I am one of the lucky ones. I have an absolutely terrific Mother-in-Law who treats me like a daughter, not like a daughter-in-law. For over 35 years she’s been an advisor, a baby sitter (lo those many years ago) a terrific friend and one of the best people I know. In fact, the only thing that keeps her from being absolutely perfect is that fact that she doesn’t like raisins.
I know, not a deal breaker in the scheme of things but I happen to LOVE raisins and when it comes to making cookies, or bread or even baked chicken, I can throw a whole box in, eat whatever is on my plate and yet I still pick the ones sticking out of the left over’s when I’m putting them away. We have had many an “interesting” discussion as to the merits (and advisability) of me putting raisins in any and all dishes that happen to come out of my kitchen when she and my Father-in-Law (who happens to belong to team raisin) come over to eat.
Raisins (and currants and Sultanas) are dried grapes. Since there are bunches (I do love a good pun) of varieties of grapes (red, green, purple etc.) there are lots of different sizes and colors of raisins (not to be confused with prunes which are dried plums). However, unlike eating a fresh grape, when you eat a raisin you are ingesting a concentrated natural gem of vitamins, electrolytes, and minerals. As an extra added culinary bonus you get anti-oxidants, fiber, and deliciousness that even finicky eaters (my mother in law as the exception) can eat 24/7 and not feel like they’re over indulging.
Raisins are incredibly adaptable and are right at home in savory and/or sweet dishes and have insinuated themselves into breakfast, lunch AND dinner menus. The following recipes are all simple and adapt themselves to golden or black raisins. I do however prefer the golden raisin in chicken and savory dishes as, in my opinion; it’s a tad bit milder and sweeter in flavor than the black raisin and lends itself better to a savory dish.
My Mothers’ Day gifts to my readers are the following recipes. As for my Mother-in-Law, she gets chocolate.