17 August 2009

Dinner's Cooking...

Phillips Family Christmas Dinner December 1961

I can hear you asking, "Now what does that have to do with genealogy?" Well actually if your family is like mine ALOT!

Both of my grandmothers were really good cooks. You know, the kind that never brings food home from the church potluck - everyone wants her recipes? My maternal grandmother did the Pennsylvania Dutch thing - noodles, mashed potatoes, yummy desserts, meatloaf and much more. I loved getting invited to eat at grandma Phillips house, even the left overs there were worth waiting for.

My paternal grandmother, known as "grannie" to both her grandkids & great grandkids, grannie was from south Georgia. Her cooking was about as southern as you could get, fried fish, hushpuppies, cornbread, greenbeans with onions & bacon, banana pudding that melted in your mouth...

Sure both of them made things that us kids wanted no part of. Things like collard & mustard greens, okra, stewed tomatoes -- just stuff kids like me could not even think of partaking in.

So here I am, 40+ years later and what is on my table? Those recipes that have been handed down from generation to generation. Yes, the generation thing is part of genealogy - but so is protecting those recipes.

I can see you with that puzzled look on the other side of this screen. No, I am not crazy - I've been putting my grandmother's (both of them) recipes in my genealogy software. I created a fact called "Recipe" and in the notes for "recipe" I type in the recipes. I state the history of the recipe and any stories I may have heard or remember about it. After all, eating those wonderful dishes sure brings back lots of fond memories - memories of people who are no longer here to share the dishes or the memories. But those dishes keep the memories alive.

So tonight as we all sit around the dinner table and eat the meal that is being shared, we'll remember the family memories that come with the recipes. And I'll smile knowing those precious recipes are safely tucked away here in my genealogy software.

How about you? How do you preserve your family recipes?


Karen Packard Rhodes said...

I have some old recipes and some old cookbooks. However, I have also lost some recipes by depending too much on the computer and by not, with that, keeping up with the task of migrating to the latest storage media. Paper still rules!

But that's a great idea of creating the fact "recipe" and the notes for it. I think I'm going to swipe that concept, if you don't mind!

Wonderful post!

Karen said...

WIth proper backups done on a regular basis your recipes should be safe as Ft Knox in your genealogy software. Just back it and keep your backups in several different places so that no matter what you've always got a spare somewhere..
Thanks for reading & commenting. Please feel free to use the suggestion. I also use a fact called "Personal belongings" for things such as old books, dishes etc., which I combine with a photo & description so my kids where know where all this cool stuff came from.
Happy Researching!