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Happy-Gourmand

Sock-hop memories

We're off on our yearly trip to a sock hop and vintage car show in Washington.

It's a taste of years gone by, back to even before what it was like when I was a kid. Martin and I are now recognized at the sock hop.

The locals at first just couldn't believe a couple of Canadians would come so far for a dance.

Then, they saw how much we loved it, so now we're welcomed with hugs every summer. We love to hear the stories; people remembering when they would see Buddy Holly play at a hall, or what it was like to cruise the roads in those spiffy hot rods.

"Time does fly,” they say, sometimes shocked to think how long ago that was.

But then, we've been going to the sock hop for 10 years.

It is a tough thing to get to the age where you start to think how much things have changed. As I get older, I find that I take great comfort in knowing that some things stay the same.

Sometimes, even though they have changed, there is still an interest for how things used to be (take the music of the ‘60s for example, which seems to be still strong after all these decades.)

I suppose that is where my real soft spot lies; I like to know that people remember “the good old days,” that the memories of times gone by are not lost or forgotten.

Recently, my stepdaughter, Chloae, and I reminisced about her trips to the dance.  

I realized that times with friends and family are when we see just how much things change, as we see the same people. The food that binds those occasions is often the glue that keeps all the memories alive, blending the comforts of days gone by with the flair of something new.

The flavour of an Oreo cookie still brings back memories of summer camping trips. My mom always made cookies at home, but for a road trip she would buy Oreos.

In the heat of summer, it was easy to pull the wafers apart and make a double-dose cookie.

Chloae won't be at the dance this year, which is too bad, because she and her dad do a mean bit of East Coast swing.

But I wouldn't be surprised to find out she's making a pie this weekend, to remember days gone by.

The ladies of the Wauconda Country Home Club hold a pie sale during the car show, to help raise money for upkeep of the Wauconda Community Hall. Some of the best pie I've had in my life has been on those picnic benches.

They have a full cookhouse now, with a fryer, so the menu includes burgers and fries, and hot dogs, as well as pie. But we still look forward to upholding tradition. 

I have some of the recipes now, as I bought a copy of their cookbook (another fund-raising venture). I've posted my favourite before (Edna's Apricot Pie, last summer).

Here is another really good one from the book, and very easy to do.

My wish for you this week is that you have time to sit back and think on days gone by. If you can't manage that, at least try to capture a moment that you can reminisce about years from now.

We will be toasting to your happiness and fond memories when we come out to cool off from all the dancing!

CREAM CHEESE HUCKLEBERRY PIE

(You could easily substitute the apricots or peaches that are falling off the trees at the moment, and it would be equally as tasty.)

  • 4 oz cream cheese
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar (icing sugar)
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream (whipping cream)
  • 1 pastry shell, baked and cooled (you could use a graham crust if you like)
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 3 cups fresh or frozen berries

Beat cream cheese and powdered sugar till smooth; fold in whipped cream, and spread in cooled, baked piecrust. (If the crust is still warm, the cream will melt.)

Combine sugar and cornstarch in a medium pot. Add water and lemon juice and stir till smooth; stir in fruit. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Let cool, then spread over cream cheese layer.

Refrigerate till serving time.



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About the Author

Kristin Peturson-Laprise is a customer experience specialist by trade, which means she is someone passionate about people having a good time. 

Her company, Wow Service Mentor, helps businesses enhance their customer experience through hands-on training, service programs, and special event coordination.

Kristin enjoys her own experiences too, and that is what she writes about in this column. She and her husband Martin Laprise (also known as Chef Martin, of The Chef Instead) love to share their passion for food and entertaining.  

Kristin says:

"Wikipedia lists a gourmand as a person who takes great pleasure in food. I have taken the concept of gourmandise, or enjoying something to the fullest, in all parts of my life. I love to grow and cook food, and I loved wine enough to become a Sommelier. I call a meal a success when I can convey that 'sense of place' from where the food has come . . . the French call that terroir, but I just call it the full experience. It might mean tasting the flavours of my own garden, or transporting everyone at the table to a faraway place, reminiscent of travels or dreams we have had."

 

E-mail Kristin at:  [email protected]

Check out her website here:  www.wowservicementor.com

 



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The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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