Thursday, January 3, 2008

Amish Home Cooking and Hospitality


Hitch up the horses, and pile in the buggy...We are going out for some down home, Wisconsin style Amish Holiday Cooking! For us that means pile in the Ford F-150 and head out to Augusta, WI (about 30 minutes from Eau Claire) where several of our Amish neighbors live. Holiday time for the Amish is much more of a community devotional sharing time and despite the frigid Wisconsin air outside, warm greetings for all can be found within. Family gifts are handcrafted, homemade or hand me downs. Friends gifts are typically friendship and food which if you knew me, you would understand I am a connoisseur of both. This holiday season was no exception and it is always refreshing to visit with our simple neighbors although getting them a gift can be a challenge and requires some careful thought.

So we arrive and begin trading stories and another years worth of memories over some of the best homemade Blackberry pie I have ever tasted! I casually ask Mrs. Eicher for the recipe at which time she looks at me and says, "To you and your wife I will give my whole recipe library to share amongst your friends"; "To your lovely Child I will give the secret recipe of Preserving A Husband". and with a chuckle recited from memory:
How To Preserve A Husband
"Be careful of your selection; do not choose too young, and take only such men as have been reared in a good moral atmosphere. Some insist on keeping them in a pickle, while others keep them in hot water. This only makes them sour, hard, and sometimes bitter.
Even poor varieties may be made sweet, tender and good by garnishing them with patience, well sweetened with smiles, and flavored with kisses to taste; then wrap them in a mantel of charity, keep warm with a steady fire of domestic devotion and serve with peaches and cream.
When thus prepared they will keep for years."

The night ended far to soon and driving out of the driveway of that Amish farm seemed allot like a time machine warp from the early 1920's back into 2008. We have started sharing many of the free amish recipes with friends who seem to enjoy them as much as we do.

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