So I’m taking the day off from talking about books to talk about another subject near and dear to my heart: food. Well, food and my mom. My mom was not necessarily a fancy cook. She mostly made simple things, but my brother and I were picky and simple things were what we liked. After we left for college, my dad took over more of the cooking and there was less macaroni and cheese and more complex dishes thrown into the mix.
But holidays were always my mom’s domain. She almost always did Thanksgiving and a Jewish holiday or two. The funny thing was, no matter what the holiday, the food would be more or less the same. It’s not that my mom lacked creativity… my brother and I just liked certain things that we wanted at every big meal. Those certain things included broccoli and cheese casserole, noodle kugel, matzoh ball soup and corn souffle. Eventually my mom had to put her foot down and say that we would no longer have matzoh ball soup at Thanksgiving. It just didn’t go, she claimed, plus it added more work. But all the other staples remained. In fact, last year my cousin hosted Thanksgiving instead and so my mom graciously cooked our favorites just to have in the house anyway. I had whole meals consisting of just broccoli and cheese casserole, noodle kugel and corn souffle that week. With those dishes, I did not need miss a main entree at all.
I say all of this because tonight is the start of Rosh Hashanah. A few friends and I are cooking dinner pot luck style. (When you don’t have family in the area, you make your own family.) So, when asked what I wanted to bring I didn’t hesitate – corn souffle, obviously. I’ve brought my mom’s corn souffle to a pot luck Thanksgiving meal in college, a pot luck break fast in New York and probably plenty of other get-togethers. It’s a crowd pleaser. And best of all, it’s super easy. The whole project basically consists of stir together and bake… my kind of cooking!
My mom’s recipe now lives in a cookbook she made for me before my senior year of college when I would finally have a kitchen. It was such a nice gift because making things was not really her favorite activity. By “made for me” though I really just mean she wrote out some of my favorite recipes and added them to this cute cookbook binder. It was so thoughtful then and now I love that I have these handwritten reminders of the meals she would make us.
And now you can all have her super secret corn souffle recipe too:
14 3/4 oz creamed corn
15 1/4 oz whole corn kernels
1 stick butter, softened
8 oz sour cream
2 eggs, slightly beaten
8 oz box Jiffy Corn Muffin Miz
Combine all ingredients, except corn muffin, in a bowl. Stir to combine after adding corn muffin mix. Pour into 2 quart baking dish. Bake for 40-60 minutes at 350 degrees.
*Not my actual corn souffle pictured. (It was still in the oven while I was writing this.)