Let’s face it, absolutely everybody claims that their own grandma is the best cook in the world. To settle this debate once and for all, The Daily Bonnet has travelled across Canadian Mennonite country sampling dishes by every single grandma in the region. The final results are in. There’s no more need for argument or debate. Here are the best Russian Mennonite grandma cooks in the world.
10. Mrs. Aganetha Peters, Abbotsford, BC – Mrs. Peters enters the list with an absolutely epic green bean soup. It’s totally delicious and has got more farmer sausage than bean. Her grandkids appreciate the emphasis on meat.
9. Mrs. Sarah Berg, La Crete, AB – Mrs. Berg’s ruehrei is to die for. Too many people make this on the eggy side. But Mrs. Berg’s delightful ruehrei are little balls of delicious dough. Served with vinegar. Yes, vinegar.
8. Mrs. Annie Froese, Carrot River, SK – Carrot River’s own Mrs. Froese makes by far the best perishky this side of Kiev. What the perishky is like on the other side of Kiev, I have no idea.
7. Mrs. Dorothy Wiebe, New Bothwell, MB – Dorothy Wiebe specializes in platzes of all types. Rhubarb, strawberry, saskatoon berry, you name it. If you’re willing to let her pinch your cheek and ruffle up your hair, maybe she’ll let you try some.
6. Mrs. Helen F. Reimer, Niverville, MB – I’ve tried bubbat far and wide and have concluded that you just can’t beat Mrs. Helen F. Reimer of Niverville’s bubbat…unless, of course, you’re Mrs. Helen B. Reimer of Blumenort.
5. Mrs. Helen B. Reimer, Blumenort, MB – The only bubbat to beat Mrs. Helen F. Reimer of Niverville, is the bubbat created by Mrs. Helen B. Reimer of Blumenort. They’re cousins.
4. Mrs. Mary Koop, Linden, AB – Ahh, Mrs. Koop, you make vereneki so soft, you put the Charmin bears to shame. Boiled or fried, Mrs. Koop is the vereneki queen!
3. Mrs. Katie Driedger, Leamington, ON – After being laid off by the Heinz factory, Mrs. Driedger dedicated the last few years of her life to making absolutely killer glums koki and kielke. Her recipe is in the Leamington Mennonite Treasury under the name Mrs. Henry Driedger.
2. Mrs. Esther Fehr, Gretna, MB – Mrs. Fehr makes better borscht than any Mennonite grandma, yes, even yours. If you don’t believe me, head on down to Gretna and try it for yourself. I don’t recall her address. Just knock on all fifteen doors until you find her.
1. Mrs. Edna Penner, Saskatoon, SK – Not only can she cook a mean formavorscht, but she can butcher a hog like nobody’s business. From cleaning the intestines, to filling the intestines with bits of pork, Mrs. Edna Penner is officially the world’s best Mennonite grandma cook. Congratulations, Edna!
(photo credit: by spader/CC)