Allison Day
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Archive for September, 2017

A cookbook for my grandma

Three years ago, Son and I decided to write a cookbook.

Now, lest you get any crazy ideas… no, I do not have a cookbook deal to announce. No, this will never be available for purchase. No, most of these recipes will never be posted on Fridgg (my mother would murder me). And no, I will never be writing my own cookbook (I’ll leave that to the other Allison Day, who does quite a fine job of it! Seriously, go buy her cookbooks, she’s awesome.)

No, this was just a little pet project, that turned into a really big pet project, that we finally finished just in time to order them and hand deliver each and every one of them to all my family members at Thanksgiving last year.

Stack of cookbooks, cover

Suffice to say, if I ever had any urge to write a cookbook, I’ve gotten it all out now. Between cooking, photographing, writing, designing, and editing an entire cookbook, we nearly lost our minds… and we didn’t even have to develop the recipes! Mad respect for all the actual published cookbook authors out there – it’s a heck of a lot of work.

Sadly, both of the people who inspired me to put together this cookbook – my grandmother, who was responsible for all these recipes becoming family favorites, and my dad, who wrote the original “Mrs. Kaji’s Cookbook” when I was a child – passed away before we finished this project. However I was lucky enough to be able to show both of them a good number of the photos before they passed away, and both were very happy with the result.

Inner pages of cookbook

So why am I sharing this now? Well, today would have been my grandmother’s birthday, so I figure there’s no better day to show off something we made in her honor.

Plus it’s just a really good excuse to show off the photography that Son did for the cookbook. (And I also want to point out – LOOK AT HOW BEAUTIFULLY HE DESIGNED THE ENTIRE COOKBOOK. He’s amazing.) 😁

So, without further ado, here are all the dishes and photos that went into the cookbook:

okazu, stir-fried vegetables

okazu okazu
stir-fried vegetables stir-fried vegetables

crescent tuna melt

crescent tuna melt crescent tuna melt crescent tuna melt

spaghetti casserole

spaghetti casserole

barbecued frankfurters, tempura

barbecued frankfurters barbecued frankfurters
tempura tempura

spaghetti sauce

spaghetti sauce spaghetti sauce

beef stew

beef stew beef stew

enchiladas

enchiladas enchiladas

teriyaki chicken

teriyaki chicken teriyaki chicken

sweet and sour chicken wings, fish sticks

sweet and sour chicken wings sweet and sour chicken wings fish sticks

miso soup

miso soup miso soup

fried rice

fried rice fried rice fried rice fried rice

potato salad, chicken chow mein

potato salad chicken chow mein

cube steak, family steak teriyaki

cube steak cube steak family steak teriyaki

lazy man’s pot roast

lazy man's pot roast lazy man's pot roast

burrito meat, strawberry jam

burrito meat strawberry jam

chocolate layer cake with chocolate ganache

chocolate layer cake with chocolate ganache chocolate layer cake with chocolate ganache chocolate layer cake with chocolate ganache chocolate layer cake with chocolate ganache

tsukemono, seven layer dip

tsukemono seven layer dip seven layer dip

cheese roll

cheese roll cheese roll

rice stuffing, bread stuffing

rice stuffing rice stuffing bread stuffing

candied yams, yam pie

candied yams yam pie

banana cream pie

banana cream pie banana cream pie banana cream pie

cream puffs, gelatin salad, finger jello

cream puffs gelatin salad finger jello

ritz cracker peanut butter sandwich cookies

ritz cracker peanut butter sandwich cookies ritz cracker peanut butter sandwich cookies

snickerdoodles

snickerdoodles snickerdoodles

date bars, refrigerator cookies

date bars date bars refrigerator cookies

pecan bars

pecan bars pecan bars pecan bars

rolo pretzels, shoyu almonds

rolo pretzels shoyu almonds

shoyu chex mix, hot chocolate mix

hot chocolate mix shoyu chex mix shoyu chex mix

wontons

(This was our cover photo, hence the odd layout.)

wontons wontons wontons

stuffed somen salad

stuffed somen salad stuffed somen salad stuffed somen salad

chinese chicken salad, shrimp and cucumber tsunemono

chinese chicken salad shrimp and cucumber tsunemono

deep-fried pork strips

deep-fried pork strips deep-fried pork strips