Get In Touch


Please don't be shy!  I love to hear from readers. I also love to know how you found your way here, so please tell me  :-)

You can post a comment to a post in a variety of ways. You can even be Anonymous. Yes, comments are moderated, but that's just to avoid spam.

If you have a recipe you'd like me to try, please send it. I'm happy to credit it to you.

Feel free to send me a message by e-mail:   bkilpatrick (at) mac (dot) com.

My literary agent can be reached at:  barbara (at)  barbarabraunagency (dot) com.

Thanks! Najlepša hvala!

Blair Kilpatrick

39 comments:

  1. I'm very excited to find your site, while idly looking for recipe for "beans and blocks" (as I knew it as a kid)... finally, googled slovenian beans and noodle soup and stumbled upon your page! Yay! I plan to spend much time reading ALL, but for now, know that tomorrow, I'm heading to my mom's to get the recipe, she has been anxious to have me write it down. We used lima beans and it was often served during Lent, though it was so salty, I had always thought it was made with ham broth! But GOOD Stuff... It will be interesting to see the variation between yours and mine, which possibly have to do with the area of Slovenia that we are from... will email you... meantime, you might want to look at Mom's blog, which we haven't added to in quite some time, but it has lots of history... http://justinedragavon.blogspot.com/

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  3. Thanks for writing, Chris! So was this the bean-and-bleki soup? I see you are from N. Minnesota. My Slovenian ancestors started out there too, in the Iron Range/Ely. So maybe that's the connection!

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  4. Oh boy, my mom will be so excited..she probably knows your family, I'm going to see her today, will get back to you by email... Our soup was different though... more light colored... i never realized it was lima bean, more white looking, no tomato... I'll get back to you with info...

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  5. I've looked at the link to your mom's blog. She sounds like an amazing woman! Much like my own mother, who is somewhat younger (89) but also bright, open-minded, liberal. She wouldn't have known my immediate family, I don't think. My grandmother was born in Ely in 1902 to recently arrived Slovenian immigrants parents who soon moved the family to another mining town in PA. But I bet your mom knew the Strukel family, who were probably descendants of my g-grandmother's brother, who arrived in Ely before she did and "sponsored" her. (For details, see my Immigration I and Immigration II posts. Not such a happy family story.) Yes, do e-mail me.

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  6. It was a pleasure to meet you and your spouse at the annual Trgatev at the Slovenian Hall. I am so pleased to connect with the SF Slovene community. It was such a pleasure to get a chance to practice the language and get a jolt to actually learn to read and write it. My hope is that the SF Slovene community can bring in the younger generations who can trace family back to Slovenija.

    Pozdrav,

    Jozef Antolin

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  7. What a surprise that you found my blog! Steve and I enjoyed meeting you too, Jozef! Yes, that sampler language class was great. Sure wish I could go on a regular basis. Will you be going to Martinovanje? I think that's the next big event at the Slovenian Hall. Hope to see you again.

    Stay in touch!

    Blair K.

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  8. Blair,
    I also found your page by accident while searching for a stuffed pepper recipe. I grew up in Cleveland and now live in Phoenix and what I miss the most is the heritage and culture I grew up with. Going through your blog and recipes have brought back so many wonderful memories. Thank you!

    Chris Bajc

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    1. Thanks so much for stopping by, Chris! Sounds like you may have been much more familiar with these traditions than I was. So much of this is new for me, except for potica. I never even knew stuffed peppers can be a Slovenian dish till I started this project!

      Blair K.

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  9. The middle of the night, and how could I have found this site?
    The word ELY popped out. I was born and raised in Ely

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  10. Found your site in the middle of the night.
    The word ELY popped out, I was born and raised in Ely.

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  11. Thanks for stopping by, Anonymous. And glad we have discovered that we are already Facebook friends :-)

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  12. Hello, I just found your blog. Its very interesting. I am a Slovenian so if you have any question about recepies aks away. If I wont have the answer (mind that I am only 25 and not a cooking expert :) I can ask both of my grandmothers that cook a lot. I am from the Zasavje region. the region is known for its mining history, so the old recepies are simple, as was the miners food, but very good. We do potice often of course:) A lot of diferent tipes of potica I must say (I think: wallnut of course, chocolate, chocolate and coconut, tarragon, hazenut, and a different tipe of potica that is called potratna potica- I think it is baked with two tipes of dough, but I would have to ask my mother or my granmother for more exact informations). And then we have a lot of tipes of sausages, since my family had a restourant a long time. I especially like granadirmarš - that is a dish with pasta, potatos and onion. And then theres the well known dessert šmorn - cesarski praženec, that is also known in Austria, I don't know the english word for it, but the german is Kaiserschmarren. I see that I wrote a lot, if you have any questions don't hasitate to ask.
    greetings from Slovenia
    Anja

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    1. Greetings Anja! Thank you so much for visiting and commenting! It is interesting that you live in a mining region, since my grandfather and one of my great-grandfathers worked as miners when they immigrated to the United States more than a century ago. (They came from the Dolenjska region.) I have made many of the dishes you mention. I especially liked šmorn, which was new to me. I am sure I will have some questions for you soon.

      Best wishes,
      Blair

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  13. I was searching for soup recipes like my husband's grammy used to make for us when we first were married. She, too, lived on Cleveland's east side in the 1920-30s.
    Her chicken and beef soups were wondeful. One thing that I always wondered about was that she would always cook up noodles separately for the soup...they were never added with the soup. Always served with the soup. When I ran across your site today, I wondered if this was a Slovenian tradition,or just her "signature" way of doing soup.

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    1. Thanks for writing! Can't say for sure about those noodles. Were they added to the soup at the end, or actually served separately?

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  14. Hi Blair, I also am a Slovenka but from Pennsylvnaia and would like to get in touch but your email address, BKilpatrick@mac.com doesnt work. I host a food tour, Taste of Slovenia to Slovenia. www.foodtourslovenia.wordpress.com also on FaceBook page Taste of Slovenia www.facebook.com/tasteofslovenia. My email is sponusic@gmail.com or tasteofslovenia@gmail.com

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    1. Thanks for trying to get in touch! (The problem, I think, is that my e-mail address should be all lower case: bkilpatrick@mac.com.) I think I may have read about your food tours. I will definitely take a look at your website. Coincidentally, my husband and I are just starting to plan a trip for this July that will include a week in Slovenia.

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  15. could you please send me a recipe for potatoes, pinto beans and sauerkraut for my husband. thank you.

    carolynnelv@att.net

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    1. Trying again! Carolynn, just look for a recipe for jota, or sauerkraut and bean soup. I have a version on this blog, for my Week 6 dinner, here: http://slovenianroots.blogspot.com/2012/03/slovenian-dinner-week-6-traditional.html

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  17. Blair
    My father was also raised in the Slovenian area of Cleveland - we just returned from my cousins wedding in Ljubljana and your potica recipe is the same as my grandmothers. I also have my grandmothers copy of the Glory of cooking, the Slovenian cookbook.
    My mother is Italian and we always focused on that heritage but have become so interested in our Slovenian heritage after meeting our family in Slovenia - what a beautiful and fantastic country. Your blog is awesome. Thank you

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    1. Thanks for writing, Terre, and for the kind words about my blog! It's never too late to start exploring our Slovenian heritage. To hear that my potica recipe is like your grandmother's--that makes me feel really good! Happy holidays!

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  18. My grandparents lived on the east side then moved to Chardon. The last name was Kokoska. They were from Czechoslovakia. Nothing better than Slovak food! So many fond memories...loved holiday baking! So glad I found your blog!

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    1. Thanks for the kind words, Cyndi! Yes, lots of overlap between Slovenian and Slovak food!

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  19. Hello Blair, Milka Modic in USA. Started using internet in about 2007, finding LOTS of interesting things come up, and notice that "the robots" are sending me more and more links to Slovenian blogs and posts. Born to Slov parents in Austria during DP Camp days, lived mostly in Wisconsin, some in IL, but recently in NC for job. Have not found any Slovenians in NC but was completely surrounded in WI and IL with Slovenians. Just found you today. Visited Cleveland Slovenians in my 20s (am now 67) and used to get the Slovenian newspaper (now defunct and only issued in English) sent to me from Cleveland. Nice that you are enjoying a journey into discovery of your past links. milka ludmillamodic@yahoo.com

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    1. Hello Milka--thanks for writing! I hope you enjoy the blog. Our journeys have overlapped. I've lived in Cleveland, Chicago, NC, back to Chicago, and now in California. It's funny that I too could have been "completely surrounded" by Slovenians when I lived in Cleveland/Chicago--if only I'd been interested enough to look around!

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  20. Hi, we made potica yesterday for the fourth time in a couple of years. My girlfriend's cousin has been teaching us. The baked loaves do not come out with a nice brown color. They come out a little gray. Are we using too much flour when we are kneading the dough? I put some melted butter on the loaves after they came out of the oven and that make the color more brown. I remember my aunt's loaves from 40 years ago that were just beautiful. Thanks, Jim

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    1. Hi Jim, thanks for stopping by! Gray--that is a new one! Don't know what to think about that. The more common problem (for me, at least) is that the crust gets too brown before the inside is done. The solution to that is to lower the heat and/or cover with foil to prevent burning.

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  21. Why is my potica splitting on the side.

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    1. Hi Joan
      Answered your question earlier today but here it is again: Not to worry- it happens to the best of us! See my final post in 2015, a review and reflection of the year in potica. I include a photo of one of my own "side-splitting" loaves. I suspect it might be caused by excess honey or a too soft dough. But it seems to taste just fine, so don't be concerned. I have read on other sites that many folks have the same problem.

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  22. Hi! My Grandmother was from Czech roots and made the best nut roll I ever ate. I have tried to make it many times but it never came out as well. I am anxious to try this recipe. My children and nieces and nephew do not care for nut roll but I am going to make the chocolate filling with ground nuts which will not be as noticeable and I think they are going to love it! Thanks!

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    1. Thanks for writing! Yes, Czech nut roll is very similar. I tasted something at a kibbutz-run hotel on the shores of Lake Kineret/The Sea of Galilee that I was sure was potica. When I asked, the waitress just shrugged and said they called in "cinnamon bread." Turns out the kibbutz was settled by Jewish refugees from Czechoslovakia in the 1930s. Then it all made sense!

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  23. I grew up in northern Ohio. My grandparents were straight from Yugoslavia. I loved all the foods my grandma made. Unfortunately she and my aunt who was also a great cook, died before I was old enough to really begin cooking. I do have many recipe books from them so I am trying to learn. LOVE potica and especially apple strudel! Thanks for the memories.

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    1. Thanks for writing, Jeanne! What recipes books did you inherit from your family?

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  24. Blair, I just found you online while researching potica for my own blog, http://www.grandmasicebox.com

    I love your blog and am very inspired by what you've written. Looking forward to following you!

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    1. Thanks for getting in touch, Jennifer, and for the kind words. Just looked at your very cool blog--lots of Cleveland memories there. (I remember those Higbee stoves :-) Nice to connect!

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  25. Zdravo! I found your blog while investigating Slovenian language classes in the Bay Area. I'm also from Cleveland but living in the Bay Area. I've been studying Slovenian for about 10 months now. Thanks for blogging!

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    1. Pozdravljena, Alyssa! So nice to hear from you! Where are you in the SF Bay Area? And how are you studying Slovenian? As far as I know, the only classes are the ones I have taken for the past 3 sessions at the Slovenian Hall in SF. Would be happy to connect and tell you more about it. Feel free to e-mail me at bkilpatrick (at) mac (dot) com--or through the blog.

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