August 25, 2009 | 23 Comments
heir·loom (ârloom) [Middle English heirlome : heir + lome, lome = implement;]
1. A valued possession passed down in a family through succeeding generations.
2. An article of personal property included in an inherited estate.
An heirloom is “passed on” to the next generation, but in its original meaning, it was part of an estate — not an outright gift from one person to another. Thus, it is an “impending” item that is passed from one generation to another, because of “heres” or “heredity.” (Source)
Some things endure the test of time. Five years after her death, and fifty years after it was first published, Julia Child‘s Mastering the Art of French Cooking has returned to the top of the bestseller lists.
Julia Child, our grandparents – and their grandparents – were sustained by a simple and sensible approach:
“Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” ~ Michael Pollan, In Defense of Food
“Food” meant just that – wholesome, natural ingredients obtained from local sources.
No canned, packaged or processed foods.
No artificial flavours, no red colour no. 32, no margarine.
With Bee’s grandparents, it also meant no refined products like white rice, all purpose flour or refined sugar.
No diet fads. They weren’t afraid of ghee or coconut. Julia Child was asked for a butter substitute. She simply said: “Cream”. After scarfing down all those egg yolks and “little pats” of dairy fat, she lived to be 92.
No fancy gadgets either – just tried-and-tested techniques executed with practice and patience. In Cooking at Home with Pedatha, when asked how long a particular dish took to cook, the chef from India said: “As long as it wants to take. Do not attempt to hurry it along.”
In short, “heirloom” refers to food left to its own devices, characterised – most often than not – by excellence, maturity, and enduring appeal. Like Julia Child’s omelette.
Mastering the Art of French Cooking has a 13-page treatise on omelettes –
(a) “smooth, gently swelling, golden oval that is tender and creamy inside.”
… MTAFC’s omelet-making directions are almost comic in their precision, but they bring great clarity to the whole operation. How much should one beat eggs before cooking? Thirty to 40 vigorous strokes with a large table fork should be sufficient. When a utensil-free omelet-rolling technique is described as difficult but “the most fun of any method,” the book offers a training regime to help you master the necessary movement: Go outside and practice tossing a cupful of dried beans in a pan until you can flip them all at once with a flick of the wrist. Then you may come back inside and make your omelet. (slate.com)
Julia Child (1912-2004)
“Yes, you guessed right .. I eat Fufu and Eru (well make that Garri) morning, afternoon, evening. Of course, I’m Banyangi ! Koki, Beignet, Haricot Bouillie, Okra/Rice (only rice), Mpahkoko/Mbangah soup, good ol’ Poisson Braise ! Yes the joys of being Cameroonian … but wait, who am I kidding… , I cry to Star-Spangled Banner, I eat a big ol’ Turkey, Baby Back Ribs, I’m as American as Apple Pie, but deep down somewhere in the Mashed Potatoes filled crevices of my innards, Cameroon lives on … I think …” ~ Banyangi Girl
This is not to suggest that our grandparents and their grandparents were immune from trends and practices that were quirky or dated. Think over-sweet, rich desserts like jellied Bavarian creams. Or those made with ingredients that make one queasy or question their wider implications – like kharwas/geen/posu (Indian creme brulee made with colostrum). Some are seriously gross – like aspic. There’s a reason why they aren’t made often these days, or tweaked using substitutes. Those are equally interesting to learn about.
In the context of Monthly Mingle and CLICK,
HEIRLOOM could stand for
A cherished old-time recipe – like this thousand-year old jackfruit curry from south India (Chakka Madhura Curry)
Or a not-so-cherished one. Jello salads, anyone?
A valued or unique possession from another era (Vintage Jello Molds)
A cultivar of a vegetable or fruit that is open-pollinated and is not grown widely for commercial purposes – one that usually has superior flavor or unique coloration. (Peruvian Purple potatoes)
Whatever you portray must have a CLEAR CULINARY ASSOCIATION.
The rules are the same for both events and you need to send only one entry for both. Please note, though:
- the two events have different deadlines.
- MM is for bloggers only, CLICK is also for non-bloggers.
- MM needs a post, CLICK does not.
- MM has a prize (the CLICK winner gets a badge and bragging rights).
Send us your entry. Family stories make the most valuable heirlooms. Tell us the story or snippet of history behind the heirloom – it could be your heritage or someone else’s.
1. Use the regular CLICK ENTRY FORM.
2. Send in a picture 550 pixels wide if you have one.
3. Entries should be linked to this post AND the Monthly Mingle page @ What’s for Lunch, Honey. Feel free to use the MM logo at the top of this post.
4. Send in your entry before September 20, 2009, 10 p.m., Eastern Standard Time. The roundup will be posted before September 22, 2009.
All MONTHLY MINGLE entries received by the September 20 deadline will be automatically entered for CLICK.
While MM entries are usually not permitted to be used for other events, this month, we make an exception. In addition to Monthly Mingle and CLICK, you may send in the same entry to one other event, if you wish.
Our favourite post gets a prize, shipped wordwide:
Simple Essentials: Fruit by Donna Hay.
CLICK is a monthly food photography event. It is a theme-based contest. You do not need a blog to participate. Each month, entries will be invited based on a culinary ingredient or concept. More about it HERE.
Send us your entry.
1. Picture necessary, post not necessary. Non-bloggers welcome.
2. Use the regular CLICK ENTRY FORM.
3. Picture size: 550 pixels wide.
4. Entries should be linked to this post.
Do you have a picture that has already appeared on your site? Send it in using the entry form after you have added a link to THIS event accouncement.
5. Send in your entry before September 30, 2009, 10 p.m., Eastern Standard Time.
6. Your entry will also be automatically used for Monthly Mingle if
- it comes in before September 20, 2009, 10 p.m., Eastern Standard Time,
- you are a blogger and your pic is accompanied by a post.
- your post also links to Monthly Mingle page @ What’s for Lunch, Honey.
All entries received between September 21 and 30, 2009, or those not linking to Meeta’s Monthly Mingle page will be used exclusively for CLICK.
The entries will be posted as they arrive. They can be accessed HERE or through the ‘CLICK‘ icon on the right sidebar.
Get monthly announcements and roundups through the
Meeta of What’s For Lunch, Honey?
Snjezana of Dalmacija Down Under
Syrie of Taste Buddies
Fanny of foodbeam
Jai of Jugalbandi
FIVE GUARANTEED WAYS TO PISS THEM OFF
1. Make them wonder how your picture is related to the theme.
2. Stitch two or three pics together to make a diptych or triptych.
3. Add big borders, text or a dateline. Don’t. Please don’t.
4. Have them use their imagination to excavate your picture from beneath a giant copyright notice.
5. Add anything that distracts from the image.
(available for a month)
(By taking part in this event, participants accept that the pictures submitted to Jugalbandi.info have been taken by them, and do not infringe upon the proprietary rights, including but not limited to the copyright, of any third party. If challenged, the responsibility to prove the ownership of the picture, as well as all attendant liabilities rest with the participant.
Pictures that have pornographic content or are not family friendly will not be accepted.)
Thank you for your support and participation.
- – Jai and Bee