Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Its My Birthday!

Hello again. It was nice to hear all your responses to the last post. I thank you all for the feedback. It was especially nice to hear from Annette, a colleague from my days in the museum biz.

Last week I turned the big Four-Oh. Strangely, there was no crisis attached since I used up all my crises a couple of years ago with a divorce. But I did get presents. Oh boy did I get presents! A Japanese garden pagoda, gold-toe socks, and of course wonderful hours spent with my kids. All this bores you, I know.

I also got... TWO COOK BOOKS!!! The first one was the Don Holm classic treatise on Dutch oven cooking, with notes about sourdough. I made a peach cobbler for breakfast this morning (with ice cream on the side). I also got a tasty little compilation from my sister. Regular readers here might know that I absconded with my grandmother's recipe files when she retired to the assisted living home. My sister Tawna absconded with my other grandma's cooking files when alzheimer's overpowered her. Tawna is a very motivated and energetic person. She edited the collection and self-published it on Lulu.com Its called, "Recipes from the Kitchen of Metta Hale Stauffer." Yup, the daughter-in-law from Henry Alfred Stauffer of the previous posting.

Metta (she's 92 now) is a second generation Danish American. Her mother Mary Ann Amanda Peterson came to Utah as a little girl, and they were both raised in Cache Valley and also a stint in Blackfoot, ID. In the recipe book we find a few recipes reaching back to Metta Hansen Peterson, my great-great-grandmother. One such is this unremarkable recipe for "Meat Dumplings."

1/2 lb ground meat
2 eggs
Small onion, chopped
1/2 c breat crumbs
Salt, pepper
If it needs moisture add sego milk. WOrk into small balls. Roll in flour and drop in soup.

Basically, this is Frickadeller. This Danish version of a hamburger, meatloaf or dumpling can take several forms, and might be served on a bun, stand alone, or in soup. In the course of my research I came across a very similar recipe attributed to Caroline Berg Ostermann, circa 1850. Caroline studied cuisine in Denmark before immigrating to Utah in 1868. Her frickadeller recipe came down through five generations, and is now archived in the Utah State Historical Society archives at the Rio Grande station in Salt Lake City.

Aren't I a lucky boy to receive such birthday presents?


Jen said...

a lucky boy, indeed.

glad you had a good birthday. it was sure fun seeing you! seeing you and Shannon is one of my favorite things to do when we come to town.

Scarehaircare said...

Happy Birthday to you! If I were your neighbor, my family would pop over to sing you Happy Birthday and present you with a Fresh Orange Italian Cream Cake.

Peach Cobbler with ice cream for breakfast? :)

Tawna said...

Brock, I wish you would let me do Grandma Cheney's recipe box, too. We could go through them together sometime. Happy Birthday!