Saturday, August 14, 2010

Translating Over My Mom's Recipes

I grew up in a British colony where neighbors and friends got together every afternoon for tea and with a mom who made everything, and I mean everything, from scratch.  We had dessert every single day and off course, with tea every afternoon.  We left when I was almost 10 and headed to the the US.  Over here, my mother never got into baking all those desserts as she once had.  She would say that it was too much work and so much easier to buy it - bummer, right?

Now that I'm older and baking more, I wanted to take her hand-written cookbooks and translate them over from Portuguese to English and try to replicate those delicious desserts I remember growing up with.  My Portuguese is not very good, actually, it's very bad!  I don't speak it and barely understand it and rely heavily on the Internet to help translate things over.  She finally handed me one of her cookbooks last week - yay!  So old and frail, the pages lightly browned from age are barely hanging in there, the cover held together with tape....It's beautiful and I love it how it brings back the memories of watching my mother cooking with these books by her side.

Another challenge, reading my moms handwriting, but I'm getting through it.  Many of the recipes she created on her own.  She has an act for tasting something or looking at something and recreating it just perfectly.  Some of the measurements are in "tea cups", "coffee cups", and "shot glass" and in British/English units...I'm so meticulous about being exact about things that its already driving me insane trying to figure out the exact conversion.  Wish me luck though...After this one, she has a couple more waiting for me to do the same with.

3 comments:

  1. Cute Cakes! Great Ideas! Looking forward to seeing some of the Portuguese Cooking! Not sure what type of dishes they are but, sounds interesting. Any good desserts???

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  2. Thanks Janet Lynn! A majority of the recipes are desserts. Many different types of cakes including King's Bread and Fruit cake, pastries including their famous Pastel de Nata (Portuguese Egg Tart), cookies, biscuits, puddings...a lot of french style influence and very rich custards....so many and so yummy!

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  3. Sounds yummy!!! Good luck!! My grandma is from China and I have learned how to make potstickers from her. Now I need to learn how to make pitroski(russian hamburger) lol;)

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