With double carbs (triple if you have bread with it to sop up the gravy) this is a heavy dish, but the farm hands needed all those carbs for energy way back when…… Great Grandma, Iretha Hunter, grew up on the nationally recognized historic farm in Carrol, Ohio known as Rock Mill.
As summer came to an end all those years ago, and the wheat crops turned the hill sides their golden hue, a crew of men who operated the threshers (a device that separates the head of a stalk of grain from the straw, then separates the kernel from the rest of the head) would show up at Rock Mill to help with the harvest. There would have to be a mighty sizeable meal put out to stave off those hungry appetites. So…. with a hen house full of chickens and plenty of flour from the mill, Great Grandma’s homemade chicken and noodles over mashed potatoes and gravy was born.
After Grandma grew up and got married, she purchased a boarding house a half a block away from Ohio State’s High Street where she charged $100.00/month rent. Dad decided to go back to school at Ohio State so they rented an apartment across the alley from Great Grandmas boarding house. On moving day, after hours upon hours of moving furniture and boxes, both Mom and Dad were dead tired. Great Grandma invited them over for dinner and made chicken and noodles over mashed potatoes and gravy.
Mom said “it was to die for”, “it couldn’t have been better if it was caviar or filet mignon”. This is one of many recipes my Mom remembers making with Great Grandma in her modest little kitchen in the basement of the boarding house and has passed down generation after generation. She also made wonderful “cream and sugar” pies, which is a great topic for another post.
The noodle recipe is from my paternal Grandma “nu-nu” who is pictured below.
Let’s raise a toast to Grandma’s everywhere who have passed on great family recipes for us to enjoy. Let us celebrate these moments together, where the past and the present unite to remind us of the beautiful people who have touched our hearts and souls.
Note regarding featured image: The china in the featured image is “flow blue”, a style of porcelain that originated in the Regency era, sometime in the 1820’s among the Staffordshire potters of England. The name is derived from the blue glaze that blurred or “flowed” during the firing process. These dishes are believed to have belonged to Great, Great, Grandma Clara, Iretha’s Mother.