Friday, June 29, 2007

Family heritage dinner

My mom had the coolest idea while my sister and I were both visiting her and my dad with our families last week: a dinner focusing on our heritage. She asked a few relatives to send family recipes and memorabilia, and the meal was centered around these items.

Here's the crew ready to dine--sorry the photo's so dark. From left: husband Eric, Mom, son Nathan, niece Emily, Dad, brother-in-law David, and sister Monica. Missing in action: I took the picture, and my niece Rachel was scooting around on the floor.

For our place settings, we used silverware and Haviland china that belonged to the family of my father's grandfather. So elegant!

We grilled meat for supper, accompanied by Golden Glow Salad (Granny's recipe), chips with my maternal grandma's special dip, and my mom's doctored-up baked beans. Yum!

Dessert consisted of apple crisp (there's an apple orchard in our family's history), homemade ice cream (our own summer tradition) and "Pride of Iowa" cookies, shown above. This recipe, reprinted exactly, comes from my paternal great-grandmother. I was especially excited to try these treats since I now live in the Hawkeye state.

Pride of Iowa cooky

1 c. white sugar

1 c. brown sugar

1 c. margarine

2 eggs

2 c. flour

3 c. uncooked oatmeal (quick oats)

1 tsp. salt

1 tsp. baking powder

1 tsp. vanilla or almond flavoring

1 c. nuts or raisins

Mix sugars and margarine; add eggs. Mix well and add remaining ingredients. Bake in 325 degree oven for 15-20 minutes.

My mom made photocopies of the various family recipes she received and gave them to my sister and me. After the kids were in bed, we sat outside and looked through photos, letters and newsclippings from past generations. We enjoyed learning the stories of relatives, some we know, and some we never got to meet--tales of war, business and romance preserved on photographs and bits of paper.

I asked to keep one clipping, which I'd like to frame--I was fascinated by the idea of an egg farm:

It was a memorable evening, and I appreciate all the thought and effort that went into it. Thanks, Mom!


Anonymous said...

Dear Carrie,

What a great "report" of our family night together. :) There was more family history than could be shared in such a short time, but it sure was good to have the opportunity to be together and look back at our family's ancestors.

Love you!

Anonymous said...

The heritage meal is a great idea. Thanks for sharing the "Pride of Iowa" recipe. I wonder if it won at the State Fair or something?


Jill@Who Could Ask for Anything More said...

What a great idea. And, as a native Iowan, I will definitely try out that cookie recipe.

Leah in Iowa said...

So funny that in the olden days, they called it a "cooky". =) It just looks funny, spelled that way! They sure looked good!

Amy said...

I love the family china and the cookies look delicious! Great job! I am sure you all will have many wonderful memories from that evening.

Sonya said...

I love the idea of the heritage dinner. The china y'all used is beautiful! This gives me a great idea for our family! I think a heritage dinner is in order soon!

Shannon said...

My parents live in Iowa! The only chocolate chip cookie she makes is "Pride of Iowa". I didn't realize anyone else knew about it. I believe her mother made them.

bstarmerry said...

You're a remarkable woman Carrie. As a fellow Iowan, we are lucky to have you as a transplant.

Thank you for the recipe! It is one of our favorites and I coulndn't find mine anywhere. Probably stuck in a cookbook somewhere.

I enjoyed seeing your family and reading about your heritage night. It is a great way to keep the stories going and keep people talking. Your baby is precious too.