Retired school teacher Elaine Daugherty can’t complain too much about her former career: She said she taught respectful students with cooperative parents, enjoyed camaraderie with the youngsters and loved the subjects she taught.
To top it off, her former colleagues provided her with enough recipes to fill a binder: Spaghetti-style lasagna, various salads, toffee bars, coconut cake, broccoli casserole, turtle cake, sticky buns and snowball cake are some of the them.
It’s hard to go wrong with snowball cake, this week’s featured recipe.
“It’s easier (to make) than pie, it’s attractive and it goes over,” Daugherty said. “Everybody likes it.”
Many people like soup as well, including Daugherty.
“I love to make soup, soups are my forte” she said. “I could eat it 365 days out of the year.”
The aroma wins her over, and Daugherty said she considers soup one of her comfort foods. She can fix chicken soup with cous cous, a potato-based soup with brown sausage and vegetable soup.
“My husband used to say ‘My wife makes the best vegetable soup,’” Daugherty said.
Her husband, former Norwalk Donald “Knute” Daugherty, retired in 1984 and died in 1999. She has three grown children: Susan, who lives in Sandusky, Pam, a Suburban Chicago resident and Tim, who lives in Texas.
All cook, as does her brother Wayne, who lives in Tennessee. He just visited Daugherty for 10 days, and cooked for her. He made steamed crab legs (“It was heavenly”), linguini with olive oil and garlic, (“Oh it was good”), garlic bread and steaks, which her brother cooked on a grill.
“I told him this morning ‘I hate to see you go,’” Daugherty said, half joking. She added she has some leftovers.
Daugherty cooks for others as well: In the past two years, at different times, she’s invited five couples over for a meal of chili and three types of soup: chicken, vegetable as well as broccoli and cheese. In addition, on St. Patrick’s Day for the last several years, Daugherty has fixed corned beef and cabbage.
When Daugherty taught, she brought Goldfish crackers for her students if they excelled in the classroom.
“My goal was for the students to excel or to work to the best of their ability,” she said, adding every student has different strengths.
Daugherty taught 27 years in Huron County, retiring in 1992. She taught fifth-grade remedial reading in the Monroeville Local School District as well as seventh- and eighth-grade history and science.
Two of Daugherty’s ex-students were officers Kevin Schaffer and Ty Keefer of the Norwalk Police Department, as well as Curt Stang, a Norwalk firefighter.
“I loved her as a teacher,” Stang said. “As long as you did what you were supposed to do she was great.”