Thursday, June 30, 2005

Big disappointment. For an unfortunate reason, I visited Seattle again earlier this month. My Aunt Winona passed. But it was a great opportunity to visit with relatives and get reacquainted with my many wonderful cousins. I spent some extra time with my cousin Shirley (Winona's daughter) going over her geneological research, and what I could remember of my efforts.

Shirley has really dug deep and verified a lot of facts, and debunked a favorite family legend. I was often reminded growing up that I was related to Sir Francis Drake, through my great-grandmother, Susan Drake, and I thought it rather romantic to be related to such a famous pirate! My father spent a lot of time reading about him, and was quite happy to find that there is a street named after him nearby in Marin, Sir Francis Drake Blvd. - and that the reason is because he actually voyaged here. Oh well. Big disappointment.

Apparently, we are rather related to a Dutch family that lived in New Amsterdam (New York city) named Draat? (I'll have to get the exact spelling from my cousin). So now that I've discovered some Dutch roots, I'll have to post a very homey Dutch recipe for Stamppot. Stamppot originated in the Dutch farmlands and there are many varieties. Basically, its boiled mashed potatoes with other interesting ingredients mashed right on in! And often some kind of sausage placed on top. Kale and endive are very popular stampot ingredients, and the result is quite delicious if you can get over eating a very green shade of potatoes.

Here's one recipe I like that uses carrots:

Hollandse Winter Stamppot

8 large wither carrots, peeled and sliced
3 very large onions, peel and cut into rings
3-4 cups water
1 tsp salt
1 tsp margarine (sunflower is preferred)
10 medium potatoes, peeled and cut up
3/4 cup margarine (again, sunflower is preferred)
1 cup pure maple syrup

Place the carrots and onions in a 6-quart Dutch oven, along with the water, 1 tsp salt and 1 tsp margarine. Boil until tender. Meanwhile, boil the potatoes until tender in a separate pot.

Drain the carrots and onions, reserving 1/3 cup of the boiling liquid. Return the carrots, onions and 1/2 cup reserved liquid to the Dutch oven. Drain the potatoes and add them to the Dutch oven. Mash the carrots, onions and potatoes until well incorporated. Add the 3/4 cup sunflower margarine and salt and pepper to taste. The dish should be a lovely orange color from the carrots. Heat the maple syrup and pour over the stamppot and enjoy. The addition of the syrup is a Friesian (Northern Netherlands) addition and children love it.


cookiecrumb said...

Sir Frances Drake!
Maple syrup!!!
Wow, just wow.

Anna Haight said...

Ah ha! I thought you'd like it :-)