|My mother, Winnie Latimer|
For most of us, the holidays are enriched by family traditions sometimes established by someone who’s no longer with us. But a custom doesn’t magically pass from one generation to another. Instead, it endures when someone younger embraces it and shares it with those they love.
For my daughter and me, one such tradition is preparing my mother’s cornbread dressing during the holidays. No turkey is complete without Grandma’s dressing.
|Terry, Maria and me with Mom and Dad, back when
we were getting our first lessons in dressing making.
The last time Maria and I made this holiday staple, I realized the conversation surrounding its preparation had become a tradition in itself. Each year, if you joined us in the kitchen, you’d hear a variation of the following:
“For the dressing. Grandma always added a couple of biscuits and rolls to the cornbread.”
Later, I crumble the rolls, biscuits and cornbread into my biggest bowl and ask, “Did Grandma put eggs in her dressing?”
“I’ll leave them out.”
Then I cautiously add salt, pepper, poultry seasoning and sage, frequently stopping to taste. It’s easier to add more than to deal with too much.
“I’m leaving that up to you,” Maria says.
Somewhere in what I hope will be the distant future, I hear a similar conversation going on between Maria and her girls. After all, it wouldn’t be Thanksgiving and Christmas without Grandma’s Cornbread Dressing.
|Maria and her girls, Caroline and Emily