Thursday, March 04, 2010

Mama's Lasagne

Many moons ago, I was enticed by a certain dating profile - the results, as you know, have been very positive, with by-products of a wedding and a baby (thus far).

One part of his profile, however, has always intriged. V mentioned his passion for cooking, especially his Mama's Lasagne.

I think it was a lure, as I have never yet been party to eating such a dish. He does a mean line in steamed veges and is a dab hand with the grill pan (and even the barbeque) but the said lasagne is but a mythical dish in our relationship.

Its not that we have been lasagne-less (a fate considered on par with starvation according to 'Salina) - I have even imparted several recipes here boasting about the deliciousness that is the lasagne that graces our table on occasion (too rare by 'Salina's standards, too often according to the bathroom scales).

However, tonight I have to wait no longer. Of course, I had to wait until Mama actually travelled half the world and negotiate with her to prepare the mythical dish.

I will give you the verdict soon. (oh, and MIL is a gem. She even got to read my blog yesterday - and laughed at the last post that I wrote. And not a maniacal "if only she knew" sort of cackle but a real one. If she has noticed the mess she is too polite to comment and both daughters tick her boxes of great kids - so successful thus far. We are taking her and her travelling companion on a trip this weekend - trial by long-distance transportation... Stay tuned)

Do you have a childhood dish you need your mum to visit and prepare for you ever?

There are many from mine - my mother may have learned to cook later than many of her peers - but we rarely saw her culinary flaws (although there was the occasional dish that caused mystery illnesses).

Those that didn't included her Spag Bog (does everyone's mum have their own version?), Roasts, Curries (back in the day when "Curry" meant Keen's powder and sultanas in the stew) and Slices. I can't pick one (which was also always the case at birthdays, when you got to demand your favourite feed) - although her Tuna Mornay is always a winner.

Its funny - most of her dishes became my dishes, and although I have probably altered every one of her staples, it does give a warm glow as I cook them thinking about her.

(NB - most of this post was written yesterday - before ingestion - it was delicious!!)


Jayne said...

Lordy, I remember the sultanas in the curry, would always fish 'em out and leave 'em on the side of the dish lol.
LOVE my mum's steak and kidney pie - home made even down to the pastry.
Except she didn't write it down and I don't have a hotline to heaven so I go without.

BB said...

Glad the lasag-ney went well - look forward to a dissertation on it by your eldest this weekend! See you soon...
PS My husband is dry-retching at the curry sultanas but recovers well when the chocolate slice is mentioned!

MissyBoo said...

My mum's chicken casserole was always my favourite. My taste buds must have changed over the years because it doesn't seem as special now that I'm a grown up.

Oh and Boo, like Salina thinks lasagne doesn't get served up often enough in this house! I think she would have it every night if it was on offer

Leenie said...

So glad things are going well with MIL. That get-together can be worrysome for both ladies.

I think the guy remembering the wonders of Mom's cooking might have alot to do with hungry boys who will eat anything not nailed down, and then carrying the glow with them to their marriage. No one can live up to that. I told hubby if he wanted chicken and dumplings like his mom cooked he would have to do it himself.

Debby said...

I knew your mother in law would adore you. What's not to love? You are practical and love her boy, and have presented her with a new grandbaby.

Hi Mama V!!!!!! *Waves hand wildly*
Give everyone a hug from America for me too!

Tamsyn said...

Haha sultanas and keens classic Aussie cuisine! Glad its all going well :)

Mary O. Paddock said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mary O. Paddock said...

Glad it went so well.

My mom is a terrific cook. It would be difficult to name a favorite.

I quit trying to cook like my mother in law when I learned (after many "failed" attempts) that the much lauded meatloaf my husband had raved about was made up of ground beef, cream of mushroom soup, stove-top stuffing, and catsup.

Anonymous said...

Don't knock the good ole curry with Keen's powder, and sultanas. And diced apple! It's Mum's curried sausages recipe that I now make and my kids love! I doubt my Mum still makes it, but my girls may well be cooking it in 20 years time for their kids!

I make a much better spag bol than my mum. But I could never make the Chicken a La King - that I demanded when I was recovering from glandular fever - like she did.

Glad all is going well with the visitors!!


Good old macaroni and cheese. It was a treat when dad wouldn't be home for dinner, he didn't like it.

To this day I think of my mother when I grate the cheese. There is no written recipe and I'm sure my sisters make it slightly differently but I make it the way I see her making it in my minds eye.

Stephen loves it, calls it Mom Dinner, and I always make extra and freeze it in single servings for quick meals for him.

Lin said...

I love cooking dishes the way my mum did too! Nostaligia...

Though there is one I have not attempted so far: my mum makes the bestest, meanest potato salad! It's not just a side dish. It's filled with goodies of all food groups and a meal on its own. And I cannot thing of a better meal to eat on a hot day. It's the first thing I ask her to make when we visit.

Hm, lasagna. Recipe maybe? Or is it really a big secret?

Glad you and MIL are hitting it off! Look forward to hearing about the road trip.

Anonymous said...

Hey I can't remember my GMAIL so I am not sure how to be a follower. Anyway all looks good great to see you the other day.

Maude Lynn said...

So glad you lucked out with a nice MIL!

Farmers Wifey said...

I am in love with my homemade lasagna..!

Pencil Writer said...

Jeanie, I've been absent. Please forgive AND please explain: "Spag Bog." I'm not in the know with that term. I wondered about some derivative of Spaghetti something-or-other, but kind of doubt it, with all the differences in Oz and USA. Nonetheless, good food is good food.

The one dish my Mom used to make ages and ages ago that I'd love to duplicate is her homemade chili with red Kidney beans. I love it. I love the memory of it. Sadly she doesn't remember ever making it, let alone what the recipe might be. Cooking was never one of her favorite things to do, but I well remember (as the second oldest of 8 children) many things she used to make--prior to the last 4 arrivals.

Since she doesn't enjoy cooking, and she's been a widow for over 11 years, and she lives with on of my sisters, she "gets by" w/o cooking.

Excuse me. I had to laugh a bit. Some time last year, after moving in with my sister, Mom called and asked: "Do you know what to do to get rid of a burned smell in the house?"

I gave her my remedy: put some cloves, cinnamon and if you have some orange peel in a pot of water to simmer on the back of the stove.

When I asked what had burned, she told me: "I was defrosting a piece of bread in the microwave so I could toast it." I had to pull the rest of the story out of her. I can't remember if my sister or my nephew finished the details. Apparently she set the microwave on high for 3 min. And claims that she stood in the kitchen while it fried. I'm still amazed that the microwave didn't catch on fire and then burn my sister's house down.

Bless Mom. She's sometimes not in tune with what's going on. My sister and I both recommended--strongly recommended--that she toast her bread or sit it out on the counter for a couple of minutes for it to defrost.