After Mom died in 2013, I wanted to make a cookbook of all of her delicious, time-tested recipes. The plan grew from one into three. This happened, but you need to know—I’m not the cook Mom was! She was fabulous and loved every minute.
Over her 84 years of life, Mom collected recipes. She tried them, graded them, and wrote them out in her delicate cursive handwriting. And she tried many of them out on us, her family. So, after she died, I wanted to honor her by making a cookbook.
After listening to my creative idea and the volume of recipes, a discerning friend suggested a series. So, I went with her suggestion. I created the series, From Grannie’s Kitchen, Volume 1, 2 and 3. I chose “Grannie” as a part of the title because she so loved being a grandmother, and she welcomed everyone into her home and especially her kitchen.
From Grannie’s Kitchen Cookbook—Pies, Cakes & Christmas Candy, Volume 1
In December 2014, I published volume 1, From Grannie’s Kitchen Cookbook—Pies, Cakes & Christmas Candy. It took me more than a year and a half to do this. My grief overwhelmed me often, but a visit to her kitchen and her recipes became a healing respite. Originally, I created them for family Christmas gifts in the years after her death. I never planned to sell them, but my family encouraged me, so I have made them available to you.
Each of the covers has a fun picture of Mom in one of her favorite settings. On the cover, Mom dances at the Dog Bar in Cuchara, Colorado on the fourth of July, wearing a patriotic hat and beads.
In this cookbook:
- Enjoy a delicious pie recipe from Germany dated before 1951
- Sample mouthwatering Christmas goodies
From Grannie’s Kitchen Cookbook—Beverages, Cookies, Meats, Vegetables, Mis. & Records of a Rancher’s Wife, Volume 2
In 2015, I published volume 2, From Grannie’s Kitchen Cookbook—Beverages, Cookies, Meats, Vegetables, Mis. & Records of a Rancher’s Wife. On the cover, Mom wears a Mexican sombrero at one of the Branson-Trinchera reunions. She always took part fully.
In this cookbook:
- Savor good home cooking
- Laugh at Mom’s rancher’s wife records of her enormous meals she prepared for the ranchers who helped Dad with branding and shipping.
From Grannie’s Kitchen Cookbook—Casseroles, Mexican Dishes, Relish, Sandwiches, Salads & Desserts, Volume 3
To end the series, in 2016, I published volume 3, From Grannie’s Kitchen Cookbook—Casseroles, Mexican Dishes, Relish, Sandwiches, Salads & Desserts. On the cover, Mom sets at the AT&T Stadium in San Francisco when we saw a Giants’ game. She dons a panda bear hat that Giants’ fans wore to honor their third baseman, Pablo Sandoval. My brother loves the Giants and bought her the panda hat.
In this cookbook:
- Sample spicy Mexican Dishes
- End your meal with a yummy dessert
What makes these cookbooks unique?
I scanned Mom’s recipe cards, so the recipes are in her handwriting, with smears and stains from years of use. Often she identified who gave her the recipe and then rated it. Each cookbook is full color and a beautiful book of 20 pages of her great recipes, which makes it more costly to print. I picked out three fun-filled and outrageous pictures of Mom for the covers. Each cookbook focuses on a couple of themes.
Today I keep all three cookbooks on my counter in the kitchen and use them regularly.
What do you think? Do you have family recipes that need to be shared? How have you shared them? Share your ideas below.
Visit my website to find out about my new book, Coronavirus Reflections: Bitter or Better? and my other five books and three cookbooks: https://laradasbooks.com
8 thoughts on “One Cookbook or More?”
What an awesome tribute to your mom, Larada. I applaud you. My mom and aunt loved cooking too. However, like most Caribbean cooks, their recipes came out of their minds and weren’t written anywhere. Many times, I have wished that I had the foresight to have written them down.
Thanks so much for your comments.
Hey Larada, I was looking forward to hearing about your cookbooks. I love the picture of your Mom in her cowboy hat; you can see how very beautiful she was. What a joy to have these recipes all gathered and organized!
Thanks so much. I was thinking about you when I wrote it. I love them! The pictures captured her spirit.
What a wonderful to keep your Mom’s spirit – and her yummy recipes – alive!
Thanks so much.
What an excellent way of honoring your mother. My mother doesn’t have recipes. She just does it and so me, too, from memory and gosh and darn. Lucky that there’s YouTube and there’s many videos of Chinese cooking. All your books sound so interesting.
Thank you so much. My mom’s mom didn’t use recipes. So interesting to watch her cook.