The Treasure of Heritage Recipes

Now What Could This Be?

Now What Could This Be?

I had just finished  scanning some old pictures and was closing up the tub that they were stored in when the Commander came upstairs and plopped this down on my table.

“You might be interested in this,” he said.  “I found it in a box downstairs.”

Looks Promising!

Looks Promising!

I left it on my worktable for awhile because, frankly, I was tired of scanning and ready to work on something else.  However, that bubble-wrapped book kept drawing my attention to it.  It intrigued me.  I finally couldn’t stand the suspense any longer so I went over and unwrapped it and discovered this daybook in pretty bad shape.  It was obviously coming apart.  What was in it?

The Government Should Take Note

The Government Should Take Note

It turned out to be a “multi-use” daybook that had been used by both my grandmother and my grandfather.  Grandpa had used it as a ledger to keep track of his expenses on the farm and his income.  I was pleased to note that in the early 1900’s, his income was more than his expenses.  Now THAT’S the way to run a farm.  Too bad our government isn’t as wise (or as frugal).

Recipes and Memorabilia

Recipes and Memorabilia

Grandma had used a major portion of the daybook to write down family recipes in it.  She also was a “clipper” and had left me little “treasures” like can labels and bits of calendars.

Clues to a Time Period

Clues to a Time Period

Now these little clippings can be great clues, if your family diarist hasn’t dated the pages.  In this case, I know the daybook was being kept as early as 1924 and the 1930’s.  Of course, I also have Grandpa’s entries that are dated as early as 1912.

Need Some Fashion Ideas?

Need Some Fashion Ideas?

Now why Grandma would clip out this picture, I have no idea.  She was a no-nonsense Dutch farm woman.  I never saw her wear a get-up like this ever.  But something about this outfit must have spoken to a whimsical side of her that I never saw.  It’s fun for me because it gives me a clue into part of Grandma’s personality that I didn’t get the chance to see AND because I also love studying historical fashion.

The biggest treasure, though, is the fact that this daybook is full of old recipes like my great-aunt Caroline’s pumpkin pie recipe and other recipes from relatives that I heard about but never met because they had passed away before I was born.  These are recipes that would probably have been lost to our family if it hadn’t been for someone taking the time to write them down and then for the lucky break of having that notebook wrapped up and tucked away securely for years.

Now I have the privilege of scanning them so that we not only have the recipe but also the handwriting of my grandmother and her comments about the recipe.  I plan to digitally scrapbook them into a family heritage recipe book that I’ll have printed up for both of my children and for myself.  Over the coming years, I look forward to trying some of these old recipes and as I work in my kitchen, to feel the connection through flour, butter, and sugar with these women from my past.

You might not have a book of old family recipes but I’ll bet you have family recipes that you’ve made over and over as your children were growing up.  These are treasures that need to be preserved.  Take the time to write them down and then either give them to your grown children or, if you are crafty, put them in a scrapbook or special recipe book to give to them.  I made up a recipe book like this for my children when they married and included old family stories associated with times we made those recipes or with family members who had originally given me the recipes.  Hopefully it will be something that they will treasure for years to come.

Start now to preserve your OWN rich (and tasty) heritage.

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • karyn

    What a find! Better than a chest of gold.

    I scrapbooked ‘family recipies’ for my girls’ Christmas one year – I keep saying I’m going to add to it, using some of the girls’ ‘famous’ recipies as well, but……..

    Have fun with your treasure!

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox

Join other followers: