Joe’s parents, Peter and Hannah, lived in a dugout before building this house featured with this blog. (A larger home was built on their farm before I was born, so I was never in the original home.)
We were frequent visitors to Joe and Aunt Julia Olson’s house when I was growing up, and she always offered “lunch” to us. Forenoon lunch or afternoon lunch was on either side of “dinner”, the noon meal. “Supper” was the evening meal.
I remember where she kept her store bought coconut bar cookies in the cupboard on the north wall of her kitchen. Although she was well known for her baking, I don’t know if she thought these cookies were a better treat, or it was her reserve stash to use as backup if her own cookie jar was empty.
My favorite treat made by Aunt Julia was actually her potato rolls. If my memory serves me right, she saved mashed potatoes from the Sunday meal and used them to make the rolls on Monday. It’s been a long time since I made them, but I can still smell and taste them right out of the oven.
Maybe it’s time I make a batch myself. Here’s the recipe if you’d like to try them. This is out of my book Egg Gravy: Authentic Recipes from the Butter in the Well Series.
1 cup flour
½ cup sugar (scant)
1 cup mashed potatoes
salt to taste
¾ cup lard
½ cup lukewarm water
1 cup sweet milk
1 yeast cake
2 eggs, well beaten
Mix all ingredients, adding flour and yeast (mixed with water) last. Set to rise for two hours in a warm place, add 5 to 6 cups flour. Let rise again, mold into rolls, rise again, and bake in moderate oven. (Note there is no oven temperature or baking time in the recipe as women knew their wood oven.)
If you try the recipe, please let me know what you thought of Julia’s rolls. You’ll be eating a bit of pioneer cooking…