Here’s the recipe collection of a lifetime—my lifetime!

Every recipe is a memory of an era…a place…an event…a person. So when I cook I savor the memory surrounding the recipe as much as I do its delicious flavor. - Maralyn "Annie" Mathias


A 50 Year Collection of Recipes from Around the World over 550 Recipes


Annies Journey Home
Appetizers & Snacks
Main Dishes
Side Dishes

Meet Annie

Okay!  If my name is Maralyn, how did my book get called “Around the World with Annie”?  Because my Grandma called me Annie, and she’s the reason I love to cook.

I loved my Grandma Mabel intensely and she was a fabulous cook.

As a little girl I stood beside her on the farm as she plucked the chickens then magically turned them into succulent fried chicken.  I watched her make glazed donuts, fried eggs, moist chocolate cake and dozens of other things. She’s in heaven now but I’m eternally grateful for this passion that she passed on to me.

It was because of her that my senses were always ready for new taste experiences. And that served me well when we lived overseas for 19 years—twelve years in Belgium and 7 years in Finland. During those years we were often with people from around the globe, and I was always ready to sample the new flavors that they brought to the table. It’s probably also because of my grandma that I have loved cooking with my own children and grandchildren. We have two sons.  Paul married Kristin and David married Rhonda.  Together they have given me five grandchildren–and a sixth one is on the way! So the recipes on this site are my lifetime collection because every time I ate something I loved, no matter where I was, I was relentless in finding out who made it and in tracking down the recipe. You are the recipient of my tenacity!

Jim and I have been married 40 years so he’s been a very patient taster of all of my newly discovered recipes.   He’s also suffered through the tweaking process that accompanied each one.  A patient man!  At a certain point he said, “Okay Honey, you have lots of great recipes!  Let’s not try to find any more new ones.  Just make the ones we know and love.”  A wise man, too!

As you try the recipes, I invite you to add your own comments and suggestions. Then rate the recipe by clicking on the number of stars you would give it. You can do that here at We encourage you to visit this site where we have all of the recipes listed for you to use at your convenience. This collection of recipes is available in a book that you can order on this site. In the book there are some additional features:  for instance a glossary of ingredients (to help my friends from other cultures). There are also menu suggestions and a country-by-country listing of the international recipes.  If you have the book notice that many of the titles are underlined.  Those are my “go-to” recipes. Many people also love the binding–it’s a flop-open spiral.  One of my favorite parts of the book is the stories about our overseas experiences (funny stories—true stories) that became the section dividers. The book is not very expensive and it makes a great gift!

Plus if you’re a Weight Watchers member, like I used to be, I want to tell you that I calculated the points for every recipe; you’ll see them as “units” at the bottom of each recipe.  It took me about a year but I did it and I’m proud of it!

As you can probably tell, this has been a super fun project that has consumed lots of time during these past five years! (smile)

Happy Cooking!

Maralyn Ann (McNaughton) Mathias


P.S. In June of 2007 I was diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease).  This has been a challenge for sure, and now in order to cook I need help from someone who will squeeze the garlic, juice the lemons, and open the cans for me.  But the remarkable thing about these months is that God has been closer than my skin. If you’d like to read the blog where I’m journaling my spiritual journey through this illness, you’re welcome to have a look. 

The site is: we have also printed a copy of Maralyns Blog into a paperback that you can purchase and give as a gift to someone along with the cookbook or individually. We know the stories in the cookbook as well as the story of Maralyns journey home to be with her Lord will touch you and or your family greatly. 


In Remembrance of Maralyn Ann (McNaughton) Mathias

Maralyn peacefully left this earth to meet her Lord and Savior. Her ability to swallow had stopped shortly after completing the paragraphs below. Nevertheless, she remained alert and even communicating with her husband, Jim, and other family members until her final 20 minutes of life. Her last breath was drawn at 10:35 a.m. on Sunday, January 4. She was 59 years old.


Thirsty for Jesus

[Written early on New Years Day 2009]

Water is essential to life, and even though food will no longer propel down my throat, I’m still drinking. Amazingly, I don’t feel hungry … but I am thirsty, and I’m drinking as much as I possibly can. Without divine intervention, I will get to heaven some time within the month. 

These 18 months since my ALS diagnosis have been the worst and best of my life. Worst because of my deteriorating body … best because of my relationship with Christ. 

And I’m beginning to see my friendship with Jesus like water when I’m thirsty … so essential to life. He is the real “living water” referred to in John 4:1-26. 

I have many lovely friends, but I’ve never before known a Friend SO close. Every day we have smiled, laughed, and cried together. And he has comforted me. I’ve asked his opinion, and he has nodded one way or the other. His close friendship has given me many new perspectives on this earthly life that I had never considered before. He’s been closer than my skin.

This intimate friendship was essential to the writing of this blog. He nudged me and said, “Don’t plan ahead” (totally contrary to my nature). “Let me teach you as we go. I will pick the topics. Just trust me! I’ll show you what to write.”

Let me tell you, for a “Type A” girl, that was tough … at first … until I saw that he really would supply the ideas and insights. It’s been an amazing ride. So if you’ve been blessed by this blog, thank him!

The only thing that makes me sad is realizing that this intimate friendship with him has been available to me all throughout my life, and I never chose it until now. I missed it … big-time! I guess I was always so busy with my lists, projects, plans and events that I was too occupied to be open to such an idea. Oh, I did my devotions, but so often because I knew I “should.” That’s a different thing. Now I long to be with him, to feel his hug, to hear his voice, to see his smile. It’s so different.

Here’s a piece of motherly advice: Don’t wait until you have a terminal illness to seek a true friendship with Jesus. He’s ready! It takes setting aside some less important things. It takes listening. It takes openness. But it’s so worth it! I hope you become literally thirsty for Jesus.

Soon I’ll be in heaven, and it will be great to see the scenery, gardens and mansions. It will be great to hear the singing and see what’s on the banquet tables. BUT! I can tell you, the thing I’m most looking forward to is meeting my Best Friend face-to-face for the very first time. I’m trying to imagine the thrill.…