A Sentiment

God knew what He was doing when He sent a gentle breeze and brought a lovely butterfly to set my heart at ease. The happiness of your friendship and the gentleness of your words have touched my life in special ways and now I feel assured. Thank you for your loyalty and for reading everyday. I only hope you find things to make a happy day.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

A Cup of Coffee With Friends

My Little Santa with a bird wreath...stands near the window where the birdfeeders are. Years ago at the time President Kennedy was running for the presidency, I lived in a small town. In a neighborhood full of young people just starting out. We were all in the same boat...husbands worked and women stayed home taking care of the family and house. During the Christmas season, many of our husbands worked overtime or took on an extra job to bring in more money for Christmas shopping. We Moms were home for many hours with our kids...many hours. We were there to wipe noses, rock a sick baby, play at a child's level, go for walks (even on the coldest day) break up little squabbles, read stories...walks to the library, give baths with Mr. Bubble, change diapers, and potty train. These were just a few things that come to mind. Once the seemingly endless work was done and the kids were in bed...we still had a couple of hours to call our own. I remember doing the ironing at night, paying bills, picking up clutter...etc. We girls decided to have one night a month to get out and leave our kids behind...either with husbands or a baby sitter. Many of us would share a sitter. This night was when we could get together and drink coffee and have a baked treat. One of our neighbors husband worked at night, so we descended on her house. Her Mom always came over and made the coffee. It was strong Swedish coffee, made in a huge enamel coffee pot on the stove. It was the best coffee I had ever had. So smooth and delicious...I drank it black. This time of year we brought cookies to share...we even had a little Christmas cookie exchange a couple of years. This was the time when home parties were just starting. Tupperware, Queensway clothing, Sarah Coventry, and toy parties. Once in a while we worked one of those parties in our one evening a month. The camaraderie of those women got us through those lonely days, when we were pretty much fizzled out. It gave us something to look forward to. It was what kept us sane in those childbearing years. We got together and discussed everything but children. Politics and religion were huge subjects...as we were all pulling for John Kennedy. We even hosted a coffee for him at that time. I got to thinking about this memory, when I posted the recipe for the Swedish nurse's cookies. Here's how that Swedish coffee was made.

Many who grew up in Northern Minnesota or in other Swedish communities remember the smooth, rich flavor of the coffee served at the Lutheran church after services on Sunday. While many folks tout egg shells in the coffee grounds for helping to clarify the coffee, this is the only recipe I’ve found that calls for using an entire egg in the coffee.

According to chemists, the egg is the reason that Swedish egg coffee is so smooth – the proteins in the egg bind with the acid in the coffee to neutralize it. That could make Swedish egg coffee ideal for someone who loves coffee but can’t drink it because they have a sensitive stomach. Here’s one recipe for Swedish coffee that you can try for yourself and see if it doesn’t make the smoothest cup of coffee you’ve ever tasted.

Swedish Egg Coffee Recipe

You need:

  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 crushed eggshell
  • 1 cup ground coffee
  • 1/2 cup cold water
  • 8 cups boiling water
  • In a small bowl, mix the ground coffee with the beaten egg until the coffee grounds are well coated. Stir in the crushed eggshell, then add in the cold water. Meanwhile, bring 8 cups of water to boil in a large saucepan. Add coffee mixture to the boiling water and stir for about four minutes, or until the foam subsides. Remove from the heat and cover the pan. Let stand for 7-10 minutes, until the grounds and eggshell have settled to the bottom of the pot. Strain the coffee through a wire or cloth strainer into coffee cups or into a serving carafe. Add sugar and milk to taste if desired.

    This coffee was made in a big blue speckled enamel coffee pot. I remember at Christmas she added a cinnamon stick to the pot. She was a bread baker extraordinaire...her Swedish coffee cakes were to die for. She was the Grandma and a wonderful friend to all of us who came for coffee.


    acorn hollow said...

    I remember my mom having coffee with the neighbors. they had the parties also. I have forgotten all about queens way clothing

    Elenka said...

    Have you ever made this coffee at home? How did it come out?
    I'm not a huge coffee drinker but like to try new things.
    Would I be able to tell the difference as I would add milk to it?
    You always have great stories.

    Balisha said...

    Hi Elenka,
    I tried to make it once years ago, but it didn't turn out like hers. I can't drink coffee with caffeine anymore...I'm surprised that we could sleep at night after drinking that strong brew.

    Balisha said...

    Hi Cathy,
    We had so many Queens Way parties. I actually got a break on some of the clothes, because I modeled them at the parties. It was a lot of fun back then, but I got tired of the home parties...I always felt that I had to have one. My favorite would have to be Pampered Chef, which started many years later.

    patsy said...

    I love your photo at the top of the page of the rocker!

    Margie's Musings said...

    There were three of us that got together rgularly. Those were life saving gatherings. Bob was working nights and going to school days. I had three under five and the boys both had asthma with projectile vomiting. I thought I would lose my mind in those days. Maybe that's why old age seems so pleasant.