Q: Which Courier-News reporter first was published in her church cookbook?
A: That was me -- Readers' Reporter Emily McFarlan. At age 7. In "Home Cooking," a cookbook published by St. James Lutheran Church in Western Springs.
As I remember it, my mom had pulled out the ol' typewriter (Yes, typewriter. I promise I'm not that old. My parents just aren't that hip to technology. Which is why I took it on as a personal calling.) and hacked out recipes for lemon squares and applesauce and yogurt pancakes and taffy apple salad and a cottage cheese JELL-O mold. Nothing unusual -- my parents had met working at a newspaper, and my mom was a typesetter. I have lots of little "newspapers" I typed up on that typewriter, including comic strips I'd drawn and other articles I'd clipped and glued to the paper.
So I decided to type up a recipe, too. All in lowercase letters. With questionable punctuation and subject-verb agreement. For something called "ham roll-ups." I kid you not.
Here it is: My first published work. Feel free to steal that this evening for an after-work snack. Yum.
HAM ROLL UP S
medium thick ham slices cream cheese spread cheese on ham slices. youhave a hamroll up's.
Missing from this recipe is the key step where you roll up the piece of ham with the cream cheese inside. Because, you know, "ham roll-ups" is not just a clever name. But you gotta love that little flourish at the end: "You have a ham roll-up(s)." Taa-daa!
What about you? What was your first foray into your chosen field? And does embarrassing evidence exist to this very day?
-- Emily McFarlan, Readers' Reporter