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Stories From the Recipe Box is a project I have started this month in the hopes to preserve and share your recipes and stories with the community of Washington. Simply send us a copy of a favorite recipe, scanned from the original handwritten recipe card or typed up by you. Then include a story that goes along with that recipe.
You can write a paragraph or a page. These recipes and stories will be shared with the community in upcoming months by Facebook, our Events email, the newspaper, and a printed booklet and participants will receive a copy of this booklet. Email copies to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail to the Washington Public Library at 115 W. Washington St., Washington, Iowa, 52353 by March 31. So far, we have received some very interesting stories and yummy recipes. Here is one from Julie Gentz to get you inspired to share some of your own:
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My mom loved to cook and bake! When she was in her 80s, she decided to put together a cookbook, full of her favorite recipes, a real 'taste of home” if you will, for all of her children. She would hand write each recipe and my dad would dutifully take them to the copy story for the finished product. It is one of my most precious possessions and it has been my go-to source for comfort from home.
After my mom passed away six years ago, I picked up the torch and started making copies of the book for all of the grandchildren that she was unable to get to before she died. Each time I open the book, it's like going home one more time.
As an adult, one of the things I looked forward to most was going to my parents' house for Sunday dinner. Suddenly I was a kid again, and that was all right with me. Mom would plan her Sunday meal days in advance and would always call and share her menu with me (not that she needed my approval!) To my mom food was love. One of her favorite Sunday 'after church meals” was a beef roast. It always made me smile to hear her talk about 'throwing a roast in the oven for dinner.” To this day, I still get that warm, fuzzy feeling each time I announce that I am going to do the same!
Among her many culinary skills our family benefited from was Mom's awesome beef and homemade noodles. She had it down to a science. As a child, I can remember helping her separate the noodles and helping to lay them on a cutting board to firm up a bit. When they were ready, she would gingerly drop them in the boiling beef broth and the smell would be phenomenal.
She taught as many of her children and grandchildren as she could how to make these noodles. One day when my children were small, mom and dad were visiting, and I asked her to write down her recipe for noodles. Evidently, we had a hard time finding a piece of paper, because she wrote it on the back of a small piece of paper that was a 'to-do” list. I still have that list with the noodle recipe on the back and it brings back fond memories each time I see it.
I made a photocopy of it so I would always have it, even if the original eventually fell apart. And, while it is a little different from the official one she included in the Family Favorites cookbook, it still is just as good and holds a lot of warm memories for me.
4 eggs well-beaten
6 tablespoons shortening
1/4 teaspoon salt
Add enough flour to make a stiff dough. Stir flour in with a fork. Divide in half and roll each half on a floured board. Cut with noodle cutter as thin as possible. Drop into boiling broth. Cook about 15 minutes.