Thursday, September 27, 2012

Stuffed Cabbage (Halupki)

Halupki, Stuffed cabbage, Pigs in a blanket, Golabki ... however you say it....YUM!

Every year I  look forward to my parents Labor Day visit and this year we were really laid back; seeing some sights in Greenville, eating some great homemade food and just really being with each other. Of course we also did a lot of work. When my parents come, and especially my Dad, work will be done! This year, and as always, I was happy to have the help. We totally cleaned my garden out and replanted my fall garden (pics to come soon!) My mom and I redecorated my back porch in bright new hues that just make me happy, and best of all my mom and I combined efforts in the kitchen to cook one of our family's favorite meals. As a family, we always called these Halupki or Pigs in a Blanket but every time I explain them to someone they have a different name for them- stuffed cabbage, golabki, dolma etc. So of course I had to look up the origin of this simple comfort food. See the history and heritage of this food here.  I thought that this was really an amazing story of something I have eaten since I was a tiny girl.
It was interesting, while making these with my mom this year, I asked how my little northern Italian Grandmother learned how  to make this Slovak/ Polish recipe. She explained that when my Italian Gram married my Pap who was Slovak, this was one of his favorite meals.  Since my Pap was the baby and all his big sisters looked out for him, they took my Gram under their wing and showed her how to make Halupki. And over the generations this has become one of our winter, comfort food staples.

When my mom and I both spotted this huge cabbage at the farmer's market we knew that it was destined for one thing...

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Pickled Hot Wax Peppers or Jalapenos

Canned hot peppers
So where have I been? I have had a crazy last few weeks. As fall comes, and summer, my favorite season of the year quickly slips away, so does a lot of my personal time. This seems to happen every year. Maybe it is symbolic in some way. I will have to think about that.... Anyway, aside from being back to teaching school and still working at my office, I have had a great past few weeks surrounded with people I really love and have had some unique experiences. My parents were here for the Labor day weekend (more to come on that visit),  I went to a local artisan craft festival with some great friends, this weekend I attended a totally inspirational continuing education seminar that I am excited about implementing at my office, and thanks to a new knitting store in town, I have gotten bitten again by the knitting bug. Christmas gifts are flying off my needles daily.

I know that I have been slacking on my blog and it is not because I don't love you but I guess I took a hiatus because life happened. For the past 2 weeks, I have felt guilty about not blogging. I have been cooking and baking, but just not letting everyone know about it. Today, however, I got two quiet reminders to step it up. First, this morning, I wake to a web page congratulating me on my blog and asking me to add my blog to their food website. Cool huh? Then after my inspirational seminar ended this afternoon, I was still floating in the possibility of "helping others" and making a difference and I receive a grounding text from my sister asking "When is there going to be another Bonbons & Biscotti Blog?" Ugghhhh!

Even though from my front door to my sisters it is 543 miles, at times we somehow know without talking , that the other is in need of something, whatever that something might be; emotional support, a reason to laugh or as today a kick in the butt. I think this unspoken connection has really become obvious to me over the past year. At times I feel like she needs me in some way and at times when I need a little push (like today,) or some sort of comforting, she has seemed to know. Even about a months ago she had a dream about something that I have been contemplating in my life. These "sister stories" are not uncommon but I guess to me it is a new finding in my life and a welcomed connection with someone who is very important in my life.

So little sis, I posted this recipe for you since we both are such dorks when we make this recipe; lining our newly canned, beautiful jars up on the counter to appreciate and show everyone. Sister canning pride!

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