Twylah (Vander Vorst) Hollaar and her husband, Eldon, tried living in a city once, but her husband was not happy there and they moved back to the Pollock area.
When the Hollaars were first married, they lived in Bismarck, N.D., where Twylah worked as a registered nurse at the Bismarck Hospital, but Eldon didn’t care for the city. In 1958 they moved back to the homestead of Twylah’s family.
She grew up in Westfield, N.D., which is now a small, unorganized town northeast of Pollock. Twylah and her siblings grew up in the house built by her grandfather Joe Vander Vorst. It was in that home that she and Eldon raised their six children-Kevin Hollaar, Jamestown; Audrey Bork, Ashley, N.D.; Wanda Larson, Sioux Falls; Karen Esposito, Gorham, Maine; Greg Hollaar, Hartford; and Mark Hollaar, Fargo, N.D.
Twylah and Eldon, who are both of Dutch decent, lived on the homestead until 1999 when they moved into Pollock. On the farm, she was able to stay home with the kids.
Twylah said she learned how to cook from taking Home Economics at the Strasburg High School and from her mom.
Raising six kids in the 1960’s was busy with the daily operation of the farming business. They started a dairy barn in 1984.
“Life was good on the farm, it taught the kids responsibility and taught them how to work,” said Twylah. “Our children went to the county school in Westfield through eighth grade and then attended and graduated from high school in Pollock.”
When the kids were growing up on the farm, one of their favorite memories was coming home from school to Twylah’s fresh-baked buns and caramel rolls. It was an especially favorite treat for the whole family.
While living on the farm she liked to garden, filling the freezer with garden goodies and canning her vegetables. Once Twylah and Eldon moved to town, she decided it was easier to buy all her vegetables from the store.
Twylah remembers one cooking incident that left a colorful mark on the farmhouse.
“We had received a pressure cooker as a wedding gift, (she still uses it today) but when we were first married my sister-in-law and I made split pea soup while the men were hunting,” she laughed. It blew it’s top and we had split pea soup everywhere except in the bowls.”
Their youngest son, Mark, is now in charge of the farm. The family still likes to have their Thanksgiving holiday and family reunions there.
As the family continued to grow, the house on the farm couldn’t hold everyone. Mark went to work and remodeled the barn. With the hayloft turned into a kitchen and living area filled with couches that turn into beds, there is once again room for the whole family.
Twylah and Eldon have been married for 60 years and attend church in Westfield. In her spare time she likes to crochet, embroidery and put picture puzzles together.
Twylah Hollaar’s Recipes
2 cups scalded milk
1 cup sugar
2 cups cold water
1 tsp. salt
1 cup vegetable oil (Crisco)
Soak two packages of yeast in 1 cup warm water. Add yeast to first ingredients. Beat in 8 to 9 cups flour, 2 cups at a time. Let rise until doubled. Punch down. Let rise again and mold into buns. After all buns are on pan, punch down again with fingers. Let buns rise 1 to 1 1/2 hours. Bake at 350 degrees 12 to 15 minutes. Makes six dozen.
Peanut Butter Bars
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup margarine
3/4 cup flour
3/4 cup oatmeal
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. soda
Combine ingredients and press in 9×13 pan and bake at 350 degrees for 15 minutes. Combine 3/4 cup white syrup and 1/2 cup sugar. Bring to a boil, add 3/4 cup peanut butter. Spread on baked crust. Cool. Frost with melted one-half package butterscotch chips and one-half package chocolate chips.
Famous Lemon Pie
3 Tbsp. cornstarch
1 1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup lemon juice
1 Tbsp. grated lemon rind
3 eggs, separated
1 1/2 cup boiling water
3 Tbsp. sugar
1/4 tsp. cream of tartar
Put cornstarch, sugar, lemon juice and rind, 3 egg yolks and water in saucepan. Cook until clear. Put in a baked crust 9-inch pie pan. Allow to cool. Beat the egg whites that are room temperature, 3 Tbsp. sugar and 1/4 tsp. cream of tarter until firm and spread on pie. Place in oven at 375 degrees until meringue is light brown.