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Your Mom's Recipes, Which You Still Prepare

Enchiladas Suizas

Chicken and Dumplings

Chicken Breasts in a White Wine Sauce with Mushrooms and Rice

Fried Pork Chops

Stew (more of a spicy vegetable/beef soup, really)

Cornbread Dressing

Fried Cheeseballs
Roast Beef with Biscuit Dumplings

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  1. Mandelbrot
    Sour cream cookies
    Stuffed cabbage
    Sweet & sour meatballs
    Cole slaw
    Turkey with cornbread stuffing

    3 Replies
    1. re: judybird

      Really interesting to me how many of these reference some form of cabbage roll! Perhaps it is because it isn't a 'trendy' dish right now, so there aren't new fangled variations that contemporary Chefs are publishing?

      1. re: sophiejj

        I'd be surprised if there wasn't a kimchee roll!

        1. re: sophiejj

          Well, now you've gone and said it! Countdown to sous vide stuffed cabbage begins now...

      2. Chicken paprikash from a recipe given to me by my late mother who followed the recipe to the letter.

        I embellished the recipe by adding 2 tablespoons of paprika to the pot instead of 1/2 a teaspoon. Also added a shredded carrot to the other aromatics of onion, celery and bell pepper. Because I like a heartier chicken flavor, boneless chicken thighs are used instead of breasts. Since I will have been wed to my wonderful wife of Italian heritage since 1960 (anniversary date Feb. 6), an 8 oz. can of tomato sauce is added plus 4 ounces of red wine used to rinse the tomato sauce can.

        Vivi, ama, ridi e specialmente mangia bene (Live, love, laugh and especially eat well).

        Buon appetito

        1. +1 on Chicken & Dumplings
          Cabbage Patch Stew ( sounds horrible; tastes wonderful
          Fried then braised pork
          +1 on the cornbread dressing
          Sunday Pot Roast
          Just wish she were still standing here watching me and making sure I do it right! Miss her every day

          1. Dove Cacciatorre
            Sloppy Joe's
            Pineapple creamcheese pie

            1 Reply
            1. re: mrbigshotno.1

              Pineapple creamcheese pie!?! Sounds delicious!

              I still make, on occasion, my mom's dumplings. I have the recipe written on a scrap of paper posted on the frig.

              Mom could cook, bake like nobody's business and I've rarely achieved her results. I've attempted but never achieved.

            2. Braised brisket - I've substituted sauteed onions for the onion powder and added a 1/2 cup red wine, but it's still her recipe (actually the recipe of the wife of one of my father's co-workers, but my mother's been making it for 50 years so I think it counts as hers).

              Stuffed flank steak - This was actually my paternal grandmother's recipe, which my mother learned after she married.

              1. I use her/Nana's recipe to prepare eggs (all sorts; omelets, frittata, poached, deviled).

                Roast chicken

                Baked Pork Chops

                Roast pork

                Lots more she did that I can't do as well, like meatloaf, any preparation of fish. Must have been the mom magic. :-)

                7 Replies
                1. re: pinehurst

                  Noodles and Pot cheese.Kinda like periogi's only faster. Carmelize lg sliced onion in butter. Cook 12-16z wide egg noodles-undercook a bit. Butter noodles add to pan with onion medium heat till hot. Hard to find pot cheese so add 12z container of large curd cottage cheese stir until cheese just starts to melt,plate,salt and lots of black pepper.

                  1. re: don515

                    I forgot about noodles & pot cheese. I don't do it often, but it's absolutely a favorite, if I made it with 2 pounds of noodles, DH would still eat the whole thing.

                    1. re: judybird

                      Yep no leftovers seems it gets better after it cools a bit in the pan!

                    2. re: don515

                      I also still make my mother's recipe for noodles and pot cheese, (as well as her recipes for tsimmes,lokshen kugel, passover mandlebrot, and hamantaschen). She didn't put onions in hers and she used farmer's cheese, Friendship brand. After mixing it all together she'd bake it for a little while to melt the cheese a bit and crisp up the noodles on top.Yum! I'll have to make some next week.

                      1. re: AmyH

                        Funny Story

                        My mom was not a good cook-got better. Remember one year she asked dad what would he like to eat for his birthday dinner after a pause he said stuff shells. Before it came out of the oven mom declared-damm that was a lot of work! Turns out she had suffed the tiny quarter in shells-the were damm good...

                          1. re: don515

                            awww! but that sounds amazing!

                    3. Unfortunately, lost my mom when I was only 8, BUT learned my way around the kitchen thanks to NANA, Dad's mom.

                      By the time I was maybe 12 or so, know how to make great veggie/beef soup and split pea or navy bean soup (when a nice ham bone was around.

                      I don't cook this very often, cuz it's for a big crowd... Nana called it "Canadian Stew"??? Big hunka beef (like pot roast), well browned in big soup pot. Then lots of BIG veggies... whole/halved carrots and stalks of celery, lots of smallish whole onions. WHole thing covered with water and whatever kinda tomato produce that was available... sauce, puree, etc. Long, slow simmer till beef was close to falling apart... potatoes added right near end so wouldn't go to mush. She ALWAYS made homemade bread to go along side... with lots of butter. The meat and veggies were served on a plate, the yummy broth in a mug/bowl, and the bread ready for dipping.

                      Learned how to make pretty darn good crab cakes from her, too. As she would say... almost all crab and very little "cake". Crab meat, finely diced onions/celery/bell pepper, blob of mayo, and egg and just "enough" bread crumbs. Formed, chilled, rolled in more seasoned bread crumbs and into good old cast iron skillet with bacon grease.

                      1. My Mom was not a very good cook, but I make a few of her shining stars:
                        Cabbage rolls
                        Sausage gravy
                        Green beans
                        Cubed steak with onion gravy
                        Vegetable soup
                        Pinto beans

                        1. Just off the top of my head:

                          Roast Goose
                          Roast Duckling with Apricots
                          Roast Duckling with Orange Sauce
                          Czech Bread Dumplings
                          "Varnitchka" (spelled phonetically) - a Czech chicken with fresh dill sour cream sauce dish
                          Chicken Livers sauteed with butter, lemon juice, & caraway seed
                          Greek-style Bluefish

                          There are many more I'd make that involve lamb, beef, & pork, but hubby isn't a red-meat eater, so we stick to poultry, seafood, & vegetarian dishes.

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: Bacardi1

                            Pastys, (from the U.P.), Holubky, and my Mom's mother's Czech Easter Bread

                            1. re: Bacardi1

                              Bacardi1 - I'd love your recipe for Varnitchka - sounds delicious! And Roast Goose - my Mom didn't make it but my grandmother did - when I was young my grandparents raised geese and chickens and every summer during our visits she'd roast a goose - haven't had one since then!

                            2. The biggest thing I learned to make from her is golubki or stuffed cabbage. She doesn't like to cook but there are things she does very well and this is one of them.

                              The biggest thing is that the meat/rice mixture is spread across the entire (leaving a little edge) cabbage leaf and rolled jelly roll style.

                              Anytime I see anyone filling and rolling it burrito-style, I just don't get it. She also mixes some tomato paste, flour, and half and half, which gets poured over the golubki about half way through cooking, so it makes a nice creamy, tomato sauce.

                              8 Replies
                              1. re: Violatp

                                Please please please share the stuffed cabbage recipe. That sounds so very interesting - I love the way I make it - which is of course the way my Mom made it (burrito style), but would love to learn yours too!

                                1. re: jackie0722

                                  You could easily use whatever filling you already use and just roll it up jelly roll style instead. :-)

                                  Like many "mom" recipes, none of this is written down. So, let's see...ground beef and pork is mixed with cooked white rice, maybe a 2 to 1 ratio. Add sauteed onions & mushrooms (sauteed in butter). Season to taste - I use Vegeta which is a beloved seasoning mix in lots of Polish food, though I think it's made in Croatia or somewhere. It's mostly MSG, I think!

                                  The cabbage is made by cutting out the core and putting the whole head in water to boil. She just (and now I do) would pull off leaves as they got tender. Oh, and trim down the tough stem end.

                                  Put as much filing on the cabbage leaf as it takes to still be able to roll it comfortably w/o the bundle splitting open.

                                  A few cabbage leaves on the bottom of the pan, then a bit of water in with the rolls before covering with a few more leaves.

                                  Halfway through cooking (goodness, I'm sorry, but it's another one of those "cook till done" things!) add the tomato sauce mixture

                                  I'm sorry I can't be more specific!

                                  See, I like it rolled this way better because the cabbage is more integrated into the whole roll. You get everything in each bite!

                                  1. re: Violatp

                                    Thanks so much - I understand perfectly the "unwritten recipe", and cook by feel, smell and taste too. Can't wait to give this a go!

                                    1. re: Violatp

                                      Violatp, I love this method of rolling the stuffed cabbages! I will definitely try it next time.

                                      I core, then nuke the whole head of cabbage for 5 minutes, pull off the softened leaves, then put the rest back in the microwave for another 5 while I'm rolling the first ones.

                                      1. re: jmcarthur8

                                        If you throw the whole head in the freezer overnight and then let it thaw and they are the perfect texture for wrapping. It breaks the cell walls. If you are worried test it by freezing a few leaves so you can be certain it works. It cuts the time and saves the house from the smell.

                                        1. re: suzigirl

                                          Oh, interesting! I'm absolutely going to try this.

                                          1. re: Violatp

                                            Tell me that you love the smell better afterwards. Trust me.

                                  2. re: Violatp

                                    OH. Just wanted to clarify that the sides of the filling-covered cabbage leaf are still brought in a bit before you roll. I know I said jelly-roll but I don't want anyone to think that I just leave the ends/sides open.

                                  3. My mother wasn't a gourmet cook, but she could whip up a delicious dinner every day without any effort. And it was real food, not stuff out of a box.

                                    Home-corned beef

                                    Thanksgiving turkey and sage stuffing

                                    Tuna casserole

                                    Stuffed cabbage

                                    Pot roast

                                    Mustard pork chops

                                    Beef stroganoff

                                    Summer apricot cheesecake

                                    Million calorie cake (though I don't do this one often!)

                                    Edit; I forgot one! It's not my mom's though.. it's my dad's meatloaf. Don't need any other recipe, it's just perfect.

                                    1. Ambrosia....
                                      Frozen Strawberry Pie....
                                      Cornbread Dressing....
                                      Coca Cola Salad.......
                                      Chicken Salad.....
                                      Strawberry Cake......
                                      Tomato Aspic.....

                                      3 Replies
                                      1. re: Uncle Bob

                                        Tomato Aspic on a bed of butter lettuce in the summertime is a gift from God!

                                        1. re: mrbigshotno.1

                                          Oooh - my mom used to make that as well; in little star-shaped molds. So pretty. But she liked to use Clamato juice instead of just plain tomato & would serve it when we were having steamed clams that we'd just dug from the bay ourselves. Good times.

                                          1. re: mrbigshotno.1

                                            Really?! I could have sworn the tribunal at Nuremberg crafted a statement against tomato aspic. ;)

                                        2. I'm a little sad to say nothing. Mom my can cook and she cooked almost all the meals we ate growing up. I just don't understand why I don't have one or two that are 'her's' that I still make today.

                                          1. None..but I still make my grandfather's recipe for homemade baked macaroni and cheese...and my grandmother's recipe for sauce, meatloaf and shepard's pie.

                                            1. Honestly, not much. I made her wonderful stuffing (oops, I mean dressing), and I secretlylove her refrigerator cheesecake dessert (which she stills insists is the "real" cheesecake). I have made a few changes, such as using real butter in the stuffing and unflavored gelatin and fresh lemon juice in the dessert.

                                              She was supposedly known as a good cook, but as a sign of the era, her food really was bland and unexceptional.

                                              Ooh, ooh! One more....her devilled eggs have ruined me for all others. We make them slightly sweet, rather than using things like pickles and onions. Much better.

                                              1. braised ribs
                                                mille feuille
                                                beef tataki
                                                pork chops

                                                my mom likes to eyeball everything, and gives the most vague instructions. if i want to learn a dish, i literally have to stalk her in the kitchen to make sure i get everything!

                                                1. spaghetti and meatballs
                                                  chicken matzoh ball soup
                                                  pot meat loaf

                                                  1. Ah, my mom wasn't known for her cooking. But there are some things I fondly cook in the manner she did:

                                                    Thanksgiving turkey and stuffing
                                                    Stuffed peppers
                                                    Grilled cheese

                                                    1. i have lots of family recipes I use... my mother and grandmothers are/were all good cooks.
                                                      grandma's goulash
                                                      several cakes, quick breads and cookies

                                                      1. My mother was not known for her mad cooking skills but there are a few things that I make of hers and i want them to taste of my childhood.
                                                        Chicken Ala king
                                                        Tuna noodle salad
                                                        Stuffed peppers... I hated these as a kid, and I did tweek the recipe a smidge because I cut the peppers in thick rings and stuff them and sear the meat /rice mixture right in the rings before adding the sauce. Having one ring the size of a burger is enough and the sear makes them taste so much better.
                                                        Bachelor stew
                                                        Amish casserole

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: suzigirl

                                                          My mom made stuffed Bell peppers a lot. I wouldn't touch the pepper but loved the filling.

                                                        2. I don't make very many of my mom's recipes verbatim, but there are several that I've tweaked and updated. However, I do still make her enchiladas just the way she made them when we were kids. They're a recipe she got from a friend in Texas, and I've never had any others like them (probably because they're totally inauthentic). I also make her fresh peach pie and a couple of other dessert/cookie recipes (many of which she got from her mom or grandmother).

                                                          3 Replies
                                                          1. re: biondanonima

                                                            My enchaladas include flour tortillas and are totally I authentic. Can you share the recipe?

                                                            1. re: suzigirl

                                                              Sure! My mother just called the sauce "Texas Chili," but from googling I think it's probably more accurately called "Texas Chili Gravy." Apparently it is at least somewhat authentic as far as Tex-Mex food is concerned, although it's really nothing like a Mexican enchilada.

                                                              Basically, you brown a pound of ground beef with a chopped onion and add maybe a tablespoon of cumin, 3-4 T. of chili powder, some garlic, salt, and maybe a little mexican oregano if you're being fancy. Toast all of that together for a minute, then sprinkle about 3 T. of flour into the meat and cook for a minute to take off the raw edge. Then add either beef stock or water, about 3 cups, and simmer until the sauce thickens.

                                                              To assemble, you use a slotted spoon to get some meat out of the sauce and put a spoonful in the middle of a flour tortilla, along with some cheese and a pinch of raw onion. Roll and repeat until you have a 9x13 dish filled up and/or the meat is gone. Then you pour the remaining sauce over the tortillas and top with more cheese and onions (I like to add black olives as well). Bake until melted and bubbly.

                                                              1. re: biondanonima

                                                                That sounds really good. Thank you.

                                                          2. Baked apples. I prefer to wait for the brief period in autumn when I can get those rare, precious Cortlands, as mom used to get her bushel in the fall from her friend with the orchard. Cortland apples are like hen's teeth, at least around here, and yet they're arguably the best eating apples on earth, perfumed, sweet, luscious, even the peels are delicious. They taste like love. Love filled with raisins, butter, brown sugar and nutmeg and cinnamon and a dash of cloves. Other apples bake well enough but it's like eating a fast food burger compared to prime rib, IMHO. "Mom's" baked apples have to be Cortlands. If I get a last meal before I go to see her again in the Beyond, that's what I want.

                                                            3 Replies
                                                            1. re: afridgetoofar

                                                              Aren't you the president of SAC--the Society for the Advancement of the Cortland?

                                                              1. re: Perilagu Khan

                                                                No, I'm just a humble Cortland advocate. You can keep yer tough, tasteless wax apples that fill the grocers bins and have the shelf life of a Twinkie. They look purty in a bowl on the kitchen table, for weeks, but have no perfume or flavor.

                                                                I'm not fiercely partisan about many things but I stand by my apple.

                                                            2. My twin sister and I love to cook so we were playing in the kitchen at a very young age - with Mom's supervision of course.

                                                              The summer we were 9 years old Mom went back to college to get a second teaching degree and my Sis and I were in charge of cooking dinner (her commute was 50 miles one way). We already knew some of her basic dishes - but she taught us how to cook a ham, a roast, rice and a few other things that were just reminders of what we had been helping her with. We continued helping out as we got older as she taught and we loved doing it.

                                                              Things we learned and I still make:

                                                              Meatballs with tomato sauce served over rice

                                                              pork chops with mushroom sauce served over rice

                                                              chicken with mushroom sauce served over rice

                                                              swiss steak (and yes, with rice)

                                                              round steak baked with Lipton's onion soup with mashed potatoes

                                                              cornbread dressing

                                                              Shrimp gumbo

                                                              Learned from my Dad -

                                                              His excellent BBQ chicken with home made BBQ sauce

                                                              From my Grandma -

                                                              Her oven baked chicken - roasted in oven tossed in flour and baked in a large dish - she just put salt and pepper on it - I sprinkle a generous amount of lemon pepper on it and serve it with my lemon rice - delicious and not as fattening as fried chicken

                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: Jeanne

                                                                ha me too
                                                                Prepared all dinners from the age of 9 or so. Mom was a teacher. I got PAID $2-3 per meal. More if I baked bread or dessert.

                                                              2. When I was raising my children I cooked all of my late mothers recipes.I am only cooking for myself now since June so about the only thing I still prepare of hers on a regular basis are her deviled eggs.

                                                                1. Mom's recipes:
                                                                  Beef stew
                                                                  "Syrian bread sandwiches" - a recipe my mom invented, ground beef cooked with frozen chopped spinach, bell pepper, onions, celery, & tomato, served hot as a filling for halved pitas.
                                                                  Beef & lentil soup with spaetzle
                                                                  Blueberry cake

                                                                  Grammy's recipes:
                                                                  "Goulash" (not a real goulash, but the macaroni/ground beef/tomatoes recipe AKA American Chop Suey.)
                                                                  Apple cake

                                                                  There are quite a few recipes that I grew up on that I've changed considerably to suit my own preferences, so I really can't think of them as "my mom's recipes" any longer:
                                                                  Chicken & dumplings (the dumplings are my mom's, but the chicken base is much different.)
                                                                  Split pea soup (the SHOCK in my family when I introduced the novelty of diced carrots in the soup!)
                                                                  Macaroni & cheese
                                                                  Tuna noodle casserole