“Begin doing what you want to do now. We are not living in eternity. We have only this moment, sparkling like a star in our hand - and melting like a snowflake.”
- Francis Bacon

Sunday, February 08, 2009

Finishing a long, put-off task, The Family Recipe Book

Have you ever had something on your mind for a while...you write it down, forget it, and then remember what you needed to do at the most inappropriate time, like when you are in the middle of traffic? Well, what you see is my little project that has been haunting me for months and months. Both of my sons asked me ages ago to take all of my recipes and those of both their grandmother's to make a book for them. I kept putting it off because I knew it would be a monumental task, one that would take maybe a whole morning. I guess there are some things that we aren't supposed to know because just the scanning took me from about 10 in the morning until just after the local news around 6:30 that evening.

I had plenty of assistance, as you can see, from my kitty Camille Suzanne. She would sit on the scanner to keep it warmed up for my use. Camille would also play with recipe cards and those tiny snippets that I cut out eons ago from the Lifestyle section of my local paper. I can't imagine doing the job without her able and encouraging expertise.

So, the scanning is finished. I am happy. Camille is taking a nap. After all she worked all day long so she needs her beauty sleep. Tomorrow I'll pull up each scan page (8.5" by 11") on my computer to add dialogue to some of the recipes so the boys will have a little history to go along with the various dishes. ("This was grandma's favorite recipe for onion soup", that kind of stuff.

There are several plastic sleeve protectors hanging around this house, probably in my office, that I'll use for the pages of recipes, which as it stands, appear to be about 50 double-sided per book with maybe 5-8 recipes each side. I still need to go shopping for the notebooks. I have something in mind and hope I'm able to locate what is rattling around in my head as "the perfect book".

My project is well on its way. The scanning is complete as far as I can tell. If anything was missed all I'll have to do is make another page that Jeff and Dave can add to the recipe books on their own. I can see now why they wanted me to do this for them because a lot of what is in my personal recipe supply I had gathered since they married. There would be no personal history for them to recall and no relevance to them. There was a request that I just scan leaving the originator's handwriting and side notes. Where did I get two son's that are so nostalgic?

My next project for the boys is to begin the genealogy searches that they've been wanting me to do, so they'll have their family history to show their children and their grandchildren. I've got the program for the task but like these books, I just keep shoving it aside. Shame on me, spring is just around the corner, so I'd better get on the ball and take that task to hand as well. Because once the weather warms, I'm not in the house much. You'll find me sitting on the ground, playing in dirt, happy as all get-out, because I'll be spending time with my friends the flowers!

Here's one of my favorites. I adored Tirimisu from the moment it hit my lips...YUM!

CHOCOLATE TIRAMISU
  • 6 ounces container mascarpone cheese
  • 2/3 cup whipping cream
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • Chocolate Zabaglione, recipe follows
  • 2 1/2 cups espresso coffee, warmed
  • 24 crisp ladyfinger cookies (recommended: Savoiardi)
  • Unsweetened cocoa powder, for garnish
  • Dark chocolate shavings, for garnish

Place the mascarpone cheese in a large bowl and set aside. With an electric mixer, beat the cream and 1/4 cup of the sugar in a medium bowl until soft peaks form. Fold the whipped cream into the mascarpone. Then fold in the chilled Chocolate Zabaglione. Cover and refrigerate.

Whisk the warmed espresso and the remaining 1/4 cup of sugar in another medium bowl until blended. Line a 9 1/4 by 5 by 2 3/4-inch metal loaf pan with plastic wrap, allowing the plastic to extend over the sides. Working with 1 cookie at a time, dip 8 cookies into the espresso, and arrange in a single layer side by side over the bottom of the prepared pan.

Spoon 1/3 of the mascarpone mixture over the cookies to cover. Repeat dipping 8 of the cookies in the espresso and layering the cookies and remaining mascarpone mixture 2 more times. Dip the remaining 8 cookies in the espresso and arrange side by side atop the tiramisu. Press lightly to compact slightly (the last layer will extend above the pan sides). Cover the tiramisu with plastic and refrigerate at least 6 hours.

Unwrap the plastic from atop the tiramisu. Invert the tiramisu onto a platter. Remove the plastic. Sift the cocoa over the tiramisu, and with a vegetable peeler or sharp knife, make dark chocolate shavings and sprinkle over top.

Chocolate Zabaglione

2 tablespoons whipping cream, or heavy cream

1/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips

4 large egg yolks

1/3 cup sugar

1/4 cup dry Marsala

Pinch salt

Add cream and chocolate to a heavy small saucepan. Cook over medium heat, stirring often, until the chocolate chips are melted and smooth. Set aside and keep warm.

Whisk the egg yolks, sugar, Marsala, and salt in a large glass bowl until blended. Set the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water, but do not allow the bottom of the bowl to touch the water. Whisk the egg mixture over the simmering water until it is thick and creamy, about 4 minutes. Remove from the heat.

Using a large rubber spatula, fold the melted chocolate mixture into the egg mixture. Cover and refrigerate to chill completely.

Free Signature Generator

17 comments:

RobinfromCA said...

Mimi, this is such a special book to put together for your sons. They will treasure it! How wonderful that they want the original handwriting on the recipe cards and how blessed we are with technology that allows us to provide such things!

I have a whole list of family history websites on my blog to reference when you're ready to tackle that project. The internet has made it so much easier!

Robin
http://weareflyingnow.blogspot.com

Mimi said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
debbie said...

HAPPY PINK SATURDAY MIMI
THANK YOU FOR STOPPING BY AND VISITING MY BLOG. I HAVE ENJOYED READING YOURS AND THAT SPECAIL KITTY BED ON THE RADIATOR IS DIVINE.
WE HAVE A RESCUE SCHNAUZNER...ANDY PANDY, WE RAISE WHEN HE WAS FOUND BY A NEIGHBOR WITH HIS EYES STILL CLOSED AND WE BOTTLE FED HIM...HAD TO DO ALL THE THINGS A MOTHER CAT DOES...HE THINKS WE ARE HIS PARENTS....THEN WE HAVE SARGE SPACEY WHO WAS MY SON'S KITTY WE ADOPTED....SPACEY WAS ALWAYS WANTED SO HE DIDN'T KNOW REJECTION.......BUT ALL 3 ARE SPOILED AND THEY ARE BEST FRIENDS.....
BLESSINGS
debbie

Terri and Bob said...

I have wanted to do the same for my daughter. I started it when I got married, before I knew how many kids I would be blessed with, and it is STILL not complete! Thanks for the inspiration to continue!

Lorri said...

Oh Mimi,
I had tucked that project pretty deep! I am in the process of doing the same thing for my kids, but alas I have not done more than a few of them. I guess I will have to pull this out and get ready for it. I have plans to surprise the girls with it for Christmas. Have a great day!

bj said...

I so need to do this for my children and grands...Oh, my, such a hugh job...gotta come up with a fast and easy way to do it....
I wish MY mom had doone something like this...instead, I have a plastic bag with some of the best recipes in the world left by her. I just need to sort through them...
You are doing a great job...

Nola @ the Alamo said...

Don't know if this would interest you or not, but office supply places like Kinko's will bind your pages into a book for a minimal charge. I keep planning to do the same, and had checked with Kinko's about the binding, just never got around to it. Someday...

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
bj said...

I just signed up as one of your followers so I won't lose you...and so I can see when you post again.
Your book sounds so nice,...I am not sure I could do all what you are doing but I do intend to get the recipes all together..just not sure when, ya know..SO MUCH TO DO and SO LITTLE TIME !!

Terri said...

Hi Mimi! Oh my, your white cat is GORGEOUS. That is the prettiest little creature I have ever seen. You must have to vacuum every day! I do it once a week and it takes forever with one cat's hair!

Your recipe book sounds like a real blessing for the family. I think we all wish our Moms and Grandma's (especially if they were good cooks, like mine) would so a project like this. what a gift, and with your own hand, which makes it sentimental years down the road...


xoxo

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

Hello Mimi!

What a wonderful project! I did something similar on a smaller scale when my son got married four years ago. I made a scrapbook with favorite family recipes along with photos of fmaily members cooking or at family celebrations or BBQ's. My daughter-in-law's Mom contributed her family photos and recipes also. Then I left a third of the scrapbook empty so they could add their own recipes.
My daughter -in-law and son loved it and it was a hit at the shower.

I have a cat who looks a lot like your Camille Suzanne, only mine is a boy named Bo :-)

Cherrs, Pat

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

PS - your Triamisu recipe looks divine! I'm copying it now -- thank you!

Shirl said...

Hello and thank you so much for stopping by and leaving such a sweet comment. What a pretty place to work in and a great idea for the recipes, I'm in love with Camille! SHe is just precious! Triamisu recipe looks yummy!
Bless you, Shirl
Shirls Rose Cottage

kymber said...

Hi Mimi,
Great post! I, too need to sit down and put together a cookbook for my children. I have been putting it off for years (I am such a procrastinator) The amount of work and thought that went into your labor of love must have sent your brain into overload at times! What a huge task - but I am sure it will be well appreciated. Your sons are very fortunate to have a mother who took the time and effort into making sure the memories of their childhood and their families favorite recipes live on for the next generations.

Guess I need to get busy doing this too - thanks for the gentle nudge :-)

I LOVE Tiramisu! My hubby proposed
to me while at a cute little Italian restaurant. We were eating dessert and he handed me "the ring" when I had my mouth full of Tiramisu! It has been my favorite dessert ever since :-)

Thanks for sharing your recipes !
Blessings,
Kymber

Sheri said...

What a yummy recipe! And that cat is adorable! haha, I knew what he was thinking! Mine is the same way.
Hugs,
Sheri

Marilyn said...

I just love it when my fur-babies "help" me with a project. They are my sweeties.
I have a cookbook that my Grandmother made scrapbook style decades ago. I treasure it!
Have a great day!
Hugs, Marilyn

FRENCH LAUNDRY said...

Congrats on doing your project. I still have a scrapbook from my son's Make A Wish trip that we took when he was 5 which isn't done (he's 9 now). This is me, blushing.

Judy