Wednesday, February 4, 2009
My in-laws love to reminisce about the "old days" in the Polish neighborhood. This Christmas Cliff sat down to interview his 90-something Aunt Kate. Turns out her memories aren't so rose colored as his parents. As one of 12 children living in a small city apartment, her memories centered more on the work to be done. Times were certainly tight.
Cliff asked Aunt Kate to talk about was family recipes and meal times. In doing so, Cliff's father remembered his own childhood foods. He started cracking up and told us about breakfast.
The new immigrants made use of every scrap of food. (So unlike their future granddaughter-in-law) One favorite thing was a pork rendering that was sort of like a pâté spread served on toast. There is a word for it in Polish, but the kids didn't know any word for it in English, so they called it "lard." Cliff's father swears that it was delicious.
The other thing that the kids had was milk with a bit of coffee in it.
The story goes, one day his sister's kindergarten class was talking about breakfast. The teacher asked each child what breakfast foods they enjoyed. Some liked eggs others enjoyed oatmeal. Little Rita shared that she ate "bread and lard with coffee" for breakfast!