Memories of…

I met up with a friend last night for drinks at one of my favourite hotel bars in Toronto – the terrace of the Park Hyatt.   It was a lovely chance to catch up, and gaze out at the city on a beautiful evening…

Molly Stayner 1938The bar holds a special place in my heart as it was where my grandparents had their wedding reception in October 1940.  It was during the war and my grandfather was posted to Hagersville after joining the RCAF, so my grandmother took the train out from Saskatchewan, with my great-grandmother, and they were married in Toronto and honeymooned in Hamilton.

Now, my drinking companion last night is the guru who inspired me to start this blog so we spent a fair amount of time talking about blogging – particularly, what is worth writing about?  I was inspired to write today’s post about my grandmother.   We never lived in the same city so I don’t have many memories of her & food, but here are a few that stand out:

  • Havarti: I tasted havarti for the first time when I was visiting her in Saskatoon in my early teens.   I still very clearly remember sitting at her kitchen table and being blown away by the flavour…it still remains one of my favourite cheeses
  • Gingersnaps: we would anxiously wait every Christmas for our annual shipment of gingersnaps to  arrive.  My grandmother would bake up great batches and send them off to all of her children and grandchildren (tip: if shipping round cookies, save your frozen orange juice tins to pack them into).   These cookies were greatly prized and the inventory (kept in the freezer to keep them fresh) would often mysteriously deplete over night 🙂
  • Snowflake Salad: I will go on the record now stating that I do not like jellied salads, and I never actually tried my grandmother’s version but this salad is a Christmas tradition and I was lucky enough to get my aunt’s version of the recipe a few years ago…it is basically a layer of tomato aspic topped by a layer of cottage cheese and celery/green onion, and the only jellied salad that I hold in great esteem.

My grandmother passed away a few years ago but just spending this time writing about her reminds me of what an amazing woman she was, and how lucky I was to have known her through my life.

Do you have favourite food memories of your grandmother?

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About kate magee

I am a lifelong foodie who lives in Toronto and spends much too much of my time thinking, preparing, eating and writing about food...
This entry was posted in Memories, Random musings and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Memories of…

  1. fransiweinstein says:

    It was great to see you and I’m happy our cocktail hour inspired a blog post. I also love havarti. In fact, I just bought some.

  2. Jennifer Stayner says:

    Ahhhhh the ginger snaps in OJ containers! That brings back happy memories! I was particularly fond of Nan’s spice cake with brown sugar fudge icing. I remember getting my knuckles knocked (gently!) with a wooden spoon for picking out the raisins but I think Nan knew how much I liked her baking!

  3. One of my grandmothers used to make the most delicious date loaf – so good with a thick layer of butter – and my other introduced me to jarlsberg cheese (which of course led to many other cheeses) many many years ago. Lots of good memories 🙂

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