Sunday, July 6, 2008

COOKING WITH NANA (My Mother-in-Love)

This is Nana and her husband Bruce. They only had a bit more than two years together but they were so very happy!

Lunch at Nana's was most often a sandwich,chips,relish items such as
celery sticks, pickles and olives......sweet iced tea with thin lemon slices
and fresh fruit and cookies.......often her Watergate you all
remember this one? (I added it at the very end)

A sandwich at her house was not just any sandwich! It was a work of was tasty and it took time to prepare. She would keep sliced ham
for a quick one but that was not her favorite.

I am going to share a few......The Hawaiian Ham Croissant was one she
clipped for her daily local paper.She loved cream cheese and pineapple and
ham and so this was really a perfect one for her. She did like a jello salad
with this one......
She loved grilled cheese sandwiches but again she added.....they were good
even though she had to have Velveeta cheese in them!
I never had a fried green tomato until I moved to the south and I never had
a fried green tomato sandwich until I met Uncle Joe and Nana. They loved
them. It really does make a good summer meal!
Spam was only used in her house for a Uncle Joe it was
junk......but he admitted he too liked a spread or fried spam for a
sandwich.....I still have not acquired a taste for it but cannot say I could
not eat one with Nana. The one thing she did different from the recipe was
she baked it first and got out the grease...she would set it on her small
roasting rack in a casserole dish and bake it about 30 minutes and than make
the spread. They both enjoyed a crispy fried spam sandwich too!
The next one was her a comfort food...She like Waldorf
anything! Like a can of Spam Underwood Chunky Chicken Spread was in that
pantry always too.
The last sandwich was one Elvis made famous but she and Uncle Joe swore they had them long before he was born. Each time we made these the debate would go on.....that was the fun part of eating with Uncle Joe and Nana. He was a local Country Club cook and she a "proper Southern Lady" that knew the way she fixed it was always the best. Now that they are both gone I will tell you that I liked Uncle Joe's "everyday" meals and her "tea party" food.
Enjoy these recipes.....I think most are from the 1950's or like the fried
green tomato one....just passed down.
Hawaiian Ham Croissant
4 oz whipped cream cheese
8 oz crushed pineapple, drained
4 croissants, split
8-1/4-inch slices ham
Combine cream cheese and pineapple in a small bowl. Spread 1 Tbsp of
pineapple-cream cheese filling on each cut surface of croissants.
To assemble sandwich, layer bottom portion with ham slice, 1 Tbsp of
filling, another ham slice and croissant top.
Nana would take 2 pieces of bread...she loved a good wheat bread....Add
slices of Velveeta cheese and sprinkle the cheese with sweet Hungarian
paprika. For 4 sandwiches, mix 1 teaspoon minced onion with 1/4 cup soft
Spread on top and bottom of sandwiches. Brown in skillet.
Special Fried Green Tomato Sandwich
For the best Fried Green Tomato sandwiches be sure to use the larger, center
slices of the tomatoes, and use the strained bacon grease for frying the
green tomatoes.

8 slices, thick-cut bacon...Uncle Joe had to have thick cut pepper bacon
3/4 C all-purpose flour (This meant Lily White to Nana...she used it all the time)
1/4 C cornmeal (here they differed again....he liked yellow cornmeal and she wanted white)
Salt to taste
Black Pepper, freshly ground, to taste
1 C milk
1/4 C bacon grease
3 or 4 large green tomatoes, sliced 1/4" thick (Uncle Joe almost measured
them and fussed if a maid did not get it just right!)
1/4 C mayonnaise
1 T prepared chili sauce
8 slices lightly toasted bread
lettuce...she like Romaine and he wanted Butter lettuce or Boston

cook bacon over medium heat until just browned and crispy. Drain on paper towels; reserve.
Strain the bacon grease into a cup and wipe the skillet with a paper towel.
Combine the flour, cornmeal, salt and pepper in a medium-sized bowl.
Add the milk and stir well. The mixture should resemble pancake batter.
Add olive oil to the cleaned skillet along with the strained bacon
grease. Place skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, dip the
green tomato slices in the batter, letting any excess drip back into the
bowl, then fry until golden brown. Add more olive oil to the pan if necessary.
Drain the fried green tomato slices on paper towels.
Combine the mayonnaise and chili sauce in a small bowl; spread about 1
1/2 teaspoons of the mayonnaise mixture on one side of each slice of toast.
Lay 2 slices of bacon over each of 4 slices of toast, then top each with 2
fried green tomato slices and lettuce. Cover with the remaining 4 slices of
toast, mayonnaise-side down. Cut the fried green tomato sandwiches in half
and serve immediately. Makes 4 servings.
SPAM Spread
1 c. mayonnaise
2 tbsp. sugar
2 tbsp. vinegar
1 tsp. salt
1 sm. onion
3 raw carrots
1 can Spam
6 hard cooked eggs, boiled
1 sm. green pepper
Grind Spam, eggs, carrots, onion and green pepper. Use coarse grater or
grinder. Add remaining ingredients; mix well. Good on Ritz crackers or as a
sandwich spread.
you have to cut it very thin.......that I learned the first time she had me
help her make these.....she would sprinkle the slices with flour and put
them in a bit of oil and let them get crispy! Than they were ready to put on
bread with a tomato slice and lettuce.....sometimes she would melt a thin
slice of Velveeta Cheese on top of them too.
Waldorf Chicken Sandwich
1 can Underwood Chunky Chicken Spread (4 1/2 oz)
1 pack Cream cheese, softened (3oz)
1/2 medium Apple, finely chopped
2 tablespoons Raisins
1 Celery stalk, finely chopped
6 slices wheat bread
In a medium bowl, combine all ingredients; mix well. Cover and
refrigerate 1 hour. Serve on whole grain bread.
1/2 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup crunchy peanut butter
3 tablespoons honey
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
2 to 3 ripe bananas
8 slices white bread

In a frying pan, melt 3 tablespoons of the butter. Make sure butter does not burn. In a small bowl mix together the peanut butter, honey, and cinnamon. Slice the bananas into 1/4-inch thick slices. Spread the peanut butter mixture on 4 slices of bread and cover with banana slices. Top with the remaining 4 slices of bread. Spread the remaining butter on both sides of the sandwiches. Grill the sandwiches in the frying pan until each side is golden brown.
1 package (4 serving) Jello Pistachio Instant Pudding and Pie filling
1 can (20 ounces) crushed pineapple in juice, undrained
1 cup miniature marshmallows
1/2 half cup pecans (Nana liked to toast them first)
1-3/4 cups Cool Whipped Topping
Mix pudding mix, pineapple, marshmallows and pecans in large bowl until well
blended. Gently stir in whipped topping. Cover
and refrigerate for several hours......


Lady Dorothy said...

Ooooh! I've got to try some of these! Thank you, Donna!

Amy J said...

Oh yum! I'm going to add these to my next 2 week menu list! Thanks!