Recipe for Love

I’m so glad that God made us in such a way that certain sights, smells and tastes can trigger sweet memories.  When I walk into a kitchen that smells like coffee, bacon and eggs I’m immediately transported back to my Mamaw’s kitchen. She believed everyone should have a good breakfast, and no one got away in the morning without one at her house. Her homemade pear preserves and plum jelly were always on the table and I’ve never tasted any quite as good since those days.  When I cook a roast in the oven, I’m reminded of my Mom’s Sunday dinners. The roast cooked while we were at church and when we came home the wonderful aroma that met us at the door made our mouths water.

Even more precious to me, though are the recipes left by these two wonderful women.  I inherited both of their recipe boxes and I love to sit and look through those index cards. The ink is faded and the cards are yellowed with age, but the handwriting on them is still clear and brings them close once again. I can picture them sitting at the kitchen or dining room table copying recipes onto those cards. My mother loved to use colored ink and a fountain pen, so her cards are mostly written in purple, peacock-blue and red. My Mamaw preferred a blue ball point pen or a pencil.  Often, there are notes written after a new recipe was tried making changes and recommendations. Occasionally I find a recipe card written by one of my aunts, or a friend of my mom’s. There are even a few written by my dad!  He loved to cook and there are a number of cards with his speciality dishes written in his bold flamboyant script-always in black ink. Seeing the cards and their familiar writing makes me feel that a part of these loved ones is still with me, even though they have been gone for many years.

Things have changed since the days of handwritten index cards and recipe boxes; my daughter and I keep our recipes on our laptops and email them back and forth.  Still, I plan to hand down those precious recipe boxes to her. I know she will treasure them too.


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