In This House

My grandmother was born in Mexico on October 13, 1910. She was born at a time of strife in Puebla, so much so, that when she was three years old, the family had to flee the country in the middle of the night, smuggled out by train into the United States, arriving in San Antonio.

Through my grandmother, I learned about grace, kindness, compassion, undeniable strength, and about the ritual of preparing food with love. If you watch anyone in my family cook, even the men, especially, my father or brothers, you can see the care and attention to detail. The process of preparing a meal is a thoughtful experience. A meal is an offering of love and honor for the person who is on the receiving end of the plate. In my family, when we place a dish of food in front of you, it is a gift of sorts.

My grandmother lived in a Spanish style home, bright white with red terracotta tiles on the roof, and wrought iron banisters and window coverings. The house looked monumental to my young eyes, the driveway seemed long and steep and the house appeared huge sitting up on the hill, but it was the smell of my grandmother’s pantry, filled with dried chilies and rice, the ever present pot of pinto beans simmering on the hot stove, and the tortillas that she made fresh daily, that stayed with me through the years and inspired my infatuation with the culinary arts.

I moved to San Antonio, into my grandmother’s home, in 2008. I arrived alone, with only my dog in tow, in the midst of the scorching hot and humid summer, wondering what had possessed me to leave a good job and the breezy beaches of California. How could I explain my need to drop out of my current life and rediscover myself in a dilapidated home, long emptied of my grandmother’s physical presence, but inhabited by her spirit and the lingering smells that spoke to my soul?

There is no explanation or excuses, only the adventure and challenge of a lifetime, rich with new friendships, love, and of course, food!

Here I will share with you my stories, recipes, and my love of aesthetics and good taste. I hope you enjoy my tales and toss in a few of your own!

One comment

  1. Betty Dickerson

    I have a funny story for you…each year our Rotary clubs host students from foreign country’s. One year we hosted a couple from Germany. I could not wait to serve them my German pancakes, a recipe i found in a cookbook and my family loves. (aka Dutch Baby Pancake) i proudly served them announcing I wanted to serve them something from their home country to make them feel at home…to my dismay they had never heard or eaten them before. We all had a good laugh as they enjoyed their breakfast. Where ever the pancakes came from they are truly a wonderful treat.

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