A Feast

On the Tenth Day of Christmas, I’m spending the evening looking through my file of old familiar family recipes, handwritten and lovingly shared by so many dear ones I no longer see.
When I was in college in the early 80s, a home ec. major, I collected a lot of these family recipes and organized them into this file. As the years increased, so did the recipes shared with my widening circle of family and friends.
I still make a lot of these recipes on special occasions. And O! the Jello! Perfection Salad is still my favorite lemon Jello salad. It’s funny to recall what recipes Kansans in the 1960s thought were exotic… Hamburger Chinese Casserole…? Somehow it always involved a can of Cream of Mushroom soup.
The Hoeckers were and are excellent cooks, loved to bake. I’m enjoying seeing Rick’s handwriting on his favorite recipes again, along with his mom’s recipes, Mildred Hoecker. They both loved to cook, as do his four sisters (and Becky : ). Our shared holiday meals were such a treat.
There are recipes in here from many of our Kansas friends: Evelyn, Staci, the Marvins, Nancy, and countless others over the years.
My grandparents, Bert and Aileon Hoisington, owned and published a four-page weekly newspaper in Enterprise KS for over 50 years. My grandfather’s weekly cycle of labors at the Enterprise Journal ordered all of our days for decades, as it did for his father before him. I always think of him cussing at the clanging linotype whenever I sit at my computer and so easily press “send”… or click the edit icon a hundred times. Cut and paste actually involved sharp edges and jars of goo for my witty writer of a grand pa.
My grandmother had a weekly recipe column and was always trying out new recipes for her large family of six children and nineteen grandchildren who were always circling in. I loved to sit near the stove, stay out of her way, and watch her cook up big meals for all to enjoy.
So many feasts and so much love were served up for over five generations of family coming and going on Bridge Street. Tonight I’m there again, grateful for good memories tucked into my old accordion file of clippings and cards. It’s as much fun reading the back of the newspaper clippings as the recipes themselves. Did you know they used to list the names of all who were admitted to the Abilene hospital each week? My, how times have changed.
For another week, before he hops a bus for Points West, Max and I shall pull out the old “Beroaks” (Bierocks) recipe along with a few others and give it a go. Hopefully, Chloe can come over for a good hot meal too. I pray their memories of family feasts will be just as savory as mine and will sweeten even more as time goes by.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. rebagrant says:

    Thank you. Your post reminds me that the two boxes of recipes (Mother and Nana) I have yet to open is not about letting go of the memories but rather steeping ourselves in their richness. A new bit of richness for 2020.

    1. Time seasons these old recipes too❤️

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