of making a cookbook. My daughter would never use it, but I think it might make a nice gift for friends that do cook, especially if we combined our favorite recipes. How about a chain letter recipe club? You've got me thinking now. Do you have a recipe for almond macaroons? Like the kind they sell at Vicarros....

Kathy said...

Vaccaro's are the absolute best. I make almond macaroons, but use the recipe on the inside of the label on the can of almond paste. I think Vaccaro's uses flour in theirs, but I'm not sure.

Gin said...

OMG, I don't think I'm suppose to be this hungry in the morning. Not a good pre-cursor for the day!!!

I love boxes too. I love little boxes and every time I go to Hobby Lobby and they have those decorative hat and/or shoe boxes on sale, I'm buying them...even tho I'm trying to keep the house hoed out and not accumulate tons of stuff! I have no idea what it is and hadn't given it much thought until your post. I guess I just love boxes!

I should do that with Mom's old (very old) recipe box. Your kids are very lucky to have that cookbook!!

Kell said...

I love the idea of pears on top of the brie and cranberry/brown sugar topping. I gotta try that! I wish we had a Trader Joe's, but we do have a Whole Foods.