Everybody’s doing it…well, not everybody but a lot of folks in Mississippi are doing it. They are teaming up with somebody to write a book. Today I’ve decided to team up with other writers for this meandering.
Let’s be honest, our minds embrace what we are passionate about and what we live for. In Mississippi we are passionate about eating. I am positive some of you are like me, no matter where you live. When it comes to food preparation, you want to simplify the process.
Starting from scratch is not on our agenda. With this in mind, I have invited some five year olds to team up with me and share their simple recipes with you. Here are four of my favorites:
Con Pie: Get some cons. Put the cons on a piecrust. Put it in the stove. Cook the pie for three minutes. Take it out, put it on a plate and eat it until it is all gone.
Cheese Cake: Buy a box with cheesecake mix on it. Mix it up. Pour it in the piecrust. Put it in the oven. Hide the box.
Pizza: Call Pizza Hut. Send Daddy to the store. (That has got to be my favorite recipe.)
French Fries: Cut up the potatoes. Put the potatoes in a skillet. Cook for six hours. Eat with ketchup. Be careful. They are so hot.
I also invited my Creative Writing Class to share some of their comfort food experiences from their growing up days. My hope is these stories will revive some of your long ago family memories.
Vivian Coats: Crispy fat and crunchy lean. Cracklings hot from a huge black wash pot. Daddy butchered hogs on the first cold days in late fall. These delicious morsels were mostly used to make crackling cornbread, but they were just as good by themselves. There must have been 100 grams of fat in a small handful. Who was counting? Not me.
Debbie Little: Growing up Italian has its advantages. Sunday mornings were filled with the aroma of simmering spaghetti sauce prepared by my mother. Every week we were delighted with lasagna, manicotti, ravioli and the like. Frequently I attempt to duplicate my mother’s wonderful recipes, but it’s not the same. Just maybe I don’t have as much Italian in me as my Mother did.
Russlyn Carter: The making of gumbo was a big production for my mother: peeling, chopping, stirring to the right consistency and color. The smell reminded us company was coming and added to the excitement. What great gumbo memories are triggered for me by these long ago thoughts of my big, noisy family.
Roblyn R. Schwartz: My grandmother, Bessie Hill, know how to cook. Nana could mix ordinary ingredients and produce mouth- watering results. Perched on my red metal folding stool, I watched as she created my favorite dessert, banana pudding. With the spoon clinking against the double boiler, Nana stirred sugar, flour, milk and eggs to send my taste buds watering. Next the Pyrex dish was lined with vanilla wafers and layered with ripe bananas and the warm creamy pudding. The best part was licking the spoon and cleaning out the large double boiler.
Tommy Mangum: My memory takes me back to childhood when cotton was cultivated by mule. It was a time when the Sunday chicken for dinner was a rooster walking around the chicken yard on Saturday morning. It was time when having bacon or ham on the breakfast table meant dressing the sacrificial pig. This ritual took place every November when the weather turned cold. These memories are etched in my mind as clearly as a painted mural on a giant plastered wall.
Do you know the greatest recipe book ever written was the bible? This is because nothing in human experience is ever left out of the bible. All the ingredients are there. If you are a Christian, you too must team up with someone; that someone is the Holy Spirit living in you. Just this morning, I found a perfect recipe for our hectic days: “My presence shall go with you, and I will give you rest.” Exodus 33:14
My hope is you will have a restful time teaming up with His presence. “Bon Appetite”