Growing up, I had a Grammy. She was without a doubt the coolest Grammy ever. She sewed beautiful clothes, she cooked fabulous food, and after her husband died at the age of 38, she went back to work as a teacher while raising six children. She put them all through college, and lived in her own apartment til she passed in her sleep at the age of 95.
She had a wicked sense of humor, and in spite of a lot of tragedy in her life (in addition to her husband, she buried a total of 4 of 7 children) she maintained the strongest Christian faith I have ever known. She was an amazing Grammy.
I remember being in awe when she put a beautiful Baked Alaska on the table, pouring brandy on it, and lighting it up. It only burned a second or two, but the result was a lovely brown glow on the meringue. She made a wonderful fruit salad with a vanilla syrup on it, the finest beef ever roasted, and so many other wonderful things.
I have several boxes of my sister’s things packed by her roommate when she died. I haven’t been able to really go through them yet, but I hope to find my Grammy’s recipes one day.
The thing my Grammy was most famous for was her corn chowder. It was so delicious, and if she brought you a pot full when you were sick or in need, you knew you were special to her.
When I found out how easy it was to make, I was surprised. But that doesn’t make it any less special, delicious, and heartwarming.
Melt 1 stick butter in a large pot over medium heat. When it is foaming, add 1 finely diced large white onion. Cook and stir 3-4 minutes to soften, but not brown, the onions. Add 2 cans sliced (or diced) white potatoes. Cook and stir a minute or so, and add 4 cans creamed corn. Stir that around, and stir in 1/2 gallon of half and half. Add 1t kosher salt, 1t black pepper, and 1/4t cayenne pepper. The cayenne was not present in her original recipe. I add it not for heat but flavor. Stir it around, bring to a simmer. Do not boil. Let simmer 15 to 20 minutes so everything is heated through, and serve. It keeps in the refrigerator about 3 days. But once you taste it, it won’t last that long!
That’s it! From my Grammy to me, to all of you. Enjoy!