Monday, October 05, 2009


When the kids were still at home I used to spend a lot of time cooking. Pelmeni was something we all liked and took a long time to make, the criteria for a good afternoon of entertainment. It is a bit like Russian ravioli, with a pasta dough shaped into circles and filled with a meat mixture. They are then frozen on a cookie sheet and stored in plastic bags until you want to eat them.

I'm glad I have kept most of my cookbooks from that ancient time when no one ever heard of antioxidents and people were not afraid of food. This recipe came from one called "The Dumpling Cookbook." It featured many versions of dumplings both savory and sweet. Another of our favorites were Empanadas deep fried in lard....I would get out the ingredients and we would all go to work mixing, kneading, rolling, shaping, and wrapping the dough around the filling into little balls. The technique was explained in the cookbook. Even when Jesse, age four, was in a cast from his hips to his feet I hoisted him up onto the counter of the kitchen island where he sat with stiff, splayed plaster covered legs making balls of filling and dough. It was a companionable way to spend the day.

Today I thought about those times as I put myself to the same task alone. It sure was a lot easier with two extra pairs of hands.
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