I just returned home from family brunch at a local restaurant. Spending time with people I love is always a pleasure, and sharing food, conversation and laughter is a great way to spend a few hours on a rainy Sunday.
My childhood Sundays were filled with family get-togethers; aunts, uncles, grandparents and cousins gathered at our large farmhouse on Sunday afternoons and often stayed for supper. Supper was a collaborative event—aunts brought desserts or homemade rolls or jellied salads, and mom prepared the main course of vegetables from the garden along with roast chicken or beef.
We children were banished from the kitchen while supper was being prepared; our mothers sensed we would try to snatch a home-made pickle from the jar, or a spoonful of cranberry sauce from a cut-glass bowl, or a slice of chicken from the meat platter. Our mothers knew us so well.
Today I thought I’d share mom’s recipe for cranberry sauce, and since fall and pickling season will soon be upon us, one of her pickle recipes. Just thinking about her home-made pickles makes my mouth water and my taste buds tingle. This fall I’ll make a batch of these pickles to enjoy throughout the long, cold winter, and I’m sure that my taste buds will thank me.
3 cups cranberries—fresh or frozen
2 cups water
1 ½ cups white sugar
Boil cranberries in water until tender and open. Add sugar, bring to a boil again, cool and enjoy.
Sweet Mustard Pickles
1 doz. cucumbers
1 head cauliflower
2 lbs. pickling onions
½ cup salt
2 quarts vinegar
1 Tbsp. dry mustard
1 Tbsp. turmeric
1 cup flour
3 cups white sugar
Wash vegetables. Cut cucumbers into small chunks, break cauliflower into pieces & skin the onions. Sprinkle with salt & let stand overnight. In the morning, drain & rinse vegetables. Combine mustard, turmeric, flour & sugar. Blend in vinegar. Cook, stirring constantly until mixture thickens. Pour over vegetables & if necessary add enough vinegar to cover. Simmer ½ hour. Pour into sterilized bottles while still hot. Seal tightly.