Gramma’s Recipes

My mother-in-law has never been fond of cooking. Nobody starved as she raised four healthy sons, and one of her resources remains the frozen food aisle along with that old stand-by, deli sandwiches. She hails from a multi-generational line of semi-cooks. Her mother, still the life of the party at 95, can entertain like few others – pampering loved ones with platters that overflow, and offering to-go plates of leftovers for everyone. But here’s the little family secret: Many of Gramma’s recipes all sound alike:

Get in the car and drive to the deli. Thank catering department for lovely platters.  

When the time arrives to provide a feast, Publix often comes to the rescue. 

But despite family tradition, my mother-in-law knows the gift of sharing cooking inspiration, and among my collection of cookbooks, I maintain several recipe collections that she has given me as gifts. She knows I love these resources.

If you discover one or two recipes that work for you, cookbooks earn their keep. If the numbers rise to three or four, you’re approaching a nice return. There’s a time and place for Gramma’s recipes, but I’ll continue to challenge those cookbooks to maintain their keep on the kitchen counter.




Chowder for the Wolf at the Door

When 10 pounds of potatoes and a couple dozen ears of corn show up unannounced, welcome them home to the chowder pot. After transforming our

Apple Soup Sendoff

Farewells bring on mingled emotions. Some signal “goodbyes” and others “so longs,” with hopes to stay connected even over long distances. When the time came

Peppered Corn Meal

Preparing the perfect polenta sounds easy enough, but around my kitchen, it takes added patience to work with the grainy flour ground from white or