My Oma, or grandmother is 98 years old. She is awesome. She just moved into The Redwoods here in Mill Valley after her driver’s license was taken away. She was living in San Rafael for decades and took daily walks through Dominican, did her shopping at United Market and Whole Foods. But as she got older she had a hard time lugging her groceries home. The walk down was no problem, it was the walk back that posed difficult. So she started driving, and then, they took away her license.
I guess the DMV gives you an eye test every year once you reach 90. It makes sense, but it land locked my Oma. Wanting to still be independent, she moved to a retirement home that allowed her more freedom. One of the downsides to her move is the food. She is unimpressed with the meal program. Which brings me to her cooking school.
It wasn’t an official cooking school, but it was wonderful. I asked Oma if she would teach me how to make some of her dishes. (As teenagers my siblings and cousins and I had each spent a semester living with Oma and Opa in Washington D.C. Our parents thinking it was a good idea to experience living in our nation’s capital.) Anyway, I had fond memories of certain meals and breads which I wanted to re-create. In addition, I thought it would be a great opportunity to spend time with Oma doing something productive, fun and delicious.
And she made it happen. Once a month Oma invited my sisters and aunts over for a cooking class. She had selected the menu and we as sous chefs helped prepare the meal, set the table and of course, eat. When the dishes were done and we were fully sated, Oma handed us a copy of the recipe, and then at the end of the course, we were rewarded with a cookbook. What a treasure!