Thursday, October 30, 2008

Bad Girl Contest: YOUR Grandma's Recipes


Time is up! Thank you for your entries!
Winner will be announced this weekend.

My great-grandmother, Frances, at age 10.
I wonder when she learned to make her Ice Box Cookies,
that are still being made FOUR generations later?

I am currently working on a Family Cookbook, which has inspired this nostalgic contest. My mom and I have gathered recipes from aunts, cousins, uncles, grandmothers, etc. and it has been great to go through them, get them ready for the book, hear what people treasure about them.

I now have recipes that were passed down to my grandmother, Lorraine, from her mother, Frances, whom I never met; recipes from my other grandmother, Pauline, who died when I was eight, that I found in my mom's recipe box.

my grandmother, Pauline, and her sister, Elfie

So many great recipes to try, that have more meaning because widespread members of my family have enjoyed them enough to save them and share them.

Submit your favorite old-fashioned recipe,
one that has some meaning to you and your family.

*If you ever debated sharing a "family secret" recipe,
now would be the time!*

I want to know:

  • Which old-fashioned recipe, passed somehow through your family, is your favorite? It could be from your mom, your grandma, your great grandma, your aunt, your grandpa, whoever it may be that is older than you!
  • Is it just a favorite of yours, or has it become a treasured favorite of the whole family?
  • Who made it when you were little? Who gave you the recipe?
  • Is it a tradition of some kind in your family?
  • Does it show up at every family get-together?
  • What memories do you have about this dish?
  • What or whom do you think about when you're preparing this dish?
  • Just what is it that makes this recipe special?
  • Has the recipe evolved? Have you adapted it from the original or do you make it exactly like your grandma does/did?

Of course, I'm asking for the recipes, but also for your stories--the recipe's background, where the recipe came from, who gave it to you, why you love it.

The winner selection will be completely subjective, based both on the recipe and the story behind it. So bring 'em on.

The prize, because it can't be a contest without one, will be this beautiful, old-fashioned style Cheese Spreader/Knife Set by Cambridge Silversmiths. This is a four-piece, fine stainless set in lovely red that is dishwasher safe. It is beautiful, can make any cheese plate feel more special, and would be a nice addition to your kitchen.

To give everyone time to peruse their mother's and grandmother's recipe boxes, (and because I realized just how busy I will be in the next couple weeks)
I am setting a generous EXTENDED deadline of
October 30th, 2008, at midnight PST.

**If you are not currently a member of The Bad Girl's Kitchen, you may leave your recipes as comments on this post for faster entry, OR go here to request a Bad Girl invitation in order to post directly on this website.**


Stephanie said...

Hi, I'm visiting from For the Love of Food, because she says you're hosting Taste&Create for October. Sounds great! I don't know if there's a preferred method for entering, or anything, but I would like to be on the list for October's T&C. My blog is Fun Foods on a Budget, and the URL is

By the way, I love the idea of your family cookbook and recipe contest. Somehow, a recipe just seems more magical when you know it's been passed down by generations of women (or even men) in your family. I may have to riffle through my collection of recipes to see if I have anything special. :-)

Min said...

Hi Stephanie,

I do need your email address for T&C. Nicole copied me the email she sent, so you'll find my email there if you'd rather not post yours...

I'd be very excited for you to enter the contest! I was hoping for a greater response; I just love family recipes! I hope you find one you'd like to share!

Stephanie said...

My e-mail is Thanks!

reddquilter said...

Hi, Mindy
Finally I've gotten around to getting this recipe to you. Brian's family have been making homemade rootbeer for more than 50 years. When Brian was young his job was to bottle the rootbeer after his mom had mixed up the brew. He hated that job hence he hated the rootbeer. It is a bit different than most homemade rootbeers. With less sugar than most recipes and with the addition of hops which gives it a most unique taste. Brian now loves the rootbeer, which we make each summer. Our kids and grandkids love the brew as well. I think it was a test when I was dating Brian , if I liked it then I was in, if not, it was time for Brian to look for a new girlfriend. Good thing I love it, for I am very lucky to have Brian in my life !

Lambert's Homemade Rootbeer
1 bottle Hires extract (sorry to say that Hires doesn't make this any more, so use Shilling instead)
7 1/2 cups sugar
Hops (steep 1/4 to 1/2 cup in 1 quart boiling water for 5 minutes, strain and then make sure to cool down before adding to rest of mixture.) You can find hops in most health food stores.
1/2 tsp. yeast dissolved in warm water
Add enough water to make 5 gallons.
Bottle and cap (if you can't find a bottle capper we have found that you can reuse pop bottles (the plastic bottles, either size and screw the tops on very tightly) However old (recapable not screw top) brown beer bottles work the very best.
lay bottles on their sides and store in a warm dark place for about a week (in summer). It will take longer in cooler climates. Chill and enjoy!

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