The Amish Kitchen

Supper is being made on the grill, which gives me time to write this column. It’s just daughter Loretta and the boys home again, so our table seems empty. Daughter Lovina is at daughter Susan’s house this week.

Daughter Verena and sister Verena headed out for Indianapolis this morning. Yesterday, the doctors said only one visitor per day is allowed now for sister Susan at the hospital.

Cousin David and his wife, Karen, and Aunt Caroline graciously offered their home for Verena and Verena to stay in. During the day, cousin David will drive sister Verena to the hospital to visit sister Susan. Daughter Verena will stay with Aunt Caroline, who needs someone to help her out. They live in Lafayette, Ind., an hour away from the hospital.

This morning, we received the sad news Aunt Shirley, of Lafeyette, Ind., passed away. Our sympathy goes to Uncle (Albert) Jr. and his family. Uncle Jr. is about 90 and is the oldest of my dad’s 12 siblings. My dad was the second oldest of the 13 children. Uncle Andy was the third child in the family (Aunt Caroline’s husband), and he passed away a few years ago.

Our beef is cut up, bagged and either in the freezer or canned and in the basement. We made and bagged more than 300 hamburger patties. We sliced and froze steaks. And, of course, we are enjoying making what we call Rare Beef. We slice the tenderest part of the steak really thin, put salt and pepper on it and deep fat fry it very quickly on each side. If your oil (we use olive oil) is hot enough, it should be done all the way through and be very tender to eat.

On Jan. 15, our family took supper in for granddaughter Jennifer’s third birthday. A good friend of theirs brought an ice cream cake for her, and daughter Elizabeth brought cupcakes. I made a pasta casserole and took a salad and ice cream. With everything that was brought in, we had more than plenty. We all tried to brace up and be happy for Jennifer, in spite of the fact Mose wasn’t there to help her blow out her candles. Jennifer told Susan that morning she knows Daddy will come home on her birthday and bring her a present. She said if he doesn’t, she is getting a driver (an Amish driver) to go get him. She seems to still think her Daddy is coming home someday.

On Saturday, sister Liz and Levi and their daughter Suzanne, brother Albert and Sarah and daughter Sylvia came to Michigan for the weekend. They stayed with sister Verena so daughter Verena could come home for the night. It felt good to have Verena home and to just spend the night together catching up.

On Sunday morning, Joe and I; daughter Verena; sons Benjamin, Joseph and Kevin; and a few friends of theirs went to sister Verena’s house and had brunch with all of them. I made two breakfast omelets to add to the menu of biscuits and gravy, potatoes, etc.

Daughters Loretta and Lovina went to church with their special friends Dustin and Daniel. Clint, Dustin and Daniel’s brother, and his wife, Hannah, were hosting services at a neighbor’s place.

Sister Susan was off the ventilator earlier this week but still on oxygen. We could talk to her over the phone Sunday. Her voice is very weak, and she has a long road ahead.

At 10 p.m. on Tuesday night, the doctor called sister Verena to let her know they are putting sister Susan on the ventilator again. Susan’s lungs are not too well, and she has a lot of mucus in her airways. They will be sedating her because they are putting her on the ventilator again. Please pray for her and for all of us. God’s blessings to all.

Lovina’s Amish Kitchen is written by Lovina Eicher, Old Order Amish writer, cook, wife and mother of eight. Her newest cookbook, “Amish Family Recipes,” is available wherever books are sold. Readers can write to Eicher at P.O. Box 1689, South Holland, IL 60473 (please include a self-addressed stamped envelope for a reply), or email LovinasAmishKitchen@MennoMedia.org, and your message will be passed on to her to read. She does not personally respond to emails.