Thursday, October 9, 2008

I Never Thought This Day Would Come

My mother's mother (aka MaMa) was amazingly talented in the kitchen. A child of the Depression, she knew how to take the cheap parts and the leftover pieces and turn them onto something magical. Even though I was never (and still am not) a fan, when she used to fry up chicken livers before a family dinner, everyone would just stand there with a fork and eat them right out of the pan (she used to get them for like 8 cents a pound). She used to buy skirt steak and flank steak when it was the cuts the butcher would try to sell off cheap, before mainstream eaters realized these are two of the tastiest parts of the cow. She ran a kitchen in a bar when my mother was growing up, and eventually became the head of catering for Weil, Gotshal and Manges, which is one of the largest law firms in the United States. Even though at that point she was outsourcing to NYC caterers, she still did some things on site (in a kitchen that had more square footage than my house) and still kept her touch, even after her retirement.

Some of my fondest memories growing up were helping MaMa in the kitchen. I learned at an early age that those who did the cooking did not do the cleaning, and I also yearned for an escape from the cousins and my sister and whomever, so I'd go and ask what I could do to help. I started with washing food, peeling vegetables and stirring pots. As my skills improved, I graduated to measuring ingredients from the spice jars, chopping up veggies, and eventually was allowed to man the stove (usually cooking chicken livers with hungry adults hovering over me - BLECH).

Why am I getting all nostalgic about my grandmother? One of the greatest things she made was rice pudding, and I've never had any rice pudding that compares. The only record of her rice pudding recipe is in a folder at my mother's house, which consists of my grandmother's handwritten ingredient list. Just ingredients, no method. Talk about old-school. She taught my mother how to make it, and I used to beg my mother to teach me how, and I'd always get a vague explanation that was spit out in about 2 seconds. Come on!

Why is this the day I never thought would come? Last night my mother typed up and printed me out the method on how to make MaMa's rice pudding. Oh man. One of the greatest desserts ever, and now I have the recipe. Life today is good. The deliciousness, the creaminess, the sweetness of the greatest rice pudding on the planet! All mine!

Needless to say, don't expect to see THIS recipe posted anytime soon :-D

4 comments:

AG said...

ugh, i just threw up in my mouth little...

(more like snot from a sinus infected face) but seriously so much talk about chicken livers actually makes me smell it again with onions.....

ericcthompson68 said...

Good 'ol fried chicken livers,boy I loves me some licken chivers! Fry them up and sit in front of the TV with some ranch dressing to dip 'em in. Shoeeee! better than popcorn!

Leslee said...

So did the rice pudding turn out perfectly on your first try?

nekonoai said...

Share. T.T