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    In every family, someone ends up with “the stuff.” It is the goal of The Family Curator to inspire, enlighten, and encourage other family curators in their efforts to preserve and share their own family treasures.

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    « Feeling Adventurous? Mom's Recipe for Fish Eye Salad | Main | The Family Curator Turns 4 on July 4 »

    Looking for a Frog-Eye Salad Recipe?

    Someone out in the Blogosphere found The Family Curator this week while searching for "frog eye salad with minute tapioca", but the only reference I can find is in a comment posted to this article, originally published in July 2009. The comment was from my Mom, Suzanne Freeman, because she thought her recipe for Cherry Delight needed a few more instructions. 

    Mom would not want anyone to miss one of her prize recipes, so I will try to find her copy of the famous Frog Eye Salad. It's just another example of strange and mysterious search phrases, but where-ever you are... come back soon.

    Writing a Family Cookbook is a Recipe for Memories

    My copy of our family cookbook is falling apart. The back cover is loose, several pages are torn from the binding, and food stains mark our favorites throughout. It is my only copy, all others having been given away to new brides and family and friends in the past twelve years. As I told my sister this week, maybe it’s time for a new edition.

    Volume One of Food We Like was a simple publication. Photocopied on one side of a sheet of 8 1/2 x 11-inch paper and cut down to 8 1/2 x 5 1/2 inches, our biggest challenge was figuring out the page order. Deanna and I punched three holes in the side margin and tied the 42 pages together with green ribbon. People liked it.

    After eight years, our food tastes had changed and we thought we needed an update. Color copies were out of our budget, but we used black and white images from our childhood and our motherhood to illustrate over 140 of our favorite family recipes. We creatively named it, Food We Like, Volume Two Among the favorites were memorable recipes for Gin Fizz inexplicably made with vodka, Layered Bean Dip, Maynard’s Swedish Meatballs, Toad In the Hole, Boys Favorite Coffee Cake, Dan’s Garlic Soup, and Kip’s Grilled Steelhead Trout, plus desserts like our real Red Velvet Cake, Harvey Wallbanger Cake, and Cherry Cobbler.

    We included recipes contributed from every branch of our combined family trees and from many friends with a list of names and relationships, a “Who’s Who in The Cookbook.” We included a Table of Contents and carefully detailed Index. Surprisingly, we were not contacted by a publisher for reprint rights.

    The memories of writing the cookbooks are as special as the recipes. My sister and I decided to collaborate on the project, but it wasn’t until we were halfway through it that she admitted her husband, Kip, did most of the cooking at their house. I didn’t know that! Times change, however, and I think she has taken over that task. Maybe it’s time for Volume Three. Thank goodness we don’t have to choose a new title, Food We Like seems to have done the job quite well.

    Here is an old favorite from our mom, Suzanne. I seem to remember a delicious dessert. Maybe we can coax her into making it to serve at the next SCGS Jamboree!

    Cherry Delight

    Suzanne remembers… the last time I made this was in the early ‘60’s. We were invited to spend the weekend with friends in Big Bear. On the way up the mountain, an unexpected storm struck and the snow was so heavy that chains were required. Of course we were not prepared, not could we find any chains available for rent. I remember holding this dessert on my lap the whole way up and back since we couldn’t make it up the mountain. Needless to say we had Cherry Delight all week for dessert at home and I was so disappointed that we couldn’t make it up to visit our friends, that I haven’t made it since!

    2 cans red sour cherries
    1 can crushed pineapple
    1-1/2 cups sugar
    1/2 cup minute tapioca

    Drain cherries. Heat cherries and crushed pineapple with juice. Add sugar and tapioca to fruit and continue to cook; stir until medium thick. Set aside to cool.

    Crumble -
    1 cup butter
    2 cups flour
    1 cup oatmeal
    1 cup brown sugar
    1/2 tsp. baking soda
    1 cup bran flake cereal
    1 tsp. vanilla
    dash salt

    Mix crumble ingredients well. Put half crumble mixture in bottom of ungreased pan (size not stated). Add fruit misture, then top with remaining crumble. Bake at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes.

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    Reader Comments (9)

    It's amazing how much we have in common in addition to our name. I've "published" two editions of our family cookbook and we're working on a third. Photos and family stories are a big part of the attraction although I do come from a family of great cooks. ;D

    Here's my cookbook story from" rel="nofollow">Shades.

    July 30, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMoultrie Creek

    I loved reading about your project and seeing it on Lulu. It's hard to believe how much "personal publishing" has expanded in the last decade.

    I'm looking forward to seeing your next edition; let me know if you want to swap titles!

    July 30, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterFamily Curator

    You Denises have inspired me to kick it into gear with my own family cookbook before the holidays! I work with centuries-old manuscript cookbooks all the time, where friends and family have contributed their favorites in their own handwriting, and I love how these modern ones carry on the tradition -- and allow us to share more widely (not to mention the fact that they are a bit more legible!)

    July 30, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterRebecca

    Just a note to let you all know the size of the dish for the Cherry Dessert. Use a 12X9 Pyrex dish, serves 8-12 with ice creme or 6-8 with whipped creme or plain. Good served warm. If fact I think I'll make it for the next potluck. Next cookbook will have my Frog-eye salad. Mom

    July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAnonymous

    Ack! Another recipe requiring canned sour cherries. We are currently in cherry crisis here in Chicago: I usually churn out two cherry pies a month. That was until my local grocery store stopped carrying its own brand of canned sour cherries - and only carried the Oregon brand. At $4.55 a can! I was paying $2.89!

    So now it is off to Amazon or some other vendor to order online. I will probably need to buy 12 or 24 cans but that's ok. At least I'll save the 10.25% sales tax we have here in Chicago.

    July 31, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterThomas MacEntee

    Ohhh Thomas, I feel your pocketbook pain. Do you have Trader Joe's in Chicago? I've seen sour cherries on their shelves, and their prices are usually pretty good. Can you fed ex a pie out west?

    Rebecca, want to join a cookbook swap with me and Moultrie Creek?

    August 1, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterFamily Curator

    I'd love to! Though first I have to make one, which is easier said than done. :)

    August 1, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterRebecca

    I've been following your blog for over a year now and thoroughly enjoying your posts. This one really caught my interest. Talk about serendipity--I just realized your sister is one of my neighbors. Maybe she'll bring Frog Eye Salad to the next neighborhool get-together.

    July 5, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAndrea

    Small world, Andrea! Deanna saved the day with the recipe; I could not find it anywhere, but she seems to have a copy from Mom. Maybe she will make it for a summer canyon event.

    Thanks for your comment.

    July 6, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterDenise Levenick

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