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From My Mother's Kitchen: An Alphabet Poem
Pat Brisson


Food my mother made for us
Food from A to Zed;
Food she baked and cooked and boiled
To keep her family fed.
Apple pie with a flaky crust made from Crisco,
Beef stew (with too much gristle),
Chocolate chip cookies from the Tollhouse recipe,
Dates stuffed with walnuts and coated with sugar,
Eggnog at Christmas time,
French toast with butter and cinnamon sugar,
Ginger ale (stirred until flat) for upset stomachs,
Hamburgers and hot dogs on the 4th of July,
Ice cream — Breyer’s coffee for her and Neapolitan for us,
Junket rennet custard, a slippery, slidey treat,
Ketchup on our meatloaf,
Ladyfingers with fresh strawberries and whipped cream,
Mincemeat pies at the holidays, (eaten only by the grown-ups),
Noodles, broad and buttery,
Oatmeal cookies flavored with lemon,
Potatoes, usually boiled,
Quick bread, mostly date and nut,
Ravioli from Chef Boyardee,
Spaghetti with meat sauce,
Tapioca pudding with cinnamon on top,
Upside down peach cake,
Vanilla pudding made from scratch, served over steamed apples and yellow cake,
Watermelon slices with too many seeds,
10X confectioners sugar dusted on top of lemon pound cake,
Yeast bread warm from the oven with butter melting into it,
Zwieback when we were very young.
Food my mother made for us
Food from A to Zed;
Food she baked and cooked and boiled
To keep her family fed.

© by Pat Brisson.
Used with the author’s permission.



Pat Brisson is a former elementary school teacher, school librarian, and reference librarian in a public library. She has been writing picture books and easy-to-read chapter books for almost thirty years. Pat coordinates Project Storybook, a program at Edna Mahan Correctional Facility for Women in Clinton, New Jersey, which allows incarcerated mothers to select, record and mail books and tapes to their children. She received the N. J. Governor's Volunteer Award in Human Services for this wonderful project. Pat lives in Phillipsburg, New Jersey; learn more about her at



Post New Comment:
A list poem! How neat. I had to dig in my memory for Junket rennet custard, which I don't think my mother ever used. She did make puddings from scratch, as well as Jello boxed mixes. Fun to read and think about.
Posted 11/21/2016 03:45 PM
How I miss her cooking/baking. Almost as much as I miss her...Thanks for this lovely poem.
Posted 11/21/2016 11:35 AM
You're making me hungry, Pat! This creative piece goes in my personal journal. Thank you.
Posted 11/21/2016 10:16 AM
Thanks for these many shared memories. Seems like you must have grown up on my block in Chicago. The ketchup on meatloaf and the unfizzed gingerale... We really do hold these memory tastes dear. Marilyn Zelke-Windau
Posted 11/21/2016 08:36 AM
Sure does ring bells.Of my mother's kitchen, too. Many thanks,Pat.
Posted 11/21/2016 07:59 AM

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