Everybody's family has that one signature dish or recipe that is unique to them and no one else knows how to make.
This particular writer's grandmother bakes a mean Mississippi Mud Pie.
Noone knows how she actually makes it and nobody dares to ask.
It was the same situation for Krista D. Ball from Alberta, Canada.
She wanted to learn how to bake her mother's crunchy homemade bread.
Her mother is now in her eighties and can't bake anymore and despite trying to perfect it since the 00s, Krista hasn't been able to get it right.
She finally decided that she wanted to get to the bottom of what made the bread so amazing and went straight to the source of its creation.
However, shortly after asking her mother how the bread was made she realised that there wasn't any methods or measurements involved at all.
Krista documented the conversation on her Twitter account and it is a hilarious and heartwarming read that everyone will be able to relate to.
Fortunately for Krista, her tribulations did not go without reward.
With the help of our sister-in-law and her late mother's recipe book, she has managed to devise a rough working recipe for the bread which she shared on CBC:
2 tbsp yeast (?)
½ tsp salt
2 tsp sugar
3+ cups water
8+ cups flour
¼ cup shortening, melted (too much?)
Butter (not enough?)
1. Add yeast, sugar, and 1 cup of warm water together. Mix the yeast sponge with some flour. Add shortening, and alternate flour and water until it forms a ball.
2. Use the STIR setting on the mixer (sorry, Mom). Add water and flour as needed. (Measure?)
3. Rise for a time. Punch down. Form into three buns per greased pan. Smear with warm butter or maybe the shortening. Cover and rise again.
4. Bake in a preheated 350-degree oven until done. Coat with more butter. Cut off a piece for yourself to make sure it's okay. Let cool for everyone else.
5. Maybe baking without an actual recipe is a genetic thing...
6. The result!
Speaking to indy100 Krista explained why she shared the exchange on social media and why it's important to keep these old traditions alive in the 21 century.
I worry about the knowledge that will be loss once my parents' generation has passed.
Asking Mom to relive her baking days was a chance to reconnect with those memories and knowledge.
I encourage everyone to call their Nans and ask for their special recipes.