Everybody has that one dish that they say their “Bubbe’s (or Zayde’s) is best.” As part of an ongoing series, we’ll be interviewing Sholom residents and families to discover what those dishes are. (If you have a dish – and a Bubbe or Zayde! – that should be featured in “Bubbe’s is Best” email [email protected].)
This month’s bubbe comes from Sholom’s Knollwood Place Apartments resident Ruthie Schoenberger. Ruthie grew up on the North Side (of Minneapolis, of course), and was an only child until age 16 when her sister Nessa arrived. Ruthie says that in their younger years she got to drive Nessa around, and now Nessa gets to drive her around! She has vivid childhood memories of horseback riding, ice skating, playing with paper dolls, and playing jacks.
Ruthie first met her husband Marty on a blind date, set up by her friend Maxine Stein. They went on a boat ride the day before Ruthie’s birthday and were engaged that same summer. Their December wedding was extra memorable because the Sha’arei Tzedek synagogue building staff forgot to turn on the heat that day! Ruthie and Marty were founders of B’nai Emet Synagogue where she also served as the Woman’s Club president. In more recent years, she volunteered in classrooms at Aqulia Schools in St. Louis Park. Ruthie continues volunteering to this day, assembling the Knollwood Place Apartments’ monthly newsletter, helping the Sholom Foundation with mailings and spending countless volunteer hours at the Barbara & Stanley Cohn Sholom Home West Gift Shop.
But Ruthie’s favorite thing to talk about is her (extensive) family:
Three children: Mike (and Nancy) Schoenberger, Heidi (and Sully) Tarshish, and Jeri (and Adeel) Saad.
Plus a host of grandkids, significant others, and great-grandkids:
Steven, Louise, Micah, Laila, Rina, and Shira Schoenberger;
Ali, Josh, Myra and Annie Berdass;
Ethan, Julie, Oscar and Charlie Tarshish; Benjie Tarshish; Karinne Tarshish (fiancé Dan Klamet); Esther Tarshish;
Jaclyn Millner, Greg Duhl, Gabe and Elly Millner;
Justin, Stephanie, Moshe and Dov Saad; Yoni Saad and Naomi Brown.
Two of Bubbe Ruthie’s grandkids, Jaclyn and Ali, were very eager to tell the world about Bubbe Ruthie’s Corn Dish…
What’s the one dish your Bubbe makes that nobody does better?
Jaclyn and Ali: Hands down, the Schoenberger grandkids agree that Bubbe Ruthie’s Corn Dish is the best thing she makes! It should be noted that only one of the spouses of the Schoenberger grandkids reportedly eats and enjoys the dish…maybe it’s genetic?
What makes it the best?
Jaclyn and Ali: It is a super simple dish that tastes so good. Everyone loves corn and it has lots of it – creamed corn, regular corn and corn flakes!
Do you have a favorite memory about this dish that you can share?
Jaclyn: We used to eat corn dish every Friday night when we went to Bubbe and Zaydie’s for Shabbat dinner. Also, when we were younger and Bubbe and Zaydie used to come up to visit us at Camp Ramah for the weekend, Bubbe always brought little tins of corn dish with her and we all got to have corn dish in Bubbe and Zadie’s guest house.
Has Bubbe taught you how to make Corn Dish?
Jaclyn: Bubbe gave me the recipe when I went to college and I used to make it for Shabbat dinner for my roommates sometimes.
Ali: She has shared the recipe with all of us but we’re still trying to make it as well as Bubbe does.
Is this a secret family recipe, or do you freely share it?
Bubbe Ruthie got the recipe from her sister’s daughter-in-law, Patty. Ruthie reports that it was likely a recipe that Patty’s mother made but nobody knows for sure. Bubbe Ruthie has been making this dish for 40 years. As she says, “Today, kids make so many different things. I’m into the basics.”
In between bites of her tuna sandwich and tomato soup in the Knollwood Place Apartments Deli, Bubbe Ruthie added, “There are some people who won’t give you the recipe but by the time you are a Bubbe, you should give it away.”
Will you be continuing the legacy of cooking Corn Dish for the next generation?
Ali: We are working on getting our kids hooked on the corn dish like we all were growing up. So far we have some takers!
Jaclyn: I have already started giving creamed corn to my one-year-old twins to make sure they like corn (which they do!) and Bubbe has offered to keep making it for us even though we usually eat Shabbat dinner at my parents’ house now. I will also be sure to make it for my kids, too (and for myself because it is so good!).
Bubbe Ruthie’s Corn Dish:
1 can of whole corn (drained)
1 can of cream corn
2 extra large eggs (Bubbe said the size of the eggs matters!)
2 cups of corn flakes
2 Tbs margarine or butter
Salt/pepper to taste
Mix all the ingredients together and bake in a casserole dish for 1 hour at 350 degrees. Enjoy!