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Sunday Dinner at Grandma’s

When I was little it seemed as if we were always having Sunday dinner at one of my Grandmothers’ homes.

Sunday dinner at my Mother’s Hungarian parent’s house consisted of basically two courses:

First: homemade chicken soup with her homemade noodles swimming about, or in summer season green and wax bean soup with a toasted rantas (roux) broth and a dollop of sour cream, or maybe her Hungarian potato soup (served cold in the summer)
Next: either Hungarian Chicken Paprikash with white rice or mashed potatoes, or roast beef with roasted potatoes and carrots, or stuffed peppers or stuffed cabbage rolls with mashed potatoes. Ham AND capon on holidays.

At my Dad’s mother’s house one course:

Either: roast beef with mashed potatoes and gravy, or roasted stuffed pork chops, or roasted/baked stuffed chicken breasts, or a big pan of her fantastic tuna noodle casserole during Lent. In the cold months she would more so make a huge pot of potato soup (her style different than my Mom’s mother’s, and always served hot), or beef stew. Turkey or ham on holidays.

Both Grandmas served dessert:

Mom’s mom: apple “cake” (which was really a sheet version of apple pie with a slightly different crust and a lattice top with a layer of meringue sprinkled with lemon rind/crushed walnuts. Or her famous Hungarian-style jam liner cookies. Dobos Torte (if we were very, VERY lucky).

Dad’s mom: pies (apple, peach, strawberry rhubarb, blackberry – whatever was in season and with a vanilla ice cream scoop on top), zucchini bread, her own recipe of nutmeg sugar cookies, strawberry shortcake.

Loved having dinner at my Grandmothers’, and they always served it on their good china a top a crisp linen table cloth and napkins. the individual Grandma kitchen aromas are forever engraved in my psyche. My mom was too much of a distracted and impatient cook, and some of her dishes just didn’t click. I learned to cook from my Grandmas. I learned how NOT to cook from my Mom. To this day my Mother likes my cooking better than her own.


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