It's strange how if your mom is a decent cook at all her food is what always tastes "right" to you. Other foods may indeed be better and you might like them more but that is where the bar is permanently set.
I remember being eighteen and having Chow Mein at a restaurant for the first time. I was stunned that it featured noodles. Because my mother's doesn't. Now my mother is a white lady from Des Moines, IA so I can't imagine why her recipe gleaned entirely from Better Homes & Garden is not completely authentic.
One of J and I's long-standing arguments is about French Toast. I like it the One True Way which is with butter, sugar and cinnamon. Maple syrup is for pancakes and waffles. That so many people (pretty much everyone who is not in my family) don't eat French Toast the right way is why I don't order it while out. Why bother if they are just going to put syrup all over it?
So my mother's pancakes are the RIGHT pancakes and oh there are so many things she made when I was a kid that still make me feel so happy and safe. They are comforting and homey and so delicious. Right after I had Mo she knew I hadn't eaten in basically a week. She drove up to my house and roasted a chicken and made mashed potatoes. This is simple food and something I could have made for myself or J could have made it. But it was my mother's chicken and potatoes and I made myself eat it. I consider that the turning point for me post-birth. When I stopped being QUITE so crazy.
This week I made pork chops for dinner. Nothing special, just sauteed in butter with garlic and pepper. But the baby gulped it up and begged for more. And I realized that my food is becoming her jumping off point and will taste "right" to her as she grows up.
Maybe I will have to learn to make pancakes that don't come from a box?