Mom's Spaghetti DinnerWritten by Glynis Neves
It's funny how certain smells can trigger memories. My mother passed away almost 5 years ago, but certain smells certainly remind me of her. Case in point: I was recently visiting my father, and pulled a recipe from my mom's file to make dinner for him. I assembled the ingredients and began browning meat and chopping onions and green peppers. Before long, a pot of spaghetti sauce was simmering on the stove. As I breathed in, I was reminded of my mom.
Mom was the speech therapist for our school district. This kept her pretty busy during the week. Meal time was not fussy; mostly casseroles, tacos and other things that were quick and easy to throw together. But, on weekends and days off, mom would pull out all the stops for our family dinners. One of my favorite meals was spaghetti with mom's homemade meat sauce. Because the sauce had to simmer for several hours, we knew it was a special occasion meal.
As I simmered a pot of sauce on the stove for my dad, memories of my mom began to simmer as well. Pretty soon the kitchen was filled with voices remembering. "Remember when Mom took us to the movies and slammed her finger in the car door," "I remember Mom at the stove making batch after batch of fried chicken," "How about all the pots of caramel sauce she made for banana split parties?" My siblings and I all have our favorite memories, and as we shared them, our kids joined in with the memories they cherish of my mom. It was a wonderful afternoon.
And it all began with Mom's spaghetti sauce!
Do you have a special recipe that you have made part of your traditions? Is there a special person that initiated this tradition? (Taken from the Recipe story starter)
Here it is, for you all to enjoy!
Barb's Italian Meat Sauce
Original recipe by Barbara Adams
1 pound ground beef
1 can tomato sauce
2 C. vegetable (or tomato) juice
1 large onion, sliced
1/2 C. chopped green pepeer
3 garlic cloves
1 small can mushrooms, drained
1 tsp. oregano
Salt and pepper to taste
Brown ground beef. Drain grease. Add all other ingredients except mushrooms. Simmer slowly 2 to 3 hours. Add mushrooms and serve over long spaghetti. Top with Parmesan cheese.
Stories have always been a big part of my life. I grew up in a very theatrical family, and learned the art of storytelling early on. I'm grateful to my parents for teaching me how to express myself through story. Now that I have 5 children of my own, I find that I use storytelling every day. I love it when my children say, "Tell me the story about..." or "Tell us about a time when..." These are the times when genuine connections occur, and in this day and age, we need all the connections we can get with our children.
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