My Aunt Mary Ann was among the last of the old fashioned cooks in my family. She was skilled with abilities that were handed down through generations of women who could create meals, seemingly out of nothing more than flour, egg and bacon grease.
Pies, noodles, dumplings and fudge were among her specialties. She also made great lasagna and the best deviled eggs I have ever eaten.
When she died back in August, I couldn’t help but look ahead to the holidays and think about the empty seat at our family table and the foods she would normally provide.
I would especially miss those deviled eggs.
So, when we discovered a homemade pie in her freezer, it really should have come as no surprise. After all, she liked to have a baked good ready when someone in the community died or when there was another need.
My parents invited the family for an early Thanksgiving dessert night over the weekend. Everyone brought a homemade treat to share. We had red velvet cake, chocolate pie, peach cobbler and butterscotch pie.
Mary Ann’s pumpkin pie was there too. Everyone got to enjoy a small, symbolic piece of her last pie.
As much as Mary Ann enjoyed baking, she loved having her family together more. She told me that her happiest memories as an adult were when my grandparents were living and all the family gathered together for a meal. I think it would please her to know that her pie brought everyone together again.
I wrote a story about Mary Ann just weeks before she died and read it at her funeral. If you’re interested, click here to read that story. Otherwise, here’s wishing you a happy day, wherever you are, and a happy Thanksgiving if you are here in America.
Be safe, be well and try not to eat too much!