8 Favorite Recipes From My Mom And Grandma


Blog, Dinner, Easter, Healthy Family, Holiday, Meals, Menu Ideas, Recipes
  • By Sarah Koszyk, MA, RDN on
  • May 1st, 2016

Mothers_Day_Collage
Getting ready to celebrate Mother’s Day this weekend, I’ve compiled 8 favorite recipes from my Mom and Grandma. I’ve had the luxury of eating these recipes since my childhood and have enjoyed them on so many family occasions. Now that we’re all grown up, I still continue to make these delicious dishes. Take a pick and make one or two of them this weekend with your family to celebrate Mother’s Day.

Sauerkraut_FINAL_1
Croatian Sauerkraut

Sauerkraut is a Croatian tradition. My Grandma made this sauerkraut recipe at almost every family event we had. We would sit down at the table and share stories while enjoying the delicious feast in front of us. Food brings people together. My Mom continues to make Croatian Sauerkraut every Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter, and holiday fiesta. The addition of the tomato sauce makes Croatian Sauerkraut exciting and unique when compared to other sauerkrauts you would typically find on a hot dog, sausage, or restaurant menu. Tomatoes are so abundant in Croatia. They seem to pop into many recipes while adding a plethora of flavor and health benefits. Both tomatoes and cabbage are great sources of vitamin C and contain amazing antioxidants for anti-inflammatory benefits which protect the heart and may prevent cancer. Sauerkraut is also awesome for gut health due to the probiotics found in the fermented cabbage.

Croatian sauerkraut is a perfect vegetable side dish for your meal with its savory flavor. Every time we have this dish, I instantly get transported to comfort-food heaven. I know you will enjoy it as much as I do. Pair the sauerkraut with your favorite protein and mashed potatoes for a complete meal. Click HERE for a healthy and creamy mashed potato recipe.

Pierogis
Potato Pierogi’s

This recipe is from my Polish Grandma on my Dad’s side. My Grandma Koszyk taught my Mom how to make pierogi’s and my Mom is a fabulous student. I made this particular dish with my Mom to make it extra special. We spent an afternoon together making homemade pierogi’s. They are Polish dumplings made from flour and stuffed with mashed potatoes. You can also stuff them with sauerkraut and with cheese, but those are other recipes. We usually eat pierogi’s along with some type of sausage or corned beef, a salad, and a vegetable. That’s what cooking is to me: spending time with my loved ones, sharing good food, and making amazing memories. I hope you enjoy our pierogi cooking experience as much as we did.

Turkey_Soup_FINAL
Grandma’s Comfort Turkey/Chicken Soup for the Soul

It’s Turkey/Chicken Soup time and the perfect way to use up leftover turkey or chicken bones. This chicken/turkey soup recipe is so delicious and fantastic it comes straight from my Grandma’s soul. You can make the broth from scratch (which is what I’ve done here) or use a pre-made broth. If making the broth from scratch, I use up all my leftover vegetable parts that I usually compost to add to the broth while it’s boiling like onion & garlic & ginger peels/skins, vegetable ends from the carrots, celery, zucchini, broccoli, etc. This is definitely a classic comfort food recipe that belongs in everyone’s cookbook.

Chicken Avala
Grandma’s Chicken Avala

This is another fabulous recipe from my Grandma. It’s perfect to make ahead with all the ingredients and heat up when you are ready to serve. We generally eat Chicken Avala for Sunday brunch because you can make it the night before, then just throw in the oven the day of the party. It was a hit at our gathering this past Sunday where there were 10 of us together.

tunanoodle
Tuna Noodle Casserole

Tuna Noodle Casserole is one of my all-time favorite dishes growing up and it still remains a favorite today. My Mom used to make this dish and I never wanted to stop eating it. Hello melted cheese and pasta. What more deliciousness can you ask for? Here’s a healthy twist on the classic Tuna Noodle Casserole without losing Any of the taste. And the dish is made in just 1 pot. To make it kid-friendly, use fun-shaped noodles. I used Radiatori. They’re shaped like radiators. You can also use Farfalle (butterfly noodles) or any other shape you find. Make it fun. It’s already scrumptious.

moussaka
Moussaka: Meat & Vegetarian Version

This is my Grandma’s version of Moussaka. It’s hearty and great to make ahead of time. You can prep it all and place it in the fridge until you’re ready to cook it in the oven (almost like a lasagna that you can make ahead before finishing the final bake). And it’s a big enough dish to have for leftovers. We enjoy eating moussaka with a side salad.

Cabbage_Salad
Chinese Cabbage Salad

My Mom’s most famous salad recipe: Chinese Cabbage Salad – is the best. The last tailgating party we went to, we brought it with us and one of our guy friends said, “I never knew cabbage could taste so good!” And he continued to eat 3 bowls of it. This is always a hit at parties and events and is really easy to prep and make ahead of time. You can also add chicken for extra protein or to make it a main entree. Thanks Mom for always getting me invited to parties and being a hit with the food.

FINAL_Zucchini_Tomato
Tomato Zucchini Bake

This vegetable side dish is a classic in my home. We ate it so often growing up. My Mom was the queen of making easy, fast, affordable, and delicious dishes. We still serve it often because it is a great accompaniment to so many different entrees. You can also pre-prep the tomato zucchini bake and put it in the fridge. Then, when you want to cook it, just pull it out and put it in the oven. This is fantastic to bring to parties, too, because it’s beautiful and a great way for people to get some veggies in.

Cheers to all the amazing Moms, Grandmas, Aunties, Sisters, Daughters, and Women out there. Happy Mother’s Day.

Sarah Koszyk, MA, RDN

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