Hildur's mother, who emigrated from Sweden around the turn of the century, gave this recipe to her daughter years ago. Hildur uses it for roasting all kinds of meat, including the Thanksgiving turkey.
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon celery seed
1/8 teaspoon sweet basil (for beef, lamb, or pork), or 1/8 teaspoon sage (for chicken or turkey)
Meat for roasting
Combine seasonings in a small bowl. Wash and dry the meat. Rub the seasonings onto the meat; for chicken or turkey, also rub some inside the bird. Place meat on a roasting rack in a large pan and place prunes around it. Add water and half an onion to help make the gravy brown and tasty. Roast meat uncovered until tender, making sure water does not boil away. Serve the prunes as a treat and use the juice for gravy.