Ruth's Genealogy

“I don't know who my grandfather was; I am much more concerned to know what his grandson will be.” -Abraham Lincoln

Family recipes are about more than just food. They provide sights, smells and memories of family history. Which family recipe are you most thankful for? Who was the first person to make it, and how was the recipe handed down through the generations? Has the recipe stayed the same all these years?

This is a bit of a difficult assignment, because I rarely-to-never cook. I just don’t. My kids are grown and out of the house, so I don’t cook. Except at Thanksgiving…

Hence, my cooking doesn’t have much of a tie-in to my family history research.

There is, however, one particular recipe that is a big favorite for me and my oldest daughter. I “originally” found the recipe in my old 1961 Betty Crocker New Picture Cook Book. (This particular version is listed new on for $500! My copy is quite well-worn, unfortunately…)

Known to Ms. Crocker as “Hot Fudge Pudding“, it is a delicious blend of fresh-out-of-the-oven fudge cake and chocolate pudding. Yummy!

Fast-forward a few years to about 2005, when I am visiting my Aunt Jan. My Aunt Jan was the world’s greatest cook, simply put! Before chronic illness caught up with her in her later years, she was always in the kitchen, it seemed.

So on this particular day of my visit, Aunt Jan brought out a bowl of chocolate stuff from her kitchen to me, saying this was one of “Daughter’s recipes”. “Daughter” was the nickname of my second great-grandmother, Sallie Hattie Lee Kennedy (1870-1960).

One bite of this chocolate stuff and it was déjà vu all over again! It was my Betty Crocker Hot Fudge Pudding! Aunt Jan brought out an old recipe book (very old) and there, also in Daughter’s very old handwriting, was “our” recipe. Who knew?

So which recipe came first: Daughter’s or Betty Crocker’s?

The world may never know… 🙂


52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2012) that invite genealogists and others to discuss resources in the genealogy community including websites, applications, libraries, archives, genealogical societies and more. You do not have to be a blogger to participate. If you do not have a genealogy blog, write down your thoughts on your computer, or simply record them on paper and keep them with your files.

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