Today in My History
Books Read in 2021
Books Read in 2021
Cast (updated 7/16)
1 November 2021
Apparently this is National Calzone day.
Calzones were invented in Naples, Italy — supposedly as a way to serve people a pizza they could walk around with.
Calzone was one of the things my father made.
He didn't cook a lot, but when he did cook, he usually made something unforgettable and delicious. His calzone was so good I tried for years to find a product or a recipe as good as his, and never did.
He usually only made something once and, having made it, didn't feel the need to make it again.
His best recipe, though, was potato salad. He was famous for his potato salad, and I have yet to find a potato salad as good as his. I don't try to make it because one of the things that makes it wonderful is how much onion there is in it, and Walt doesn't like onion.
My father felt that one of the things that was most important in making potato salad was to slice the potatoes very thin. Then you mixed it with Best Food (Hellman's) mayonnaise, sweet pickles, onions, hard boiled egg and parsley. I was his taster, to let him know if he had enough salt in it. Sounds like a simple recipe to recreate, but even the times I've tried, it doesn't come out right.
Whenever we went anywhere that required us to bring food, my father almost always made potato salad. How I miss it!
I've also never had an egg nog as rich and delicious as his.
Not all of his experiments were successful. We teased him forever about the "peanut butter cookies" that he tried to make which were so thin you had to drink them.
My mother was mostly a "steak and potatoes" cook. Most dinners consisted of a protein, a starch and a vegetable. We had potatoes more than rice or noodles. The meat varied - roast beef, roast lamb, chicken, pork chops. She made the best meat loaf. Like my father's potato salad, I have tried for years to duplicate her meat loaf and I cannot do it. She didn't have a recipe. She just mixed in whatever leftovers were in the refrigerator. My cousin Peach was also frustrated that she couldn't make meat loaf like my mother
But she had a few special meals that people liked. We lived, for a time, below the flat of a Mexican woman, who taught my mother how to make authentic enchiladas. The way she made them took three days because she made her own chorizo, which had to marinate for two days before you mixed it with ground beef. Each enchilada was served on a leaf of Romaine lettuce.
I remember when she came home to announce that she had tasted a new dish and was going to make it for us. That was the first time I ever had lasagna. After that she made it frequently. My father's favorite food was Italian, so we had a lot of Italian food and if we went out to dinner it was generally to an Italian restaurant (which is why I never consider going to an Italian restaurant "special.")
The frustrating thing about my mother's cooking is that all of her special recipes she kept in one cookbook and one day I noticed that the cookbook was gone. She decided she wasn't going to cook any more and just threw it away without asking me if I wanted it. How I would love to have had all of her special recipes!
The thing that has frustrated me about my mother my whole life is
that she has no special feeling for anything. Jeri and I never had a tea
party when she was little because my mother had the tea set I used as a child
and didn't realize it, though I asked her several times if she was sure she
didn't have it. I didn't find it in her house until Jeri was grown...and
my mother didn't understand why that was such a disappointing thing for me.
I would love to have the diary I kept when I was in high school, but once I
moved to college, she threw it away. I don't have a clue what happened to
the story book dolls that decorated our bedroom, which we weren't allowed to
play with, but which just disappeared one day after Karen and I moved out.
Lots of things that were special to me got thrown out because she didn't see any
need to keep them.
PHOTO OF THE DAY
Brianna's Halloween costume
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This is entry #7890