By Gloria Pitzer, as seen in… The Secret Restaurant Recipes Book (National Homemakers Newsletter, Pearl Beach, MI; Jan. 1977, p. 31).

This is one recipe not often included in the general crop of cookbooks out today. [1977]


4 cups all-purpose flour

2 tsp salt

1 pkg. (2/3-oz) compressed yeast or 1 TB dry yeast

1 cup lukewarm potato water, or scalded milk

2 eggs, separated

3 TB sugar

3 TB oil

3-qt boiling water

1 tsp cold water

Poppy/Sesame seeds & coarse salt


Sift flour and salt together, saving ½ cup of flour for kneading board. Soften yeast (or sprinkle in the dry yeast) in half of the potato water. Stir into flour. Reserve 1 TB of egg yolk in a cup and [whisk] remaining eggs, lightly. Add sugar, eggs, and oil to remaining potato water and blend with flour mixture. [Mix] to form a dough, adding more flour if necessary to make it fairly firm.

Flour hands and turn dough out onto lightly floured board. Knead until smooth and elastic (5-10 minutes). Place in a buttered or oiled bowl, cover and let rise at room temperature until doubled in bulk (about 1 ½ hours).

Preheat oven to 425°F. Punch down the dough and knead again until all air is pressed out and dough is smooth. Pull off pieces of dough [creating about 15 pieces] and roll into ropes about 7 inches long and ¾-inch thick. Coil rope to make a ring, moistening ends and overlapping them; squeeze slightly to seal. Let stand for 10 minutes.

Slide a few at a time into the hot water (do not overlap). Turn after 1 minute and remove with a slotted spoon after 1 more minute. (CAUTION: They will be very slippery.) Mix [reserved] egg yolk with the cold water and brush tops of bagels with the mixture.

Place bagels on oiled cookie sheets and, if desired, sprinkle with salt, poppy seeds, or sesame seeds. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden. Makes about 15 bagels.


See also…

Mondays & Memories of My Mom – Happy Monday



By Gloria Pitzer, as seen in… Gloria Pitzer’s Cookbook – The Best of the Recipe Detective (Balboa Press; Jan. 2018, p. 66). [A revised reprint of Gloria Pitzer’s Better Cookery Cookbook (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; May 1983, 3rd Edition).]

THE SECRET TO A GOOD CONEY SAUCE is simple – brown and crumble the beef; then put half of it through the blender with just enough water to cover the blades until it’s the consistency of cement mortar, mixing back in to the other half. Jack McCarthy of Detroit’s Channel 7 (WXYZ-TV) confessed to me that this was the secret to good, authentic Greek Coney Sauce, when he came to our home on Christmas Eve [1977] to do a film about us. Apparently, Jack’s a gourmet cook! When he traveled, he’d take a lot of kidding about carrying, with him…a crepe pan in a tennis racket cover.

Don’t be over-whelmed by the number of ingredients! It’s an everything-in-one-kettle dish, that can’t go wrong!


2 ½ to 3 pounds ground chuck

2 teaspoons cumin powder

a few grains of cayenne pepper

½ teaspoon black pepper

1 teaspoon crushed oregano leaves

3 tablespoons beef bouillon powder

6-ounce can tomato paste

3 cups hot, strong black tea

1 envelope onion soup mix

1 tablespoon chili powder

1 teaspoon paprika

½ teaspoon garlic salt

3 tablespoons packed brown sugar

1 cup ketchup

6-ounce can V-8 Juice

½ teaspoon Kitchen Bouquet


Brown the chuck in a large skillet (when using lean beef, brown in a few tablespoons of oil), mashing it with the back of a fork over medium-high heat until all the pink disappears. Cover the blades of your blender with about 1/3 cup water, then put half of the browned beef in and blend on high speed with an on/off agitation until smooth.

Return this to the skillet to mix with the rest of the browned beef. Stir in cumin powder, peppers, oregano, bouillon, tomato paste and hot tea. Turn off heat and transfer everything to a 2 ½-quart saucepan, then add remaining ingredients.

Cook and stir frequently over medium heat until piping hot. Spoon mixture over grilled hot dogs in buns – or just into plain buns with plenty of diced onions on each serving. Leftovers will keep up to 2 weeks in refrigerator. Freeze mixture up to 6 months. Makes 8 to 10 servings.

FOR A GREAT CHILI [variation] – to the above recipe, add 3 cans (1 pound each) red chili beans in chili gravy and double the amount of chili powder.


See also…

Mondays & Memories of My Mom – Junk Food



By Gloria Pitzer, as seen in… The Secret Restaurant Recipes Book (National Homemakers Newsletter, Pearl Beach, MI; Jan. 1977, p. 11).


2 eggs, beaten

1 cup dark corn syrup

1/3 tsp salt

1 tsp vanilla

1 cup sugar

2 TB melted butter or margarine

1 cup pecan meats

1 unbaked, 9-inch pie shell


Mix ingredients [as listed and] pour into unbaked pie shell. Bake in hot oven (400°F) 35 to 40 minutes, until [sharp] knife inserted in center comes out clean.


See also…

Mondays & Memories of My Mom – Michigan Summertime

Mondays & Memories of My Mom – Hunting For Happiness

Thank God Its Monday and, as such, #HappyMonday to everyone! I personally look forward to all Mondays because they’re my 52 Chances a year, in which I get to share Memories of My Mom with you!



Since yesterday began the third week of January, this week is observing National Hunt for Happiness Week! For over 20 years, people have celebrated this through many kinds of activities. After all, happiness is as diverse as the people who seek it. Where do you find happiness?

Mom used to tell me, whenever I was feeling overwhelmed and frustrated about all of the tough challenges I was facing, in life, that happiness could not found in what I think I want or in the stuff I attain; but, rather, in who I am, personally. Mom would insist that true happiness came from within us – all of us.

It is not about the things you have in life. The journey through and what you learn from life is what counts. In other words, it’s the trek that matters the most. Sadly, there are still those who truly believe that their level of happiness is in direct proportion to their level of success and financial worth.

Nevertheless, “success levels” (if such things can really be measured) have no real correlation with how many things nor how much money one acquires. If you’re hunting for happiness through money and things, you may find false hope, but you’ll never find true happiness.

Happiness is a state of thought. It begins with gratitude for all we’ve already received and achieved – not with what we ‘own’ or the ‘things’… – Gloria Pitzer, as seen in Gloria Pitzer’s Secret RecipesTM  Newsletter, Issue #218 (Secret RecipesTM, Marysville, MI; Nov. 2000, p. 5)


As seen in…

Gloria Pitzer’s Reliable Recipes For Reluctant Cooks (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; Oct. 1983, p.10)


HAVING A GOOD ATTITUDE toward cooking, is the most positive way to approach the experience. Some folks really LOVE to cook, and they consequently do it well. But many of them can only turn out a handful of dishes perfectly and, therefore, limit their cooking practices, as well as their opportunities to eat foods that are unfamiliar to them.

Cooking is one of those skills that improve with practice, as does anything we undertake. But most of us are so conditioned to living in a world of instants that if a dish requires more of us than to add water – or to defrost and heat – we’re at a total loss in the kitchen!

Our life styles are changing more and more each day. We’re living in the age of fast food, instant coffee, Minute Rice, … one-step floor cleaners, quick breads, split-second decisions, rapid transit travel and planes that go 700-MPH – so why shouldn’t cooking be hurried along as well?

When you don’t really like to cook, it’s hard to imagine that it does have a positive side to the experience. Gourmets live to cook, while the rest of us cook to live – and just as often, would prefer it if we didn’t have to cook at all. This attitude toward getting the whole thing over with as soon as we can, is a reflection of the pride we fail to take in our accomplished dishes.

When you thrive on compliments for your culinary skills, it’s different. When you do not have a positive interest in good cooking practices, you, likewise, don’t expect your creations to warrant compliments.

The best thing for you to do is start ‘small’ – working with only a few ingredients at a time, until you get the feeling of how certain foods go well together, what flavorings compliment them, the best way to present the food when you serve it, so that it looks even better than it will taste.

Long, complicated recipes that require numerous ingredients and pampering are not always as good as those dishes that require only a few ingredients and a short time to prepare. We have made the mistake of believing that ‘fast’ food is totally without merit, therefore cannot be wholesome, nutritious, nor worth the time and cost, but ‘fast’ can be good if it is properly prepared.

‘Happiness is a habit cultivate it!’ Elbert Hubbard

Happiness is not a commodity that can be bought, sold, and/or traded. True happiness comes from deep within us and is totally free! According to a study, conducted over a decade ago that still rings true, happiness is contagious. The study indicated that when one person is happy, the effect can spread up to three degrees in a social network; thereby, reaching family and friends, as well as the family and friends of your family and friends.

Mom had a way of spreading happiness, through her food-for-thought writings and copycat recipes, as well as her comedic cartoon panels. She had a contagious sense of humor and happiness about her that appealed to the media masses, which continually requested interviews with her, for four decades! When she wasn’t writing, Mom found her “happy place” in radio, mostly.

I find happiness in things like the Michigan fall colors, the happy-go-lucky smile of my grandson, the nuzzles and purrs from my cats (and my husband), the sun sparkling on the magnificent blue waters of The Great Lakes, the cheerful sounds of the birds and other wildlife in my backyard, and the aroma of a slow-cooker – with a simmering, Sunday stew – things that don’t have a price tag attached them!


Excerpts by Gloria Pitzer, as seen in…

This is not a Cook Book – It’s Gloria Pitzer’s Food for Thought (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; Oct. 1986, pp. 7-8)


THE HAPPIEST LITTLE ESCAPES in our lives can be, to us, what the spout is to a tea kettle that is up to its neck in hot water! It can give us an outlet for letting off steam – in a nice way! Everyone, who has their own little escape from the harsh realities of everyday life, seems to fare better than those who have absolutely nothing to which to escape.

I escape to a good book that will make me smile – or better yet, laugh right out loud, like George Burns has written. I escape to crocheting and good music, to long walks and long drives in our motor home, with my husband. There are so many lovely little escapes that each of us can choose that it’s a wonder more of us who seem to suffer from unreasonable burdens and false responsibilities, don’t seek out their retreats more often. It helps! (p. 7)

‘GOOD CHEER IS something much more than faith in the future, it is gratitude for the past and joy in the present! – Gloria Pitzer


I WASN’T KIDDING WHEN I said I envied happy people more than I did wealthy or famous people. From what I’ve read and what the rich and famous have said in filmed interviews, not too many of them are really happy with their wealth and their fame.

John Luther said that ‘happiness is not a matter of good fortune or worldly possessions. It’s a mental attitude. It comes from appreciating what we have, instead of being miserable about what we don’t have. It’s so simple – yet so hard for the human mind to comprehend.’ I agree! (p. 8)

‘If true happiness is acquired through persistence and patience, it would be like the fable of the elderly Chinese profit who asked for a needle when none could be found. However, somebody offered him a crowbar and a file. He was pleased and assured his friends that it was only a matter of time before he could produce the needle he wanted.’ – Gloria Pitzer [As seen in… Gloria Pitzer’s Cookbook – The Best of the Recipe Detective (Balboa Press; January 2018, p. 304)]


As seen in…

This is not a Cook Book – It’s Gloria Pitzer’s Food for Thought (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; Oct. 1986, p. 20)


LIVING ONE DAY at a time is one of the best recipes for happiness and for achievements of great value. Don’t worry needlessly about the future! It only uses up your energies that you surely need for the day at hand. Just remember that every day will hold good and bad, pleasure and a little suffering, too; a lot of joy and sometimes some pain, but don’t ever forget that these are the ingredients for making life either delicious or disastrous!

Grasp the good. Deal with the bad! Remember the pleasure. Forget the suffering as soon as you can. Hold onto the joy. Don’t let the pain get the best of you! When the pain leaves, don’t look back on it again. Taste the delicious flavors of the world around you! offers 25 daily habits that can make you feel happy, in a wonderfully informative article written by Ann Pietrangelo (Jan. 15, 2019). Some of the habits mentioned in Ann’s article I’ve also found to be popular on many other “lists”, covering the subject of “achieving happiness”.


In honor of January, being National Soup Month, here is Mom’s copycat recipe for “Out Front Walk Around Soup” ; as seen on her 2002-2004 free recipe samples and information sheet.


P.S. Food-for-thought until we meet again, next Monday…


January observes, among other things… National Blood Donor Month, National Hobby Month, National Hot Tea Month, National Mentoring Month, National Oatmeal Month, National Slow Cooking Month, and National Sunday Supper Month!

Since yesterday was the start of the third week of January, this week is also celebrating… World Kiwanis Week, National Healthy Weight Week, and National Fresh Squeezed Juice Week!

Today is also… National Fig Newton Day, National Nothing Day, and National Religious Freedom Day! Plus, as the third Monday in January (2023), it’s also… Martin Luther King Jr. Day!  Additionally (for 2023), it’s the start of… National No Name-Calling Week, which always starts on the third Monday of January and runs through that Friday.

January 17th is… National Bootlegger’s Day and National Hot Buttered Rum Day!

January 18th is… National Michigan Day, National Peking Duck Day, National Thesaurus Day, and National Winnie The Pooh Day!

January 19th is… World Quark Day and National Popcorn Day! Plus, as the third Thursday of the first quarter (for 2023), it’s also… Get to Know Your Customers Day!

January 20th is… National Buttercrunch Day and National Cheese Lover’s Day! In honor of the latter, here is Mom’s secret recipe for “Fox And Hounds’ Cheese Torte”, as seen in her self-published cookbook, The Original 200 Plus Secret Recipes© Book (Secret RecipesTM, Marysville, MI; June 1997, p. 15)



January 21st is… National Granola Bar Day, National Hugging Day, and Squirrel Appreciation Day! Plus, as the third Saturday in January (2023), it’s also… National Use Your Gift Card Day!

January  22nd is… National Blonde Brownie Day and Celebration of Life Day! Plus, as the start of the fourth week of January, it’s also… Tax Identity Theft Week!


…3 down and 49 to go!

Mondays & Memories of My Mom – It All Starts Somewhere

Thank God Its Monday and, as such, #HappyMonday to everyone! I personally look forward to all Mondays because they’re my 52 Chances a year, in which I get to share Memories of My Mom with you!




January celebrates, among other things, National Hobby Month and National Mentoring Month! A very popular New Year’s resolution is to start a new hobby. In fact, that was listed as #4 by a report from, called the Top 10 Most Common New Year’s Resolutions… (Dec. 30, 2021) – for 2022. It all starts somewhere!

Mom’s original writing ambitions began when she was a young girl, influenced by a movie about the Bronte sisters. Like others, Mom wanted to write a great American novel. “The best laid plans…” comes to mind. Nonetheless, Mom believed that Devine Intervention detoured her to write about other things, while never steering her away from writing, itself.

Every success Mom had in writing, as a girl and young adult, was usually centered around cooking and homemaking – from the many essay contests that she entered and won to her multiple careers in the newspaper field, writing and syndicating her own columns and cartoon panels; followed by writing and publishing her own newsletter, cookbooks and food-for-thought books.



Gloria Pitzer’s Cookbook – The Best of the Recipe Detective (Balboa Press; Jan. 2018, p. 6)

[A revised reprint of Gloria Pitzer’s Better Cookery Cookbook (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; May 1983, 3rd Edition)]


I DO, WITH RECIPES, what rich little does with voices! Imitating the ‘Secret Recipes’ of the food industry has been an exciting experience for me. The critics felt that ‘fast foods’ and restaurant dishes were not worth the effort to duplicate at home, when you can just as easily buy the products already prepared!

The critics who contend that ‘fast foods’ are ‘junk foods’ and not good for us, have probably never prepared these foods themselves. Certainly, they have no access to the closely guarded recipes from the food companies that created these dishes, as there are only a few people in each operation that are permitted the privilege of such information! So, 99% of the critics’ speculations are based on their own opinions.

To know what these dishes contained, they’d have to be better chemists than I, as I have tested over 20,000 recipes with only the finished product as my guide to determine what each contained. ‘Fast foods’ are not ‘junk foods’ unless they’re not properly prepared. Any food that is poorly prepared (and just as badly presented) is junk!

Unfortunately, ‘fast food’ has carried a reputation, by default, of containing ingredients that are ‘harmful’ to us. Yet, they contain the same ingredients as those foods served in the ‘finer’ restaurants with wine stewards, linen tablecloths, candlelight, coat-check attendants, and parking valets; which separate the plastic palaces of ‘fast food’ from the expensive dining establishments.

One ‘eats’ at McDonald’s, but ‘dines’ at The Four Seasons. Steak and potato or hamburger and French fries – the ingredients are practically the same. How they are prepared makes the difference!

In the early 1970s, I was trying to juggle marriage, motherhood, homemaking and a newspaper column syndicated through Columbia Features, when it seemed obvious to me that there wasn’t a single cookbook on the market that could help me take the monotony out of mealtime. There was not a single recipe in the newspaper’s food section that did not smack of down-home dullness!

‘Okay,’ they said at the newspaper I worked for, ‘YOU write the column on foods and recipes that YOU think would really excite the readers and make them happy!’ I did, but that didn’t make the Editors happy, because it made their [food industry] advertisers miserable.

When I was told that I’d have to go back to monotonous meatloaf and uninteresting side-dishes that made mealtime a ritual rather than a celebration or pick up my check, I told them to ‘MAIL it to me!’ I went home to start my own paper!

It was probably a dumb thing to do, amid an economic recession with the highest rate of unemployment I had ever experienced, but it was worth the risk. I was a dedicated writer that new someone had to give homemakers something more than what they were being given in the colored glossy magazines, where a bowl of library paste could even be photographed to look appetizing!

…THEY LAUGHED! THEY DOUBTED! They even tried to take me to court when some famous food companies insisted that I stop giving away their secrets. They couldn’t believe me when I said that I did NOT know, nor did I want to know, what they put in their so-called secret recipes.

I did know that there are very few recipes that can’t be duplicated or imitated at home. And we could do them for much less than purchasing the original product. I proved…it can be and should be done!

FAMOUS FOODS FROM FAMOUS PLACES have intrigued good cooks for a long time… There is speculation among the critics as to the virtues of re-creating, at home, the foods that you can buy ‘eating out’, such as the fast food fares of the popular franchise restaurants. To each, his own! Who would want to imitate ‘fast food’ at home?

I found that over a million people who saw me demonstrate replicating some famous fast food products [the FIRST time I was] on The Phil Donahue Show (July 7, 1981) DID – and their letters poured in at a rate of over 15,000 a day for months on end!

And while I have investigated the recipes, dishes, and cooking techniques of ‘fine’ dining rooms around the world, I received more requests from people who wanted to know how to make things like McDonald’s Special Sauce or General Foods Shake-N-Bake coating mix or White Castle’s hamburgers than I received for those things like Club 21’s Coq Au Vin.

I think I inherited Mom’s love for writing (among other things) and, while I was growing up, she continuously mentored me in creative writing. Now writing has become one of my favorite hobbies, as well as a legacy of love, as I carry on her torch, telling her story in these blog posts. It all starts somewhere.

Mom was such a huge influence on who I grew to be that I feel compelled to keep her torch lit and shining bright! Her love of writing and cooking and inspiring others in the same was, to me, one of the biggest parts of her legacy. It wasn’t something she did just for our family, but for all families.

Mom always hated when “the press” referred to her as a small town housewife who turned a hobby into an occupation. Writing was never Mom’s hobby. She used to say that being a writer isn’t what she did; but, rather, who she was! She also loved to mentor others in writing, as well.


As seen in…

My Cup Runneth Over and I Can’t Find My Mop (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; Dec. 1989, p. 22)


JOURNALISM IS A PECULIAR profession to follow. I’ve been a serious journalist [since graduating high school in 1954]. I’ve worked among writers who wrote to live, while the rest of us lived to write. We had to communicate, to reach out to someone with ideas…thoughts…reasonings and remembering.

While I live to write, I must consider that others do not. Writers never retire, not if they’re truly writers. Editors may retire and reporters may retire…at some given point. But, old writers never die, they just run out of words.

I never thought I’d see the day that Mom would run out of words. I’m sure she didn’t either! But her words live on forever in print! I’ve heard from many people, since starting these blog posts in September 2018, who’ve told me that they still have their copies of Mom’s publishings and how special they are to them.

I pour through my copies of Mom’s books and newsletters all the time, as they inspire me in, both, cooking and writing! Mom was certainly my mentor in those areas. Please contact me at [email protected] or on Facebook @TheRecipeDetective with your memories of my mom! I’d love to hear from you, too!


As seen in…

My Cup Runneth Over – And I Can’t Find My Mop, (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; Dec. 1989, p. 75)


WE EMBRACE THE CHALLENGE to inspire…The care and concern that an author has for their readers is part of the pleasure of presenting interesting ideas in either an entertaining way or in an informative way. I try to balance my own presentations between the two.

When I am broadcasting over the numerous radio stations around the country, sometimes around the world, I try to lift the listener to a new height of interest and enthusiasm, and I leave the serious side of nutrition to the experts, who have the medical background to support their claims.

My hope is to present my recipes in such a way that cooking is a joy and never a job! I try to present these recipes with the same concern as I do giving a gift to a special friend. Each of our 5 children, who have grown up helping Paul and me with these recipes, have gone out into the world with this legacy of love and enthusiasm. We can only hope that they use what we have given them.



In addition to the national celebrations or observances I’ve already mentioned, as the second Monday in January (2023), today is also… National Clean Off Your Desk Day! I wanted to mention, this is NOT a day Mom would’ve celebrated or observed but I do!

By the way, getting organized was the #3 contender, according to that report I mentioned earlier, from, called the Top 10 Most Common New Year’s Resolutions… (Dec. 30, 2021).

I’m one of those weird people who like to clean and, especially, to organize! I don’t know why – it’s some OCD thing I have – but organizing is one of my favorite hobbies. I tried to surprise Mom once, when I was a teenager, by cleaning and organizing her office space. However, when it came to her desk, she preferred her own “organized mess”.


In honor of January, being National Oatmeal Month,  here is Mom’s copycat recipe for “Aunt Jenny’s Date Oat Bars”; as seen in her self-published cookbook, The Original 200 Plus Secret Recipes© Book (Secret RecipesTM, Marysville, MI; June 1997, p. 4).


P.S. Food-for-thought until we meet again, next Monday…


January also observes… National Soup Month, National Blood Donor Month, National Hot Tea Month, National Slow Cooking Month, and National Sunday Supper Month!

The second week of January celebrates… National Mocktail Week, National Folic Acid Awareness Week,  Universal Letter Writing Week and National Pizza Week, which always start on the second Sunday of January.

Today is also… National Apricot Day!

Tomorrow is… National Bittersweet Chocolate Day, National Cut Your Energy Costs Day, National Oysters Rockefeller Day, and National Save The Eagles Day! Plus, as the second Tuesday in January (2023), it’s also… Shop for Travel Day!

Wednesday, January 11th is… National Arkansas Day and National Milk Day!

Thursday, January 12th is… National Curried Chicken Day and National Marzipan Day!

Friday, January 13th is… Korean American Day, National Peach Melba Day, and National Sticker Day!

Saturday, January 14th is… National Dress Up Your Pet Day, National Hot Pastrami Sandwich Day, and National Ratification Day!

Sunday, January 15th is… National Bagel Day, National Hat Day, and National Strawberry Ice Cream Day! Plus, as the start of the third week of January, it’s also… World Kiwanis Week, Hunt for Happiness Week, National Healthy Weight Week, and National Fresh Squeezed Juice Week!


…2 down and 50 to go!

Mondays & Memories of My Mom – Making Mondays Memorable

Happy New Year! Additionally, #TGIM – Thank God Its Monday and, as such, #HappyMonday to everyone! I look forward to every Monday because it’s one of my 52 Chances each year, in which I get to share Memories of My Mom with you!



Today is so inspiring, to me because it’s National Thank God Its Monday Day – which is always the first Monday of the first Month of the new year. A lot of people bash Mondays – like the Grinch bashes Christmas – but, to me and many others, Mondays represent new beginnings, which always offer new opportunities.


As claims: “Mondays are often full of new beginnings…Not only does the observance focus on the first Monday in January, but on every Monday throughout the year.” I LOVE that! Especially since I write these blog posts, in memory of my mom, every Monday and they always energize and inspire me for the rest of my week’s workload. I can only hope they energize and inspire others, as well. suggests that we… “Stop shaming Monday and look at what Monday has to offer… 52 chances to see a beautiful sunrise… share your talents with the world… teach someone a new skill that will better their lives… of meeting new people.”

Since reading that a few years ago, I now see Mondays as my 52 chances to share memories of my mom and tell her story, over and over again; hopefully, re-inspiring someone else’s love in the kitchen, in the home and family, throughout the neighborhood and around the world. Mondays were always one of Mom’s favorite days, also.


As seen in…

My Cup Runneth Over and I Can’t Find My Mop (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; Dec. 1989, pp. 54-55)


RADIO turned out to be the most appropriate way by which we made people aware of what we were doing…my involvement with the wonderful world of radio actually came about without any specific intention of becoming a regular part of the broadcasting field…

I didn’t know I had what is considered ‘a radio voice’. Heaven knows our five kids will, to this day, even in their adulthood, testify to the fact that, on occasion, during their up-bringing, I had been known to discover conditions that would prompt me to accelerate, vocally, in a pitch that only dogs in the next county could here!

My introduction to radio began with Bob Allison and [the] ‘Ask Your Neighbor’ show. I was folding diapers at the kitchen table, waiting for my favorite daily segment of ‘My True Story’ to come on the air when, instead, WWJ [a Detroit area radio station] announced that it had been replaced with a NEW show.

This new show turned out to be the best thing that ever happened to me…almost every Monday morning I [would] visit with Bob Allison and his neighbors…


When ‘My True Story’ was replaced by Bob Allison and his ‘Ask Your Neighbor’ show… I was, at first, very disappointed. Household hints and problems around the house that you cannot solve yourself seemed like just too much homemaking information to please me.

I soon, however, became ‘hooked’ on the show, as almost everybody does, to the point that, on Fridays, when Bob would sign off and say he would talk to us again on Monday, I was spending the weekends just looking forward to the show on Monday.

I called the show about 2 or 3 times a month for the first year or two, to ask questions of Bob’s “neighbors” that my newspaper column readers were asking me. When I couldn’t find the answer from consulting other sources, I knew I could rely on Bob Allison’s ‘neighbors’ to come up with the right answers for me.

In return, I would often… phone in an answer that I occasionally had in reply to one of their questions or recipe requests. Bob did not recognize my voice as a regular caller until I had initiated the newsletter, however.

He asked me where the [hamburger sauce] recipe came from that I was giving, in reply to one of his listener’s requests, which is how his program has always worked… In mentioning that the hamburger sauce recipe would appear in the next issue of my monthly newsletter… Bob reacted with great interest and curiosity.

‘You have a newsletter, do you?’ He asked. ‘Well, tell us about it and how much it is and where our neighbors can get it.’ That was all it took to get us well-acquainted with Bob’s ‘neighbors’ and, in no time at all, our subscription orders went from a few to many.

‘Don’t count your days, make your days count!’ – source unknown


Reading more and learning something new every day have been other successful New Year’s resolutions of mine, which I continue to repeat each year. Mom instilled in me, when I was very young, the importance of knowledge and to Learn Something New Every Day! As the old adage indicates, knowledge is wealth!

There was a time when women and girls weren’t even ALLOWED to read or learn anything other than how to be a good wife and homemaker. Unfortunately, I think that’s still so in some places around the world. So even evolution, itself, is still evolving.

Over the past few years, in my own quest to Learn Something New Every Day, has been one of my favorite go-to-sources for information. Something is celebrated every day of the year even if it’s not a federal holiday and I’ve found National Day Calendar’s website to be a really great source of information about what’s being commemorated (and how) each day, every week, and in all months!

Some of January’s month-long observances include… National Blood Donor Month, National Hot Tea Month, National Mentoring Month, National Oatmeal Month, National Slow Cooking Month, National Soup Month, and National Sunday Supper Month!




Disappointingly, January’s celebrations of National Slow Cooking Month and National Sunday Supper Month, plus, this coming Friday’s National Sunday Supper Day aren’t done much in America – not even by British/Irish descendants, from where the tradition supposedly originated.

The practice of Sunday suppers has been traced back to the UK’s Renaissance Era, when families congregated after church for a large meal; with a slow-cooked pot roast, being the traditional choice. The Sunday supper gathering was where you usually learned about your family’s stories and history, traditions and beliefs.

Royal bodyguards were supposedly known as ‘beefeaters’ because of their love of eating roasted beef. This actually became the design for Beefeater restaurants, also known as The Sign of the Beef Carver restaurants. Mom imitated many dishes from them. Here’s one (below) from Mom’s self-published cookbook, Eating Out At Home (National Home News, St. Clair, MI; Sept. 1978, p. 22).


Additionally, January is also National Hobby Month. Thus, I want to re-share one of Mom’s stories (aka: memories) about her dining room table, family-based business not being a hobby. It was her profession, career, and livelihood; but it was never work – not to Mom – and certainly never a hobby!


As seen in…

My Cup Runneth Over and I Can’t Find My Mop (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; Dec. 1989, p. 53)


THERE ARE MANY RISKS involved with going into business for yourself, no matter what product or service you intend to offer. If I had thought more about the risks, than I did about the possibilities, I never would have moved an inch toward doing any of the things about which I now write. My husband is not a risk-taker. I am. We complement each other well. He still becomes uneasy and anxious about every new idea I have for another book or another project, on the basis that ‘we can’t afford it.’

I have learned, over the years, to keep many of my projects to myself until they are completed; which, in the long run, saves Paul from worrying unnecessarily about something that will very likely turn out well, and keeps me from worrying that Paul is worrying.

When I have been asked about goals or destination, it is been my feeling that every corner I turn has a new goal, a new destination awaiting us. I have never thought of any one point as being the top. Life has so many wonderful opportunities for each of us to take advantage of, that it does not seem reasonable that I should give myself the limitations that would determine just how far I should be able to go.

Because this was never a hobby, never WORK, never a job, I have had no problem with the worry or concern that accompanies a position from which one expects to retire. I would not want to give up what I have been doing [writing] since I was a child. It would be unfair to have to give up doing something that has also brought so much pleasure and good information to so many people.

It was, however, only when I realized WHAT I should be writing about and what I should be sharing with the readers – what I knew best – that things really began to happen. Of course, my husband wisely reminds me, when someone asks about writing their own cookbook, that WRITING it is the easiest part. Knowing how to SELL it is the hard part!


Back to Sunday suppers – Did you know that there’s a difference between “dinner” and “supper”, even though many people use the terms synonymously? Dinner is a large meal, usually eaten about mid-day (aka: lunch); while supper is a lighter meal, with something like soup and a sandwich, that’s eaten in the evening.

Another difference between the two terms, according to (Jun 28, 2018), is that “Supper is used especially when the meal is an informal one eaten at home, while dinner tends to be the term chosen when the meal is more formal. In some dialects and especially in British English, supper can also refer to a light meal or snack that is eaten late in the evening.”


In honor of January, being National Soup Month, here’s Mom’s copycat recipe for “Dent Knees Cheese Soup”; as seen in her self-published cookbook, The Joy Of NOT Cooking – Any More Than You Have To (Secret RecipesTM, St. Clair, MI; Nov. 1983, p. 71).


P.S. Food-for-thought until we meet again, next Monday…



The first week of January celebrates, among other things… National Diet Resolution Week, National Celebration of Life Week, and New Year’s Resolutions Week! 

Today is… National Buffet Day and National Cream Puff Day!

Tomorrow is… National Chocolate Covered Cherry Day, National Drinking Straw Day, and National Fruitcake Toss Day!

Wednesday, January 4th is… National Missouri Day, National Spaghetti Day, and National Trivia Day!

Thursday, January 5th is… National Bird Day, National Keto Day, National Screenwriters Day, and National Whipped Cream Day!

Friday, January 6th is… National Bean Day, National Cuddle Up Day, National Shortbread Day, and National Technology Day! 

Saturday, January 7th is… National Tempura Day! Plus, since it’s the first Saturday of January, it’s also… National Play Outside Day, which is the first Saturday of EVERY MONTH!

January 8th is… National Bubble Bath Day, National English Toffee Day, and National Joy-Germ Day! Plus, as the second Sunday in January (2023), it’s also… National Mocktail Week, National Folic Acid Awareness Week, Universal Letter Writing Week, and National Pizza Week (which always start on the second Sunday of January).


…1 down and 51 to go!