This is my fifth installment of a series of posts describing an IHS moment leading up to Christmas. For those of you not keeping track (mom), IHS means Inward Heart Swell, the antithesis of the IMG (Inward Mental Groan). It is my attempt to highlight the joy in the mundane, run-of-the-mill, or not-so-noticeable side of the Christmas season.
Church cookbooks are the best. The are full of tried and true recipes that blue and silver haired ladies have been making for ages, and which have pleased the palates of the generations they serve. Orange Cake, All Day Stew, Sauerkraut Relish, German Chocolate Pie all tantalize the senses.
I have several of these books, and--heaven help me--they aren't all Lutheran!
The Lutheran cookbook does have a leg up on the other denominations in one area especially: Jello. Jello molds, salads, and desserts are a staple of the Lutheran cookbook, along with the Potluck chapter and - my favorite - the This & That chapter, for recipes so undefined and random they have no place in the regular sections of the book. (Wild Animal Milk, anyone?)
I am lucky enough have a recipe book from the churches of both my paternal and maternal grandmothers. They are special because I can find and use the recipes tagged with their names. They are (even more) special because my grandmothers have passed on to glory, leaving the need to cook and eat up to the rest of us waiting our turn to attend the heavenly feast already prepared for us.
Recently I had the privilege of making my grandmother's pie crust recipe.
I admit, it has been a while since I bothered (thank you Pillsbury!).
But really, my grandma's recipe is excellent -- and it makes about 5 crusts so I can freeze the extra, just like the dough boy's!
Who knew pie crust could give me such joy? But every time I pull one out of the freezer, I really do have a heart-filled moment.