Preface - What's Cookin'
English Ivy, Stories & Recipes
Have you ever noticed how English Ivy grows? How it intertwines and connects one thing to another? How it ends up covering everything in it path?
The recipes and stories we past down from one generation to another are like the English Ivy. It is the vehicle that connects the past with the present and keeps the memories of those Paris' alive for the future generations. When those stories and recipes get spread around from families to families, it makes it possible for the Generations to spread the knowledge (stories) around from one to another. While each sprig of Ivy branches off into yet another direction to create another family tree. Sometime that sprig gets broken because of deaths or bad feelings.
For every relations that I have lost, I have gained Relatives that I have never met before. I have lost grandparents, a father, a mother, aunts, uncles, and yes ... a sister. All have died, except the sister.
My oldest sister decided back in January 1992 that she wanted to be an only child. She was tired of being connected and having to share everything with her sisters. [But thats another story that I wont get into right now.]
I would like to thank all the Paris' out there who were so patient with me while I was compiling this cookbook. I was suppose to have it done for one of our September Reunions. Here I am still pounding away at the keyboard.
Thanks, Appreciation & Dedication...I would also like to express my heartfelt thanks and appreciation to all those Paris' who donated and helped with their time, recipes, photos, letters of encouragement, and contributed in any way to the publication of this "ParisTimes Pioneers Family Cookbook (What's Cookin')" of delicious delicacies.
A very special thanks goes out to the memory of all "Past Personable Paris' Chefs." I dedicate this book to them all. May the good memories of the Paris' before us live on through their recipes and stories.
A special dedication goes to the memory of my mother, Vada Eileen Paris-McGill for all the trials and tribulations that she might have gone through in her lifetime, May we remember her for the good times, memories and smells that filled our home during the holidays.
I can only imagine all the delicious aromas that might have filled her life as a young girl in a family of Scots, Irish, French, Dutch and Bohemians. My mother never talked that much of her background. So I piece together what I can find. I have found allot of good connections out here on the cyber-highway. I thank you all for making that connection with me. ------- Thank-You!
What I do know is that Vada was the oldest daughter, the fourth child of nine siblings. There were six boys and three girls. Being the oldest daughter, Vada was like a mother to the younger siblings. There was Leslie, Alvin, Vernon, Vada, Zella, Kenneth, Sam, Geneva, and Ernest Jr (EJ).
Special Ingredients Makes Generations
It has given me the ingredients for my survival so that I may continue to grow and overcome the obstacles that get put in the paths that I choose to take now or later. Besides giving me the ability to survive, it has given me something to pass on to my children. The legacy and the experiences that we have accumulated over the past years will be etched in our lives and minds as ancient family folklore that we may pass down to our future generations as a footnote on 'How to Survive'. Enabling the next generation to have what it takes to make the best of what Life has to offer them.
Let Us RememberLet us get back to the smells that filled the Holidays. The fresh bake breads, the cinnamon rolls, the home made pies, the home made noodles, and other fresh bake delicacies coming from our Grandmothers' kitchens.
You can find most of those recipes in this cookbook. I have yet to master my mothers melt in your mouth pie crusts. I have included her recipe in this book. Maybe someday I will get the technique down to the art my Grandmother, Auntie Jim, Aunt Geneva, and My Mother had developed.
The pleasant memories that those aromatic smells bring to mind will remain with me throughout my life. I hope this book will help preserve those memories for you, also.