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Posts Tagged ‘Baboo’

by Caitlin Saniga

Polichinki with grilled apricot filling, Greek yogurt and spicy candied walnuts

I vividly remember many Sunday afternoons of my childhood spent sitting at Baboo’s kitchen table with three plates spread out in front of me: one for a never-ending supply of super-thin fried pancakes, one to use as a filling and rolling station and another one to pile up the finished palacinka. Baboo kept two or three pans going on the stove at one time, and she didn’t stop until she’d made enough pancakes for our whole family (six at the time), which was about 30 palacinka. My goal was to keep the supply plate empty, so with as much efficiency as I could muster, I’d select jelly or yogurt or cottage cheese, and then fill and roll the palacinka, creating an ever-larger mound. My favorite filling was strawberry jelly, but we experimented with lots of flavors: grape, mint, raspberry, even apple butter. But Baboo’s favorite was apricot. With that in mind, I created this recipe. I doubt she’d ever make something like this in her kitchen, but I bet she’d have liked it.

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by Caitlin Saniga

Baboo's potato salad

Over the Father’s Day weekend, I tried to remember the foods my dad loved to eat. My list included a lot of the Baboo Saniga staples: halupki, haluski and apple crisp. And this potato salad made the list, too. Baboo often made it for Easter brunch and served it with ham and green beans. The whole family loved it, and she’d make big batches that could be heated up later or eaten cold, straight from the fridge, with a fork. Which is exactly what Dad would have done.

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by Caitlin Saniga

My Baboo would be proud of these mashed potatoes. She believed that everything is infinitely better with butter and onions. Unlike olive oil, butter really preserves the onions' sweetness. She used to buy both ingredients in bulk and make pan after pan of butter-caramelized onions. She'd save her old butter and cottage cheese containers for this task, and then she'd dole out the little vats of butter and onions to anyone who showed even the mildest approval of the combination. Her instructions: Freeze it, and add a spoonful (or more) to anything (scrambled eggs, sauteed cabbage, noodles, potato salad etc.).

  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 8 medium russet potatoes, peeled and chopped into 3/4-inch cubes
  • 1/2 cup milk (or more if you prefer creamier mashed potatoes)
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt

Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-low heat (about 8 o’clock on your dial). Add the onion and let cook for about 30 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes, and more often toward the end of the cook time. When the onions are finished cooking, they will be golden brown and transparent with brown edges (If you’ve lost all of the transparency, you’ve cooked ’em too long, and they will be bitter). Stir in 1/4 teaspoon salt, and set aside

In the meantime, bring a medium pot of water to a boil. When the water is at a rolling boil, add the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and the potatoes. Cook uncovered and on medium heat for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a fork can easily pierce and break apart the potato. Drain the potatoes and transfer to the bowl of an upright mixer or another large bowl. Add the milk, and use an electric mixer (fitted with a whisk if using an upright) to whip the potatoes until they are smooth. Add the butter and onion mixture and stir to combine.

Serve immediately.

Makes 8 side dish servings.

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