Family Food Traditions

What are your favorite family food traditions?

Making your own root-beer? Green-eggs and ham on Saint Patty's? Making Sour Cream and Onion Potato Latkes for all the neighbors during Chanukah?

Visiting the same bric-a-brac diner to celebrate all family birthdays?

You may think that something as simple as, let's say, visiting the same diner time and again with your family, isn't all too important in the long run. But remember, these traditions are as much a part of you as are those blueberry pancakes in your stomach. These traditions become a vehicle for transmitting your culture. Sometimes even your family identity.

This week's episode of The Generations Project features some awesome Italian Food. Deanna, star of this week's episode tries to find a connection with her great-grandparents who were killed in a fire decades before she was born. She honors their legacy by preserving the beloved family recipe - pasta con sarde. (Watch her make it.)

What food traditions did your parents institute? Which will you continue with your family? Which have you stopped carrying on? And how has having family food traditions made you feel like you were connecting with your culture or family?

Lastly, how much do you love authentic Italian pasta?

Pasta Con Sarde

1) Finely chop two medium sized onions.
2) Mince 2 cloves of garlic.
3) Sauté the onion and garlic in olive oil in a sauce pan over medium heat until translucent.
4) Add in one head of fennel, chopped medium.
5) Sauté fennel until translucent.
6) Add one flat tin of sardines.
7) Stir into paste.
8) Separately, boil pasta until al dente (be sure to salt the
water with a big pinch of salt).
9) Chop 1/2 cup of fresh parsley
10) Combine the sautéed paste with the pasta in a bowl.
11) Throw in chopped parsley, toss all together until it is
fully combined.
12) Serve and enjoy

13) And tell us what you thought of it.


Stephanie | April 28, 2010 at 3:48 PM

My dad keeps telling me about how my GGrandmother made Pasta Fazule (spelling??) every Sunday for dinner for the entire family. The kicker....we aren't even remotely Italian. I am guessing she learned it from a neighbor, while living in the tenament buildings in Stamford, Ct. I think I found a recipe similar to hers, and going to try making it for my dad.

My favorites handed down: Chocolate Cream Pie, Custard Pie, Ice Box Cake, and Sour Cream Coffee Cake...mmmmmmmmmm

Adrienne | April 29, 2010 at 10:27 AM

Hey Stephanie- share that recipe for Pasta Fazool! I'd love to make it.

By the way - I found spellings of "Pasta Fazool" AND "Pasta Fazul." Looks like nobody knows how to spell it!

Lindsey | April 29, 2010 at 12:42 PM

My mom's Beef Stroganoff is legendary. We used to have to beg for her to make it. Even now, that I'm living on my own, I try to make it myself and it's never as good. It's a really simple recipe but something she does always makes it taste better. My other favorite that I haven't tried to make myself is a cheesy potato bake, which she always makes on Christmas Eve.

shady lady | May 1, 2010 at 7:24 PM

I have a salsa recipe from my Grandma June. It is AWSOME (my mouth is watering as I type this.) She is from swedish descent, but lived in Arizona for quite a while. I think that is where she got the recipe. I don't remember her making it too much, but I sure do. I am known for the recipe that she passed down to me. Thanks Grandma! She was rumored to make killer meatloaf.

Anonymous | May 4, 2010 at 12:06 PM

You know what makes my mouth water? Potatoes!

Alison | May 5, 2010 at 1:44 PM

Ah! I want all these recipes! Sour Cream Coffee cake! YUM.

Amber | May 17, 2010 at 6:15 PM

On my mother's side there is Austrian and Italian. Grandmother is 100% Austrian, Grandpa is 100% Italian. But every Christmas day we would all get together and eat all day long. We HAD to have rigatoni. After my mother passed, I got married and my aunts insisted that I have Rigatoni on the buffet table at my wedding reception. Of course I couldn't say no.

Peggy 6324 | May 20, 2010 at 8:37 PM

My wonderful step father (married my mom who was widowed with 7 kids still at home) tried to make root beer in stead of buying sodas all the time. They had a basement under the house and all the bottles exploded one night sounded like gun fire. They exploded over the next week or so and you couldn't go in the basement until it was done! Funny as all get out. Miss him very much.

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