The Holm Family Cookbook started several years ago as an effort to preserve the recipes of the matriarchs of the Holm Family, Ida Jessen Holm and her daughter-in-law, Ione Teeter Holm. It all began in 1997, when Ione Holm was 91 years old and her granddaughter, Nancy Calhoun Mueller, pulled an article out of the July issue of Family Circle magazine entitled, "Rescuing Family Recipes," and a sub-article, "Heritage Cookbook How-To’s." Nancy knew the Holm family was on the verge of losing many of Ione’s recipes and the Holm family traditions. So Nancy searched through Ione’s recipe box and cookbooks and began compiling a collection of her recipes and the recipes Ida Holm had passed on to Ione. After Ione’s death in February of 1998, Nancy began in earnest to reach out to extended family members, letting them know that she wanted to coordinate a family cookbook and asked them to send her photos, stories, and recipes.
From tattered cards in time-worn recipe boxes, hastily scribbled notes, and emails from friends, the recipes in this cookbook arrived from the kitchens of five generations of Holm women and close friends of the family. Realizing that the project was too large to finish on her own, Nancy enlisted the help of family members Susie Calhoun and Merry Calhoun Carter (sisters), Tilli Holm Calhoun (mother), Wendy Neely Howe (cousin), and Patsy Holm Neely (aunt). And, when the collection of photos, stories, and recipes became too overwhelming for all of them, a book designer, Carol Salvin, was hired to piece it all together.
From its humble beginnings 9 years ago, this group of dedicated women have self-published a 240 page illustrated cookbook. The cookbook is dedicated to Ione and Ida Holm and themed around their Danish and Western heritage and traditions, and the Livermore community’s history and culture.