Cookin' With Leo
Way back when, whenever. Saturdays used to be fun days for Grandpa and me and Dad while he was still alive. On Saturdays Grandma and Mom were busy with such things as shopping, or getting ready for Sunday dinner, in the event family or friends were showing up. Or they may have been baking some coffee cake or other such goodies as may please all the Sunday visitors. Meanwhile gramps and dad and me would set up a new batch of home brew that was an ongoing every Saturday event. Or in season we would see to the wine making. That too was a fun event back in the days of prohibition. And of course when my daddy was still alive he would make his weekly supply of 'bathtub gin'.
Well now, grandma and mom never paid too much attention to these manly antics. We were more or less on our own as to what happened on Saturdays. So when it was time for lunch we sort of did a quick fix. And, being men, we knew all sort of quick fix lunches, that went with home brew, or gramps good wine, or even a Gin Rickey, a popular drink back in the days of Prohibition. Now you might wonder here, 'jeez' Leo, way back then you were only a kid, what the hell were you doing drinking home brew, wine and gin'? Well, now, way back then it was not against the law for kids to drink it was only against the law to make the stuff, which the powers that were, back then, figured they had covered all the bases. And, not only that, they were too busy chasing Al and his boys to spend too much time chasing kids. And, just because the stuff was all over the house didn't mean that we just guzzled. It was there for meals and a bit of enjoyment in the evenings when we could sit out on the back yard swing and enjoy a summer breeze. Gramps would enjoy his cigar, Dad would have a cigarette or two, and I could swig the foam off the beer bucket or sip some good grape wine. Dad would even let me take a swig of his gin, mighty good sqeezin' all that stuff. As far as I remember, kids never got drunk in those days, mainly because it was there for the taking at meal times and no one ever said you were too young for such stuff. Actually, back then all of that stuff was probably better for you than the city water, which came from the Mississippi and was sort of cloudy. Technology had not quite reached the water filtering system back then, it was just pumped out of the river and left to settle in what were called settling basins. These basins were rotated so that the settled mud could be cleaned out and then rotated again. Never seemed to poison too many folks, but then everybody knew that alcohol was pure, even when we had a bad batch once in a while. Not only that but alcohol was the cure for scraped knees and elbows. Well, now, let's get back to our Saturday lunches.
So, let's make some Onion Sandwiches to go with our mighty good squeezin's.
For each sandwich you want two thick slices of hearty rye bread. Slather each piece with butter, cow stuff that is. Next you want a nice tasty cheese spread to lather on each slice. (Grandma had the best cheese ever. She called it 'Schmeer Case' or in English translation, 'smear cheese' which was her 'invention'. She used to use all the soured milk and pour it in cheese cloth and let all the liquid drain off. Then she would hang these little bags of cheese on a nail in the wine cellar. As it would age and mold, she would wash the mold off with Grandpa's Wine, and hang it back up until it would mold again. Repeat the process until it would quit molding. And now it was ready for Human consumption. Although it had a crust over the outside, the center was soft and creamy.) I know you don't have any of this, but I would suggest a Limburger cheese, or where available Leiderkrantz Cheese. Both are soft centered and easily spreadable. If you don't cotton to the strong odor of these two cheeses then you are on your own as to what soft creamy cheese you like.
Now slice up some red onions, and cover each sandwich with plenty of slices. Salt and pepper to taste, use the pepper freely as it goes good with the red onions. Cover with the other prepared slice of bread and press together to sort of paste the creamy cheese to the onion slices.
Pour yourself a big cold glass of home brew, or Bud nowadays, or a nice glass of red wine. Or for that matter if you know how to make a Gin Rickey go for that.
And have a great Saturday lunch, while mom is busy doing something else.
Take Care Now, Ya'heah!
Click on author's byline for bio.