Monday, May 10, 2010

Something from Nothing

Ok. Once again I am going to try to put my thoughts into words. Hang in there with me since I am not very good at it. Unlike so many of my Blogger friends!

Yesterday was Mothers Day and naturally I was thinking of my Mother and Grandmothers, none of whom are still with me.

Both my Mom and FarmDad's Grandmother loved to get a bunch together and cook for them. If they fed you , they liked you. If they fed you a lot they loved you. The amount of food and the type of meal was a gauge of how much they thought of you. They both lived through times that would make those of us today just crawl into a corner and cry. These tough, strong women had to feed families on very little in the way of supplies. They were both farm wives and made do with what they could gather or grow on the farm. In hard times they could take nothing and make something out of it.

Both of these ladies taught me to be thankful for what I have and not to worry about what I don't. They were amazing women and I am lucky to have had them as mentors. So here is a recipe that both of these women made for me that takes that nothing and makes something of it.

Beef and Homemade Egg Noodles

Start with a chunk of meat. It can be a tough sub par piece because you boil it to death! The longer you boil it the more the connective tissues will break down and it will become edible! Throw an onion, some salt and pepper or what have you in with the meat to add a little more flavor.

Mom and Grandma Sugar both did this by hand. Since I am a somewhat modern woman I love my Kitchenaid mixer! Beat eggs and a bit of salt till they are foamy. I always figure for 1 egg per person. I always have leftovers but they heat up really nice!

Next add flour. Then add some more flour... then some more.

When you have a stiff dough turn the dough out on a floured board or just on your counter and knead in some more four! Knead the flour in until it is a VERY stiff dough.

Roll the dough out pretty thin. I like mine to be about as thick as the space between the tines of a fork. If you like really chunky noodles leave it slightly thicker.

When you have the dough rolled out to your prefered thickness, sprinkle it with flour and just rub it over the top. This keeps your noodles from sticking together when you cut them. Then you start at one side and roll the dough up.

Slice the roll into 1/4 to 1/2 inch pieces. Again it depends on how chunky and thick you want your noodles. Unroll the noodles .

Scatter the noodles out and coat them with a bit of flour to keep them from sticking together and let them dry for about a half hour. Longer doesn't hurt it just takes a little longer to cook.

Bring the broth from the boiled meat to a boil and drop the noodles into it a few at a time while stirring to keep them from sticking together. Add the meat back into the pot. Cook for about 30 minutes. All the extra flour on the noodles will make a nice thick gravy. If it isn't thick enough for you add a little corn starch and water and it will thicken right up.

Mom and Grandma always served them over mashed potatoes. Add a veggie and you have a filling nutritious meal from basically nothing! Eggs, flour, salt and a cheap piece of meat.

And for desert we had Strawberry Shortcake with homemade whipped cream!

Mom and Grandma Sugar would have been proud!
Thank you both! I love and miss you!


Christina RN LMT said...

That looks and sounds delicious, Farmmom! Thank you for sharing with us. :)

Jon said...

Your post made me think of my grandmother. She was tougher than most and helped raise a family during the depression. Everything was hand washed, hand grown and hand made, including dumplings and noodles.

She made chicken and noodles, which were her specialty, mostly out of a reaction to the fact she couldn't get the hang of making dumplings like her mother and refused to be defeated.

Thanks for the post. Memories are special, expecially when they make your stomach growl.;)

Old NFO said...

Looks good, and yes, Grandmas never used measuring anything... :-) But it sure tasted good!!!

DaddyBear said...

Farmmom, that looks absolutely scrumptious. It's amazing how good a meal you can make with a few simple ingredients.

Matt G said...

You made damn good use of a KitchenAid mixer, there, FG.

FarmGirl said...

Er... Matt? I know you're very busy, and the taglines on blogger are itty bitty... but Farmmom wrote that. :P

You can pretty much assume that any of the recipe posts are hers, actually... she's where I get all my recipes from anyway.