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Recipe cards

December 8, 2010

One of my aunts stopped by last week and dropped off some old recipe cards that had been my Grandma Emma’s. My aunt had gone through them and chosen the recipes she wanted, and now thought maybe I would like to do the same.

They were lovely.

The stack was nearly three inches thick, and mostly hand-written on 3×5 notecards, though there were quite a few that had been cut out of newspapers, off flour bags or Dream Whip boxes.

Though, some were written on envelopes.

And one was even written on the back of a deposit slip.

The back of one recipe had some “helpful” household hints on it:

I think it was a small hand towel or apron someone had received as a gift once, but the paper was better put to use as a recipe card. “A very well organized house wife indeed!” Hee.

This one had four recipes written on both the front and back of a piece of paper. (The top recipe is for kolaches, which are a type of Czech pastry, I really want to try and make those someday soon!)

The recipes are your standard, midwestern fare. There’s a lot of casseroles and dishes that use “cream of” soups. There are also a lot of recipes for cookies, bars, pies and desserts. I think those are my favorite.

Like these Jelly Nests.

Or these “Cocoanut” bars.

Graham Cracker Pie, doesn’t that sound yummy?

And then there’s the recipe for Molasses Cookies. I remember Grandma making these by the bucketful.

Chocolate Crinkle anyone?

This is Grandma’s recipe for a Jelly Roll, a type of sponge cake you baked in a 10×15 pan, spread jelly on and then rolled it up (hence the name Jelly Roll – creative, eh?). Only we usually use it as the shortcake for strawberry shortcake. (The hub doesn’t think it counts, he’s used to the Bisquick kind.)

I loved looking through these. I know not all of them were written by my Grandma, I could easily recognize her handwriting, but I like to think of her mother or sisters or church ladies adding to her recipe box through the years. Some of the cards were very aged, their corners brown and worn. Some were splattered and splotched, not unlike some of my own recipe cards and cookbooks! Many of them are vague on the cooking directions, some say “cook in quick oven” or “bake in slow oven”. Some are just a listing of the ingredients.

And I wondered, did Grandma make most of these recipes? Did she ever make some of the meals she cut out of the Farm Bureau paper? What about all those Dream Whip ones? Why the love for Dream Whip, for that matter…

I’ve gone through and put the ones I wanted in my recipe box and will pass the stack on to my sisters to look through. Thankfully, many of the recipes had duplicates in the stack. And now my recipe box is filling up. Someday, maybe mine will be bursting at the seams as Grandma’s was – and my mom’s is for that matter.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. December 8, 2010 5:54 pm

    Oh my. Those are lovely. How beautiful to receive them!!

  2. Mishelle permalink
    December 8, 2010 8:07 pm

    Hi, I stumbled on your blog while looking for recipes… I hope you have a great time going thru your recipe cards. I had a chance to do that with my grandmother’s handwritten recipe books and spent days re-writing what I wanted before having to pass them back to my Aunt.

    Happy baking!!


  3. Kristyn permalink
    December 9, 2010 1:09 pm

    Do the kolaches call for chicken fat? I have a friend whose family used to run a Czech bakery in CR and that is how her grandma makes them–apparently that is the secret ingredient. I never really ate them until marrying into a Polish family. 😉 Must share my favorites with me! 🙂


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