I don’t recall either of my Grandmothers having a “signature dish” or any that was my favorite. I came along later in life when they were older and they weren’t doing so much family cooking.
BUT, I can guarantee you that whenever we went to Grandma Coombs (which could be daily!), she was always ready for us with glass bottles of root beer or coke and either Archway lemon cookies or windmill cookies. And Grandpa Coombs was always ready and eager to entertain with games of croquet or Flinch. And when we were very small, rides all around the sidewalk in the little red wagon.
My Grandma Haning was an excellent cook, but I didn’t get to experience much of it. But she had plenty of candy stashes!! And Bonnie Doon ice cream too!
My mother is not a very good cook (sorry family—but you know it’s true!), but she makes spectacular ice tea. We’ve all tried to match her ice tea but it can’t be done. We think the magic is in the copper-bottom pots she uses.
Now my mother-in-law, Georgina, she is another story. Her cooking blew me away and set the standard. Forever and ever the dish I will remember most, though, is the roasted chicken she had prepared on the occasion when Joe Embil took me home to meet his parents for the very first time. She had completely deboned this chicken–yet left it intact–then proceeded to stuff it with ham and a creamy, seasoned cheese (think cordon blu) and then tied it all back together into it’s original shape. Then, after roasting, she simply sliced into it and served it along with the obligatory Cuban yucca, black beans and rice. WOW!
I didn’t get enough time with any of these women. They had more to teach me. There just wasn’t enough time.