Sometimes, when I make a dinner from my childhood, memories flood back from life growing up at home. Married and mom life is great!… busy, but great :) I would not give it up for anything in this world. I adore it and treasure it.
But sometimes, I would do anything to live one more day at home, my parents home, just to let them know how much I appreciated them at the time. I think sometimes (actually most of the time) I took for granted the simple things that came with being a “kid”. Mom doing my laundry, mom cleaning the house, dad answering just about any homework/technical question I had on the spot, dad and mom both killing the spiders when I couldn’t even stand the site of it, parents paying the bills I never saw and mom always having a meal prepared, no matter how busy she was.
When I am cooking the meals my mom cooked for me, the smell takes me back to those simple days and the wonderful parents I have and makes me want to be that for my kids. I want my little girl and boy (and any other kids that may enter our home) to have the same experiences I have, where one day they are taken back to our home through a memory, no matter what point they are at in their lives, and remember that they had it good. I want the smell of a familiar recipe to remind them of me. Is that weird? Memories are such a huge part of life, at least in my opinion. They let us recall specific times, specific faces, specific voices, specific smells and specific places. I never want to lose a single one of my memories. Ever.
My mom made this all the time for us growing up. Since moving out, I cannot remember the last time I had it. I almost forgot about it actually, between my college life and now, it just somehow slipped through the cracks. The other day, I pulled out all the recipe cookbooks my mom handed down to me and noticed a page marker. I opened to it and saw this recipe. I could not believe it… how had I forgotten about this recipe?! I could hardly wait to make it for my own family. It comes from Taste of Home’s Casserole Cookbook and I adapted it just slightly to mute the spice so my kids would enjoy it. It was one of my absolute favorite dinners as a kid, and I am sure it will become a favorite in your home, too!
(recipe adapted from Taste of Home’s Casserole Cookbook)