I texted Kristin a few days before her birthday to ask her what her favorite meal is. It's a tradition in our family that you have your favorite meal on your birthday and your name day. She said any kind of pasta would suit her fine. Kristin is a vegetarian, but that's not a problem. I was a vegetarian for a long time and I have lots of well-loved recipes that don't rely on meat. I also have six men living in this house and they don't think it's dinner unless there's meat. Every Friday, no matter what the meal, Stephen always tells me it would be better if we added hamburger.
Kristin is already an accomplished cook, but I want to share family recipes with her, becuase our family does a lot of gathering in the kitchen and she fits right in there. So I pulled out Aunt Lisette's Manicotti recipe, knowing I could make a meat sauce for the boys and top Kristin's with Marinara. I handed the well-loved, very worn recipe card to Kristin.
"Well," she said dubiously, "as long as you can read it."
I could read it (mostly because I already knew what it said). But I saw her point. And I just happened to have a solution.
Kristin's birthday present from us was a copy of Homemade Recipes, a scrapbook style binder for recording family favorites. It's a beautiful book that I know I've mentioned previously. Actually, I have one for myself. And one for each of my girls. We gave one to Mary Beth's buddy, Bailey. And there's one here I promised to Hilary. There might be a few more. You know, in case another sweet girl comes along who wants to cook with us.
I had started a pot of meat sauce earlier in the day. When Kristin arrived, we mixed filling and made batter for homemade noodles. After letting the batter sit for about half an hour, Kristin cooked the crepe style noodles and Katie filled. I copied the recipe onto a new page. I kept Aunt Lisette's card. Can't really bear to part with it.
For you, though, the fresh recipe page.
And a few pictures of the what is really the most amazing pasta, ever. Michael asked if I was going to try it with rice flour. Nope. I just can't bring myself to be bummed. There's no substitute. I can't eat this version, but I'm not going to let the recipe die altogether. I can cook it for everyone else. And now Kristin can, too.