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HAUNTING FOOD FROM PAST

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...my maternal grandmother's Brunswick Stew. She added lavender, thyme, some white wine; I've never been able to duplicate it.

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  1. The sauce at Merle and Grady Nash's Hickory Pit in Gravois Mills, MO in the 50s and 60s. The recipe was lost when the Grady died and the family shut the doors. Nothing like it.
    ever.
    Bob

    3 Replies
    1. re: SonyBob

      Bob, I have Grady's sauce recipe. I got it in November. I have been making it and giving it away and it looks like I will be marketing it. Get in touch with me and I will happily send you a bottle or two to try and would welcome your opinion. Thanks, Marty BigMBBQ1@gmail.com

       
      1. re: BigMBBQ

        I have emailed you about Nash's BBQ sauce, several times, but no reply, please contact me at drohnerd@gmail.com
        Thanks
        Don

      2. re: SonyBob

        Bob, attempted to contact BigMBBQ several times for Nash's sauce but have failed: Did you have any success? Gravois Lake road 7 was my home back then. Email me at drohnerd@gmail.com
        Thanks
        Don

      3. Call this a long gone guilty pleasure, but I still have fond memories of Franco American macaroni and cheese. Sold in a can, with long, thick spaghetti-type macaroni noodles and a white cheese sauce, it was a real treat when I was a kid. Sadly, it has been off the market for many years now.

        1 Reply
        1. re: Haggisboy

          I loved that, too...but my memories of it, though fond, are of something that probably really wasn't all that great.

        2. Howard Johnson's cole slaw (served of course with fried clams.) Nothing has ever met it for taste.

          4 Replies
          1. re: berkleybabe

            I'm with you on the clams, BB. Had them for lunch on Telegraph as often as I could!
            Bob

            1. re: SonyBob

              Our birthday treat, when we were young and we could go anywhere. 13 Mile & Woodward, w/ peppermint chip ice cream for dessert.

              1. re: berkleybabe

                "Our birthday treat, when we were young and we could go anywhere. 13 Mile & Woodward, w/ peppermint chip ice cream for dessert."

                I loved HoJo's so much it was my request to go after my first holy communion in 2nd grade! Loved, loved, loved those fired clams. And yes, peppermint chip ice cream for dessert!!!

            2. re: berkleybabe

              berkley

              my husband would agree with you about the HOJO's fried clams. that's all he EVER got in Howard Johnsons, wish they were still around. for him also. there was a restaurant on Ventura Blvd in Woodland Hills [when we were baby's, young and dating, he'd take me to]. he'd always order abalone. as a scuba diver who'd dive for his abalone around Catalina, he preferred to be able to buy it at a nice restaurant and get out of the pounding himself.

              for me

              it's the chili cheeseburger from Mission Burrito in Woodland Hills that I've been trying to find and duplicate... it's eluded me all these years. also the date nut bread from VandeKamps cafe that was also sold in supermarkets.

            3. Chef Carolyn Buster's recipe for beef bourgignon at The Cottage in Calumet City haunts me. There must have been a tremendous amount of carmelized onion in the recipe because it seemed very sweet and, yet, was a savoury dish. It was the best beef bourgignon I ever had. Meaty, sweet, with a noticeable kick from the red wine, it was just unforgettable. Alas, The Cottage closed after Chef Buster and her husband were divorced and the Chef died about seven or eight years ago, approximately.

              Subsequently, the Chef taught cooking classes at a school for a while and was involved in some PBS work. Some of her recipes were preserved for posterity, but, as far as I can tell, the beef bourgignon recipe was not one of them. If anyone has this recipe, I would really like to get it.

              1 Reply
              1. re: gfr1111

                Sorry! I forgot to mention where The Cottage and Calumet City were/are located. Calumet City is a city a few miles south of Chicago in an extremely industrial area. The Cottage was located on a busy industrial road and was the most incongruously located restaurant I had ever seen.

              2. Burnt ends from Jack's barbecue in Nashville in 1993. Meat candy! My one and only trip to TN - I live in New England. We have some good burnt ends here now but nothing to compare with Jack's. And of course the continuing list of favorites discontinued by Trader Joe's.....sigh.

                1. Arby's when they cooked real roast beef in the store and the Burger Chef chain back in the '60's/'70's. Not real big on Fast Food these days, but was back then.

                  http://www.freewebs.com/burgerchef/

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: mrbigshotno.1

                    I'm right behind you on both of those! Burger Chef was *the best* burger chain IMO. I loved Arthur Treacher's too ... I guess there may still be the occasional one out there, somewhere ... but none near me anymore. Alas.

                    1. re: mrbigshotno.1

                      LOL! My first job (which lasted 3 weeks, long enough to get the money needed for a trip I wanted to go on) was at Burger Chef, in Longmont, Colorado. We had to wear these terrible brown and orange double-knit uniforms, with matching hat. Can't believe people rememeber it fondly... I worked there in about 1983, and it closed shortly after. Must have been one of the last to go.

                      1. re: mrbigshotno.1

                        Oh, how I loved Burger Chef's Pizza Burgers!

                      2. There was a tiny Chilean restaurant just south of NYU in NYC in the late 1970s that had an amazing seafood soup.

                        My first experience of anything like real barbecue was at Smoky's in NYC, also in the 1970s. I don't remember it well enough to know how good it was compared to other spots

                        1. Helms Bakery products. Helms Bakery in Los Angeles used a fleet of trucks (like modern day ice cream trucks) to offer bakery goods at your door. Their breads, cakes, doughnuts, brownies and cookies were the best. They delivered in the southern California area from the 1930's to the 1960's. They were self insured and closed due to an lawsuit in 1969 when one of their trucks hit a child. There are only a handful of their recipes on the internet.

                          3 Replies
                          1. re: Antilope

                            oh Antil, how I loved hearing that sound that I knew was only a few streets away. I'd run in the house, or gallop to my house if I was on Sam or Blackstrap, just to grab a couple of nickles depending on how many chocolate donuts I wanted. yum

                            1. re: Antilope

                              Archway pink & white iced anise flavor molasses cookies from the early 1960's in southern California.

                              1. re: Antilope

                                The Helms Man! I had almost forgotten about this. Like the ice cream man but with doughnuts and pastry. Their jelly doughnuts were a real treat. After a while though, we noticed our Helms Man spending a lot of time at our neighbor's house. Lol.

                              2. The chocolates my mom used to make for Christmas...dark chocolate with some kind of walnut filling. Maybe with a touch of maple, but I remember that they weren't overly sweet. I haven't had them since she passed away. I never found the recipe with any of her cookbooks, either. :(

                                1. My grandma's Swiss Steak. I am now a vegetarian, but even though she has given me the recipe, I have never been able to make it taste like she does. I made tofu that was identical to her breaded pork chops, but darnit if I couldn't make a word for word recipe taste the same.

                                  1. There used to be a family BBQ / tourist "trap" out on a local beach ... it was called "Pueblo Village". The brothers had a secret recipe for their sauce. They went way overboard with the "secret" part ... to the extent that neither of the brothers had the complete recipe. They each did their "half" and then combined it for the final product. The pit was a great big wood-fired thing that you could smell all up and down the beach. The pitmaster never knew what was in either half of the sauce, so I'm told.

                                    They also had a ~real~ malt shoppe, dozens of bins of candies, a room-sized deli counter ... and the ubiquitous tourist shop alongside. They did have a couple cool barrels of polished riverstones and glass bits and things that I remember playing in while my parents were in the food side. And I had my first experience with maple candies there, too! ... eesh. Makes my teeth hurt just thinking about how sweet they were!

                                    Anyway, when one of the brothers died, the sauce died with him. I've tried to find out if anyone ever knew what went in that sauce. I'm thinking no one will ever know.

                                    I also have very fond memories of candies that one of the local citrus groves made. They called it "brittle", but it wasn't peanut-butter-brittle texture, it was more like a meltaway mint texture, but intensely citrus-ey, with little bits of candied rind mixed in. They had it in all the citrus flavors they grew - orange, lemon, lime, tangerine, grapefruit ... you name it. It doesn't seem like it should be too hard to make, but the recipes I've seen for meltaway mints are all too sweet. These candies were only slightly sweet, and mostly fruity. I'm no confectioner. I have no idea how to go about creating these things.

                                    Both are fond memories that continue to "haunt" me!

                                    1. Orange cake from a restaurant called Cul de Sac in Rome in the mid-80's. It was made with semolina which gave it a very unusual consistency and was very moist as it was drenched with a shockingly orange-tasting orange syrup. I had it several times when I lived there - I've never forgotten it.

                                      1. Chicken Satsivi at a restaurant called Kavkaz, which I swear was close by Red Square in Moscow, but I can't find any mention of it online anywhere. I did find a place called Kavkaz Bar in St. Petersburg, but I am 99.9999% positive this was in Moscow, 1990.

                                        Anyway, as the restaurant name would suggest, it serves mainly Georgian dishes, and I had the tastiest dish, Chicken Satsivi, cold poached chicken in walnut-garlic sauce. it looked fairly unappetizing, but it was the most delicious thing I ate while I was there studying.

                                        We had it served with fresh lavash and some sort of sweet and spiced chutney/relish, I think there was tamarind in it, but I have not been able to find anything like that chutney since. I have found a recipe for the chicken satsivi, which I'd like to make sometime soon.

                                        2 Replies
                                        1. re: BabsW

                                          there's a restaurant in Brooklyn called Kavkaz - I should check it out and see what they have!!

                                          1. re: pitagirl

                                            Oh, I may have to make a special trip to check that place out!

                                        2. There was an amazing restaurant in Del Mar, CA in the late 70's /early 80's called the Hydra- they had a dish called "Halibut Casserole" that I dream about to this day. i have tried many, many times to duplicate it, and have never come even close :( The worst thing is, I love halibut, but never cook it any other way other than trying to recreate this elusive dish.

                                          1. Burgers from Kenney's Drive Ins. The burgers were dipped in a ketchupy sauce that was thick and spicy.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: Wankel

                                              The chicken and fish, batter fried from the Irish Shanty in South Central Los Angeles. They wrapped it in newspaper and it was still hot when you got home if it got that far. They served it with a wonderful oil & vinegar cole slaw too. Can't duplicate that batter.
                                              Also, now I think it probably wasn't as good as I remember but I was a young kid, canned Libby's Chili-spaghetti. The pasta was way overcooked but loved it at the time.

                                            2. Schneider Special (pita, muenster cheese, tomato, grilled) from Schneider Center, Wellesley College, circa 1986. It wasn't really that good, but it's like Proust's Madeleine for me.

                                              1. Not a food, but a candy of sorts. I was at our neighbor's for one reason or another when I was very young; maybe 6 or 7? There were a bunch of people there so maybe it was a holiday. There was a box of candy that resembled actual cherries (I can picture it as if it were yesterday). I believe they even had stems and leaves. The taste was of a cherry candy but sort of sour and sweet at the same time. I think they may have been on the soft/chewy side as well. Here it is over 40 or so years later and I can still remember these candies. I have never seen nor tasted anything like it since. As I am writing this, the thought of marzipan crossed my mind, but I don't remember them having an almond taste at all; just cherry. This memory has truly "haunted" me most of my life!

                                                1. Win Schuler's beer cheese. In the 60's and 70's it was free with your meal. Along with their own oniony bread crisps. A small chain of upscale restaurants in Michigan. The flagship is still in Marshall. And I can get it here at Publix. Now if I could just get my favorite meal. I always ordered the duck ala orange. Not bad for a 10 year old.

                                                  1. I lived in a small company town in Texas from birth until 12 and a half. We had a door to door man who came by and sold his families' tamales on Monday nights. He always came by our house because my parents always bought them. They'd get 1 dozen hot tamales and 1 doz mild. They were wonderful and I miss them to this day.

                                                    Also had a cafe in town that sold the best chocolate meringue pie and coconut meringue pie - haven't had one since to even touch them.