Food and Family – Recipes for Fun

Ann H Gabhart Ann's Posts, One Writer's Journal

Thanksgiving is only a week away. It’s almost time for us to start making all those favorite dishes. What are some of the dishes that you have to have on Thanksgiving? Here in Kentucky we have some favorites. Of course, it goes without saying that we love our turkey and dressing. My family never stuffed the turkey. We always made a separate dish of dressing from crumbled cornbread and biscuits. Add some sage, chopped onion and celery, an egg or two and moisten it all with lots of turkey broth. Shape into balls, put in a baking dish, pour more broth over them and bake in the oven. As the people used to say on HeeHaw “Yum! Yum!” There’s something comforting about making dressing the same way as my mother made it. Well, almost the same. Actually, I took half her recipe and half my mother-in-law’s recipe and made it just right for us. I do want cranberries to go with it and I like just cooking the fresh cranberries the way it says on the package. Add some other side dishes like corn pudding and green beans, maybe a fruit salad and homemade rolls and I’m getting hungry just thinking about it. 

Not so long ago, I mentioned the grape salad the guys in my family love. And some of my Facebook friends said, please share the recipe. It’s actually “Blueberry Salad.” I got the recipe from my sister-in-law a long time ago and usually make it at Christmas time. A guy at church used to love it when I took it to church dinners. Mike was the kind of man you just enjoyed being around. Always smiling. Always embracing life. And he loved that blueberry salad, so I’d make it just for him. We have several dishes that way. Our pastor’s wife brings stewed tomatoes every dinner for one of the other guys. But then Mike had a heart attack and died suddenly. For a while, it made me too sad to bring that salad to church dinners even though I know Mike’s having a great time up in heaven. I missed him down here. He was one of only two people who ever bragged on my piano playing at church. For sure they were listening with their hearts and not their ears because I can barely plunk out a hymn on the piano. But he made me feel better than I was. He was an encourager.  

So here’s the recipe: Blueberry Salad
2 small pkg (3 oz) grape jello 
2 C boiling water
1 can crushed pineapple, undrained (I use a regular size can)
1 can blueberry pie filling

Dissolve jello in boiling water, cool slightly. Add pineapple and blueberry pie filling. Let jell.
Topping: Beat 8 oz. pkg. cream cheese and 1/2 pint sour cream until smooth. Add 1/2 C confectioners’ sugar. Mix well and smooth on top of jello mixture. Sprinkle with chopped pecans.

I also had a request for the recipe for what we jokingly call Mother-in-law pie around here. I should call it Son-in-law pie because he’s the one who loves it. It was introduced to the family by the same sister-in-law who brought us Blueberry Salad. I guess you can tell she’s a good cook. My pie never quite matches hers, but my sweet son-in-law claims to like mine best. My husband doesn’t, but it’s good that he’s loyal to his sister’s pie. Here’s her recipe. 

Chocolate Chip Pie
Mix: 1 cup sugar
         1/2 cup self-rising flour
Add: 2 slightly beaten eggs
         1 stick softened margarine 
         1 cup chopped nuts (I use pecans but some use walnuts)
         1 cup chocolate chips
         1 tsp vanilla
Mix well and spread mixture in a 9 inch pie crust. Bake 1 hour at 325 degrees.  

Hope you’re looking forward to a blessed holiday with lots of great family recipes. We’ll be having a Thanksgiving dinner Sunday at our church. But first I’ll be walking in the St. Jude Give Thanks. Walk on Saturday morning. Not doing too well on the fund raising, but our Team Kaelyn is working hard to raise money to help keep St. Jude researching and finding ways to cure other kids the way they did Kaelyn. You can check out my St. Jude page here. 

What brings a smile to your face when you see the Thanksgiving feast on your table?