Apples, Cider and Bettys?

A quick drive thru rural areas of Canada’s Maritime provinces reveals countless abandoned homesteads. Some with remnants of buildings, houses, barns, etc. others are marked by trees, apple trees. Despite filling the spring air with their glorious blossoms these wild apples are mostly, small, sour, and unpalatable. You could be forgiven for thinking apples areContinue reading “Apples, Cider and Bettys?”

Fanny’s Frugal Food Hacks

Fat Fancy… the benefits and techniques of collecting and reusing bacon fat. It wasn’t that Fanny was mean or miserly she just couldn’t afford to be wasteful. For Fanny wasting food now, meant going hungry later. Fanny had the ‘know how’ to assure maximum benefit from food which entered her kitchen. She didn’t really haveContinue reading “Fanny’s Frugal Food Hacks”

Family, food and a feed of Smelts.

“Do you want a feed of Smelts?” is still commonly heard in many areas of Atlantic Canada and it is usually closely followed by the question “are they cleaned”? Mum did not enjoy cleaning fish and wild game. Knowing the cooking would fall to her, she was quick to quashed the idea that she wouldContinue reading “Family, food and a feed of Smelts.”

Comfort food, Leftovers and Bread Pudding

Just because a food is traditional to a community or group does not mean it was eaten by everyone in it. It is interesting how individual and varied food choices are, despite major underlying similarities…A few years ago, Ray and I were attending a conference out of province, a good friend offered to ‘stay in’Continue reading “Comfort food, Leftovers and Bread Pudding”

Holiday Favourites, Frying pan cookies and canned peas…

Recently, while browsing through some of the recipes in the My Mother’s Cookbooks collection I came across one of Mum’s handwritten holiday menus. A list of all of the special foods she planned to prepare, share and serve during the season. It contained all of the usual suspects, Squash Puff, Cornish Pasties, Whipped Shortbreads, Buttertarts,Continue reading “Holiday Favourites, Frying pan cookies and canned peas…”

Trains, Harvest and Depression Stew.

The first harvest of new potatoes, baby carrots, new onions, tender peas and beans…always makes me think of my Grandmother’s (and Mother’s) Depression Stew1. The railway is credited with helping develop this country. The settlement of western Canada did depend heavily on the railway, but the role of the railway in development of industry andContinue reading “Trains, Harvest and Depression Stew.”

If you can’t stand the heat…use the summer kitchen?

I grew up in five different houses… the first my Dad started after my parents married using his army severance pay. The house was modest and very much a house of it’s time, it remained a work in progress until Dad decided to enter ministry. Dad’s decision would take us to a series of largeContinue reading “If you can’t stand the heat…use the summer kitchen?”

Elsie’s ‘Washday’ Pudding

One of the recipes in the My Mother’s Cookbook collection is named “Elsie’s Washday Pudding”. That her sister Elsie had a favourite recipe for wash days while Mum did not, is entirely understandable. Until the Victorian period (1837-1901) the washing of clothing (and bodies) was infrequent and a luxury limited to those who could affordContinue reading “Elsie’s ‘Washday’ Pudding”