Thursday, December 30, 2010

Hot Dog Cheesies and Vegetable Soup

Betty Crocker Recipe Card Library [1971]

70's. We meet again.

Hot Dog Cheesies
Drop into a saucepan of boiling water (2 cups).....8 frankfurters
Lower heat; cover and simmer 5 to 8 minutes.
Spread 1 side of.................................................8 slices bread
with..................................................................soft butter
....................................................................prepared mustard
Place bread slices on baking sheet.
Top each slice with............1 slice process American cheese

Place a frankfurter on top of each cheese slice. Fold over to make a triangle shape. Fasten with wooden picks. Melt in small pan over low heat
.............................................1/4 cup butter

Brush each triangle with the melted butter.

Set oven control at broil and/or 550 degrees F.
Broil sandwiches with tops 4 to 5 inches from heat about 2 minutes or until golden brown. 8 servings.

Serve with mugs of piping hot vegetable soup.

Verdict: I made this right after the cocky leeky, because we were hungry and sad. I like hot dogs, I like cheese, I like bread, I like melted butter, what could go wrong? Answer: really not very much. They are absolutely fine. The melted butter soaked into the bread and made it delicious, and the hot dogs got a little burned (as hot dogs should properly be). The only fly in the ointment was the cheese. I remember liking American cheese as a child, but it is kind of awful. Husband said it was the worst thing I had asked him to eat as part of this project, and that is saying something! Feels kind of plastic-y in the mouth. While eating it, I also recalled that we called it Barbie doll cheese, because of its resemblance to melted fashion dolls. Were the cheese to be replaced with, you know, cheese, these would be really good, actually. The serving size is accurate, though. One of these is enough. After eating two of them, one feels slightly wrong.

Also, canned vegetable soup is terrible.

After cocky leeky, hot dog cheesies, and canned vegetable soup, we felt we deserved ice cream. Later that night, I felt ill. The next day, I ate American cheese straight, because it sounded delicious at the time. And it was. Weird.

Feel free to comment on how nice Husband is. Because he is.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Betty Crocker's Prize Sheep

Last installment of Betty Crocker's New Cooking for Two Cookbook [1972]! I hope you have enjoyed them.

Children, I'm sorry to say that your pet prize sheep, Ramsey, got a little sick while you were at school. We tried everything, but we just couldn't save him. We had to take off the fleece so we could see what the problem was better, then your mother spent minutes and minutes rubbing an herbal salve onto every inch of him. Finally, we had to amputate his legs. Because of the illness. Didn't work, so we had to keep amputating. In the end, I'm afraid he just didn't make it.

Lucky for us, and for him, we have this home cremating machine, so we could send him off in honor. He should be just about done now.... oh, look at that. Terrible! Just didn't get hot enough. He's not burned at all! Just a little... crispy... Tell you what though, we can put him here and make it like a Viking funeral! We'll just place some of his favorite things around him so he can have them in the happy sheep afterlife, where he eats tasty grass and frolics in daisies all day long. You know how much he loved cabbage. And... noodles. And mother's spicy raisin cupcakes and pineapple-cheese salad.

Barbecued Lamb Riblets
Hot Buttered Noodles
Panned Cabbage
Pineapple-Cheese Salad
Spicy Raisin Cupcakes

***Thanks to Mitchell and Webb. :D (warning: mild language)***

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Cocky Leeky... soup?

A Plain Cookery Book for the Working Poor [1852]

Ah, Charles Elme Francatelli, LATE MAÎTRE D'HÔTEL AND CHIEF COOK TO HER MAJESTY THE QUEEN. He had such good intentions. He was so concerned for the welfare of the poor people, he wrote them a whole cookbook. His Yorkshire Pie-Clates were quite tasty. His No. 3 Economical Pot Liquor Soup, less so. Which dish shall break the tie, perhaps redeeming his cookbook for the deserving poor on this, Christmas Day?

Oh. Oh dear.

Cocky Leeky.
I hope that at some odd times you may afford yourselves an old hen or cock; and when this occurs, this is the way in which I recommend that it be cooked, viz.:—First pluck, draw, singe off the hairs, and tie the fowl up in a plump shape; next, put it into a boiling-pot with a gallon of water, and a pound of Patna rice, a dozen leeks cut in pieces, some peppercorns and salt to season; boil the whole very gently for three hours, and divide the fowl to be eaten with the soup, which will prove not only nourishing but invigorating to the system.

Verdict: Just... just give me a moment. Okay. All right. Don't make this. Really, really don't make this. Rice... was not meant to be boiled for 3 hours. It is an abomination. There was too much stuff for it to be a soup, so instead it is a mucusy sludge. It is a strange, squiggly feeling, watching it slither off one's flatware. The rice/leek mucus does not taste very much like chicken, more of faintly onioned watery rice.

The chicken was just fine, but had the distressing tendency to sink beneath the surface of the rice/leek mucus like an alligator in a swamp. Every time I tried to get a good bite of chicken, it was sucked into the mucus and slimed.

Now that that's over with, hey! Look at this cool leek!

It's curly inside! Neato! Have you ever seen a leek do this?

Now go. Enjoy Christmas! And if you don't celebrate Christmas, celebrate the 25th of December by not making this.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Sourdough Pancakes

I know, I know, you're thinking "Hey, those are just pancakes. I know about pancakes." But wait! Hold on to your phaeton, because I am about to lay down for you some knowledge. Knowledge about sourdough.

*Sourdough has been used for ages by many world cultures to raise bread.
*It is basically slow-acting liquid yeast.
*Not all sourdough tastes the same. Each culture has its own unique taste. You have probably tasted the San Francisco strain, which is sort of tangy. There's a Bahrain strain that tastes of almost nothing. I don't get the point, but people who hate the taste of sourdough like it.
*It is like having a pet [or, technically, billions of pets] that isn't messy, smells nice, and periodically gives you fresh bread.
*It self-replicates if you feed it. After you take some out for a recipe, stir in some flour and water. Result: infinite sourdough starter. It is basically like owning a tribble.
*You can buy starters online, get some from a friend, order it for free from here, or grow your own. I got mine from the Pioneer Foodie.

In the 70's, as part of the get-back-to-nature Mother Earth sort of movement, sourdough got a little spike of popularity. And for good reason.

Sourdough Pancakes
2 cups sourdough starter
2 T. sugar
4 T. oil
1 egg
1/2 t. salt
1 t. baking soda

Mix sourdough starter, sugar, egg, and oil. Dilute baking soda in a little bit of warm water, and stir in gently just before you are ready to cook the pancakes. Cook the pancakes.

Husband said these are his new favorite pancakes. I had to add chopped blackberries so they would not float away, so light and fluffy were they.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Merry Christmas to mothers!

This is from a recipe booklet from Coldspot Freezers from 1952.

Click to enbiggen

Now Mother Can join in the Christmas Morning Fun
Thanks to her Coldspot Freezer, mother is no longer shackled to the kitchen while the rest of the family enjoys Christmas fun. The day-long labor of preparing holiday feasts--long taken for granted as woman's lot in life--is now a thing of the past. Mother can have any holiday meal prepared, by simple easy tasks spaced out as suggested by the typical schedule at the left. On Christmas morning--with Christmas dinner store away in her Coldspot Freezer, all ready to cook and serve--a worry-free mother can join whole-heartedly in the gay celebration around the tree.

Summary of Aforementioned Schedule:
*July: Freeze peas and carrots
*August: Freeze melon ball salad
*September: Make and freeze candied sweet potatoes
*October: Make and freeze mince pies
*November: Freeze turkey
*December: Make and freeze rolls

All right, I know, I should wax cynical about who on earth starts cooking Christmas dinner in July, and about what poor mother starts prepping Christmas dinner at the crack of dawn Christmas morning instead of enjoying with the kids, but honestly... this just sounds like a fantastic idea. I mean, sure, 5-6 months ahead of time is excessive, but on the whole, this is genius.

Plus, look at that family. My heart is all soft and syrupy just looking at them. Aren't they adorable? Golly gosh. Also, I want that dressing gown. It is fancy.

In the Christmas spirit, as my gift to you... Melon Ball Salad.

Melon Ball Salad.
Freeze watermelon and honeydew melon in balls. Arrange on lettuce leaf when partly thawed. Red and green melon balls make an attractive holiday salad.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Venyson Y-bake A-nother manere

This is the final part in my three-part Medieval Venison series. Hurrah and huzzah! This week's recipe is Venyson Y-bake A-nother manere, from somewhere in the 1400's. This is also known as a pie with venison in it. Be sure to visit Gode Cookery, it is a great site for medieval cooking.

Now, there is a great deal of debate as to whether medieval pie crust was simply a hard, inedible container for cooking foods inside, which one would discard or give to poor people after one had scooped out the good stuff, or was delicious and edible as today's pie crusts are. The problem arises from there being no pastry recipes from the time, as it was assumed that cooks already knew how to make it.

However, since I am a time traveler, I can now settle this once and for all. The answer is: it depends. On some occasions it is one, and on some occasions it is the other. There. Done.

For this recipe, I combined two recipes. I also decided to use a non-delicious pie crust recipe that consisted of 1.) flour and 2.) water.

That was after it was baked. Fat is important to browning.

Venyson Y-bake.
Take hoghes of Venyson, & parboyle hem in fayre Water an Salt; & whan þe Fleyssche is fayre y-boylid, make fayre past, & cast þin Venyson þer-on: & caste a-boue an be-neþe, pouder Pepir, Gyngere, & Salt, & þan sette it on þe ouyn, & lat bake, & serue forth.

Venison Bake- Revised
Take hocks of venison and parboil them in fair water and salt; and when the flesh is fair boiled, make fair paste, and cast the venison thereon; and cast above and beneath, powder pepper, ginger, and salt, and then set it on the oven, and let bake, and serve forth.

Venison Bake- Further Revised
Take hocks of venison and parboil them in water and salt, and when it is boiled, make pastry dough, put the venison in it. Sprinkle with pepper, ginger, and salt, cover with more pastry, bake it, and serve it.

A-nother manere.
Take fayre porke y-broylid, & grind it smal with yolks of Eyroun; þan take Pepir, Gyngere, & grynd it smal, & melle it with-al, & a lytel hony, & floryssche þin cofns with-ynne & with-owte, & hele hem with þin ledys, & late hem bake, & serue forth.

Another Manner- Revised
Take fair pork broiled, and grind it small with yolks of eggs; then take pepper, ginger, and grind it small, and mix it withal, and a little honey, and flourish the coffins within and without, and [?] then with the lids, and let them bake, and serve forth.

Another Manner- Further Revised
Take nice pork, broiled, and chop it up with egg yolks, then mix in pepper, ginger, and a little honey and put in a pie crust, cover it with more pie crust, bake it, and serve it.

It was okay. The spices and honey were actually the best thing about it, the meat was incredibly dry and chewy. The crust was not delicious, but the serfs seem happy to have meat-flavored baked library paste rather than non-meat flavored baked library paste. I can't recommend this one. It's just dry and boring.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Dreamsicle Trifle

Just this once, I will tell you some things about the future. Usually I would not do so because of the terrible, horrifying consequences that could result from disrupting the time line, but this dessert is really good. So keep it under your hats, but right after the cupcake phase has waned, puddings will rise. The recent history of above-average cakes and puddings will then lead naturally into a resurgence of the trifle.

I will let you in on this particular trifle recipe both because it is fantastically delicious, and because it seems to date back to right now. So that's all right!

Dreamsicle Trifle
2 large cans mandarin oranges
1 small pkg. orange gelatin powder
1 pint orange sherbet
1 cup whipping cream, whipped (no sugar or vanilla, just whipped.)
1 angel food cake, cubed
whipped topping

Drain 1 cup liquid from mandarin oranges. Bring to a boil in the microwave. Add gelatin, and stir to dissolve. Cool until just warm. Add orange sherbet, and mix until melted. Gently fold in whipped cream. It is okay if there are uneven streaks, just don't smash those fluffy whipped cream bubbles. Put half the cake cubes in the trifle dish (or other dish that is not as fancy), cramming them together so they will stay in a tight layer. Pour half the orange mixture over the top, cover with a thin layer of whipped topping, and top with half the oranges. On top of the oranges, put the remaining of the cake cubes in, pour over the remaining orange mixture, cover with the remaining oranges, and cover with whipped topping. Refrigerate.

Bonus Garnish Tip:
For attractive orange curls, use a tool like the one shown below (or skill with a knife) to make a long strip of orange peel.

Wind it around a drinking straw, secure the ends with tape, and freeze overnight.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

The Delights of Christmas Time

This is from A Woman's Favorite Cook Book [1890's-1900's] , which I have made food from before. Isn't this gorgeous?

Click to enbiggen

I mean, I never thought I'd want to dig into a whole pig, but suddenly it looks so festive and enticing! I also love the little boy's sailor suit, the long baby dress, the candles on the tree... although that little girl should probably watch where that baby's hands are reaching. This could end in tears.

Look at that selection of gorgeous, beautiful food though!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Devonshire Junket II

Do you remember Attempt #1 at Devonshire Junket? I failed miserably. But I shall not be defeated! Upon careful reading of the directions, I discovered that it doesn't work if you use canned milk. Which I was, oddly enough. It was on sale. Please do not judge me.

From A New System of Domestic Cookery, Formed Upon Principles of Economy, and Adapted to the Use of Private Families [1807].

Devonshire Junket.
Put warm milk into a bowl; turn it with rennet; then put some scalded cream, sugar, and cinnamon, on the top, without breaking the curd.

Not actually very hard to find at the grocery store.

More Helpful Directions:
2 cups milk
1 Junket Rennet tablet
1 T. cold water

1. Have 4 individual dessert dishes ready.
2. Heat milk to lukewarm while stirring (110 degrees F.). Dissolve rennet tablet in water by crushing. Add to warm milk and stir for a FEW SECONDS ONLY. Pour at once, while still liquid, into dessert dishes.
3. Let stand UNDISTURBED for 10 minutes. Chill.
4. Drizzle cream over and sprinkle with brown sugar and cinnamon. Don't stir it in, leave it alone and eat it by spoonfuls. The more the curd is broken, the more the structure breaks down and releases whey, looking unsightly.

Verdict: This is totally easy! Really, about the same difficulty level as Jello. As long as you don't use canned milk. And it is pretty delicious, too! It is sort of like a cross between Jello and custard. I did this a couple times more, once with vanilla mixed into the milk, which was delicious, and and once with orange flavoring. And yet, my favorite is still brown sugar and cream. Yum. An accurate flavoring for the time period would be rosewater or orange blossom water*, which I think would be delightful, and intend to try.

If you're having a Regency party, or just in the mood for a unique dessert, you should try this. It is super easy and unique.

*Which, I have discovered, can be found near the drink mixers at the grocery store.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Potage of Venison

The English and French Cook [1674]

Now for the second part of my venison series!

This would probably make poor Mrs. Kellogg cry.

Potage of Venison.
Take a Haunch of Venison, and cut it into six pieces, and place them in the bottom of a Pan or Pot, then put in no more Water than will cover it, let it boil, then scum it, after that add to it a good quantity of whole Pepper; when it is half boiled, put in four whole Onions, Cloves, and large Mace, some sliced Ginger, Nutmeg, three or four faggots of sweet Herbs,

I had no faggots of sweet herbs. :'(

let it boil till the Venison be very tender, and a good part of the broth be wasted; after this pour out the broth from the meat into a Pipkin, keep your Venison hot in the same Pot by adding other hot broth unto it; then take a couple of red-Beet roots, having very well parboil'd them before, cut them into square pieces as big as a shilling, and put them into the broth which is in your Pipkin, and let them boil till they are very tender, add unto the boiling four Anchovies minced,

Yes, I really did. For science.

then dish up your Venison on Sippets of French-bread, then pour on your broth, so much as will near-upon fill the Dish, then take your roots by themselves, and toss them in a little drawn Butter, and lay them all over the Venison; if the Beets be good, it will make the broth red enough, which you must have visible round about the Dish sides, but if it prove pale, put to it some Saunders: This is a very savory Potage.


The peculiar blend of flavors (to modern taste buds) makes it taste oddly of pickled beets with red meat. I could taste the anchovies not at all, which was actually kind of a let-down after being brave enough to throw them in. It was so very dry and tough, but that is not necessarily the recipe's fault. When simmering meat, the longer you simmer it, the tougher it gets until a certain point, when it gets more and more tender. Unfortunately, I was impatient and impetuous, qualities which lead to the ruination of many dishes. If you are an impatient and impetuous type who wishes to recreate this dish, I highly recommend the use of a slow cooker.

The quality of this dish which occasioned the most comment was the color. The beets turned the sauce a deep, rich, gorgeous red. Disturbingly, however, it was also precisely the color of fresh blood. When poured over the meat, the color made it seem like it was almost raw. The speedy absorption caused by the dryness of the meat made it look like it was oozing blood, a quality you cannot fully appreciate in the pictures. In person, it looks almost precisely like very very rare meat swimming in coagulating blood.

Not bad though, in the end, if you like pickled beets. Which I do. I can recommend it as long as you 1.) take the time (or the slow cooker) to cook the meat until it is tender, ignoring my bad example and 2.) are not a person turned off by the description above.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Betty Crocker's Gelatin Foolishness

More from Betty Crocker's New Cooking for Two Cookbook! [1972]

Ah, an arrangement of complementary foods nestling together harmoniously. Gelatin, pears, tomatoes, radishes, and peas, all melded together in a jellied loaf.

Wait a second, back that truck up.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

To roest Veneson/To bake Veneson

A Propre New Book of Cookery [1545]

Readers, both gentle and common, I have for you today roasted venison with sauce, the first in a three-part series about medieval venison, which you can read about in this informative article. "But Jana!" I hear you say. "Where can get venison in case I want to replicate this recipe?" Never fear. I have a list of options:

*Get a hunting license
*Find a friend who hunts
*Buy it from specialty shops for large amounts of cash
*Find a butcher that processes wild game for people. Sometimes people do not come back to pick up their meat, because they no longer want to pay for the service.
*Time travel to medieval England for authentic venison (only recommended if you are a smooth talker, the medieval penalty for poaching the King's deer is a hand or your life).

To bake Veneson.
Take nothing but pepper and salte, but let it have inough, and if the Veneson be lene lard it through with bakon.

To bake Venison- Revised
Take nothing but pepper and salt, but let it have enough, and if the venison be lean, lard it through with bacon.

To bake Venison- Further revised
Sprinkle healthy amounts of salt and pepper on the roast. Lay strips of bacon over the top, and bake until it is done to your liking.

To roest Veneson
Rosted Veneson must have vinegre suger and sinamon and butter boyled upon a chafyng disshe with coles, but the sauce maie not be to tarte and then laie the veneson upon the sauce.

To roest Veneson- Revised
Roasted venison must have vinegar, sugar and cinnamon and butter boiled, upon a chafing dish with coals, but the sauce may not be too tarte, and then lay the venison upon the sauce.

To roest Veneson- Further revised
For a lovely sauce for the baked venison, melt 1/2 cup butter in a pan over low heat. Stir in about 1 t. cinnamon and 1 T. sugar. Add a splash of apple cider vinegar until it is tangy, but not sour. I found about 1 T. worked well. Heat until bubby and hot. Pour into a dish, then serve the venison on top. An even better idea would be to put the venison on a dish and then pour the sauce over the top.

Verdict: I will admit that before making this recipe, I was really disparaging about medieval people's love of sugar and meat together. It sounds wrong. It sounds stupid. But in this recipe, it is soooooooooo right. It's... it's really good. Now that I've had it, I understand why it works so perfectly when it doesn't sound as if it should.

First of all, the bacon. Wild game is very very lean. If you lay bacon across the top before cooking, the fat from the bacon will slooooooooowly melt and be absorbed into the meat, making it more tender and delicious. It is like an automatic basting device.

Second of all, the sauce. It's sort of the same principle as sweet and sour sauce, but better. Instead of a sticky pink goo (which I like, by the way), it is a smooth buttery sauce that absorbs into the meat, which desperately needs a little extra fat. Yes, fat. Don't look at me like that, this is not a cow that has been standing in a field and napping for all its life, this is a wild deer. The vinegar (I used a strawberry infused apple cider vinegar) adds just a little bit of tang. You will have to trust me on this, the sauce was really delicious. Husband said he would very happily eat it on steak, and I think it would go fabulously on pork. Pork goes well with a little bit of sweet, and 21st century pigs are ridiculously lean compared to the pig breeds of the past.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Syrup of Pippins

Remember Sir Kenelm Digby, Knight? Maker of the incomparable Savory Tosted or Melted Cheese, as detailed in his cookbook The closet of Sir Kenelm Digby Knight Opened [1669]? So cool that men wanted him to impregnate their wives?

Well. Another of his rare recipes that is not comprised mainly of booze is his "Syrup of Pippins."

IMG_4722.jpg picture by seshet27

Quarter and Core your Pippins; then stamp them in a Mortar, and strain out the Juyce. Let it settle, that the thick dregs may go to the bottom; then pour off the clear; and to have it more clear and pure, filter it through sucking Paper in a glass funnel. To one pound of this take one pound and an half of pure double refined Sugar, and boil it very gently (scarce simpringly, and but a very little while) till you have scummed away all the froth and foulness (which will be but little) and that it be of the consistence of Syrup. If you put two pound of Sugar to one pound of juyce, you must boil it more & stronglier. This will keep longer, but the colour is not so fine. It is of a deeper yellow. If you put but equal parts of juyce and Sugar, you must not boil it, but set it in a Cucurbite in bulliente Balneo, till all the scum be taken away, and the Sugar well dissolved. This will be very pale and pleasant, but will not keep long.

You may make your Syrup with a strong decoction of Apples in water (as when you make gelly of Pippins) when they are green; but when they are old and mellow, the substance of the Apple will dissolve into pap, by boiling in water.

IMG_4713.jpg picture by seshet27
Look I made a swan!

Take three or four spoonfuls of this Syrup in a large draught of fountain water, or small posset-Ale, pro ardore urinæ to cool and smoothen, two or three times a day.

Verdict: So nice! Instead of stamping pippins [apples] in a mortar, straining them, etc., I bought some apple cider. If you wish to try stamping pippins, you may do it with my blessing. The resulting syrup is delicious, and is exactly like apple-flavored honey. Think of the delightful applications! It is delicious on oatmeal and drizzled on fresh fruit. The beverage is really nice too. Sweet, cold, and appley. Yum. Those that drink ale should try this and report.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Betty Crocker's Festive Culinary Dragon

This festive culinary dragon accompanies a recipe for Chinese Beef and Rice. As much as this does not make sense on first glance, think about it! How handy would it be for wok cookery to be able to shoot super-heated flames out of your nose?

However, upon Googling, it seems that the only reason for a Chinese dragon to shoot fire out of its face would be as a sign of divine displeasure, for punishing evildoers. This can only mean that this dish has incurred the wrath of God.

Chinese Beef and Rice
2/3 cup rice
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 cups boiling water
1 bouillon cube
2 tsp. soy sauce
1 medium onion, chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
1 1/2 cups diced cooked beef

Cook rice in hot oil over medium heat until golden brown. Add salt, water, bouillon cube, and soy sauce. Cover; simmer 20 min. Add rest of ingredients. Cover tightly and simmer 10 min. more. (It may be necessary to add a little more water.) All water should be absorbed at end of cooking time. If not, remove cover and allow liquid to evaporate. 2 generous servings.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Fresh Fruits, Rolled Oats in Cream, Baked Sweet Apples, Macaroni with Cream Sauce, Whole-Wheat Puffs, Stewed Peaches, Caramel Coffee

Once upon a time, there was a man named John Harvey Kellogg. He was a big fan of vegetarianism. He ran the Battle Creek Sanitarium, where one of the treatment methods was feeding patients an all-vegetarian diet. Another method was giving patients yogurt enemas. But let us dwell instead on the fact that he invented Kellogg's Cornflakes there. Meanwhile, his wife wrote a whole cookbook based on the foods they served to the patients.

A Scientific Treatise on Food Substances and their Dietetic Properties, Together with a Practical Explanation of the Principles of Healthful Cookery, and a Large Number of Original, Palatable, and Wholesome Recipes
, by Mrs. E[lla]. E[rvilla]. Kellogg, A.M. [1893], Superintendent of the Sanitarium School of Cookery and of the Bay View Assembly School of Cookery, and Chairman of the World's Fair Committee on Food Supplies, for Michigan

Her titles, they could be a little more snappy.

A little less than ten years ago the Sanitarium at Battle Creek Mich., established an experimental kitchen and a school of cookery under the supervision of Mrs. Dr. Kellogg, since which time, researches in the various lines of cookery and dietetics have been in constant progress in the experimental kitchen, and regular sessions of the school of cookery have been held. . . . During this time, Mrs. Kellogg has had constant oversight of the cuisine of both the Sanitarium and the Sanitarium Hospital, preparing bills of fare for the general and diet tables, and supplying constantly new methods and original recipes to meet the changing and growing demands of an institution numbering always from 500 to 700 inmates.

Baked Sweet Apple Dessert.—Wash and remove the cores from a dozen medium-sized sweet apples, and one third as many sour ones, and bake until well done. Mash through a colander to make smooth and remove the skins. Put into a granite-ware dish, smooth the top with a knife, return to the oven and bake very slowly until dry enough to keep its shape when cut. Add if desired a meringue made by beating the white of one egg with a tablespoonful of sugar. Cut into squares, and serve in individual dishes. The meringue may be flavored with lemon or dotted with bits of colored sugar.

Macaroni with Cream Sauce.—Cook the macaroni as directed in the proceeding [1 C. macaroni] , and serve with a cream sauce prepared by heating a scant pint of rich milk to boiling, in a double boiler. When boiling, add a heaping tablespoonful of flour, rubbed smoothed in a little milk and one fourth teaspoonful of salt. If desired, the sauce may be flavored by steeping in the milk before thickening for ten or fifteen minutes, a slice of onion or a few bits of celery, and then removing with a fork.

Whole-Wheat Puffs.—Put the yolk of an egg into a basin, and beat the white in a separate dish to a stiff froth. Add to the yolk, one half a cupful of rather thin sweet cream and one cupful of skim milk. Beat the egg, cream, and milk together until perfectly mingled and foamy with air bubbles; then add, gradually, beating well at the same time, one pint of wheat berry flour. Continue the beating vigorously and without interruption for eight or ten minutes; then stir in, lightly, the white of the egg. Do not beat again after the white of the egg is added, but turn at once into heated, shallow irons, and bake for an hour in a moderately quick oven. If properly made and carefully baked, these puffs will be of a fine, even texture throughout, and as light as bread raised by fermentation.

Caramel Coffee.—Take three quarts best bran, one quart corn meal, three tablespoonfuls of molasses; mix and brown in the oven like ordinary coffee. For every cup of coffee required, use one heaping tablespoonful of the caramel. Pour boiling water over it, and steep, not boil, for fifteen or twenty minutes.


Fresh Fruits: They were pears.

Baked Sweet Apples: Gahhhhhhh. It is like eating leathery gloop. It was almost inedible. Eventually, we discovered that the trick to eating it is to put a massive scoop of ice cream on top that completely overshadows the apple gloop.

Then, you scrape the ice cream to the side and eat the ice cream, then skoosh the apple flavored leather gloop a little bit so the melted on ice cream drips off and eat that, then toss the apple gloop in the garbage.

After scraping the excess leathery apple gloop up, we then timed it to see how long it would cling to the spatula. It was a full minute and a half. How we laughed! Ladies, gentlemen, this is how we spent Friday night. Donations of moving picture tickets accepted.

Macaroni with Cream Sauce: SO BLAND. Notice there is no salt or seasoning of any kind, just milk (with a bit of onion simmered in it and then removed because that might have flavor), then flavored with paste. And put on another flavorless thing. So... bland blandy bland blanding bland bland blaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaand.

Whole-Wheat Puffs: In theory, these work kind of like whole wheat cream puffs. In practice... let me illustrate this with an informational picture.

We tipped them in the garbage. They clanked.

Stewed Peaches: Well, canned peaches.

Caramel Coffee: I don't drink coffee, so I have no basis of comparison. So, if coffee smells of burned popcorn and tastes like licking rusty iron bars, it's perfect!

All together: Husband feels that, contrary to Mrs. E.E. Kellogg's claims, this menu was specifically formulated to make him insane. He rated this meal as the worst ever. He was right. There is something terribly, terribly wrong with a meal in which you carefully hoard your last bite of oatmeal.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Parsnip Fritters

Every sort of culinary vegetable is much better when freshly gathered and cooked as soon as possible, and , when done, thoroughly drained, and served immediately while hot. ~White House Cook Book: A Selection of Choice Recipes Original and Selected, During a Period of Forty Years' Practical Housekeeping, by Mrs. F. L. Gilette [1887].

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Parsnip Fritters
Boil four or five parsnips; when tender take off the skin and mash them fine; add to them a teaspoonful of wheat flour and a beaten egg; put a tablespoonful of lard or beef drippings in a frying-pan over the fire, add to it a saltspoonful of salt; when boiling hot put in the parsnips; make it in small cakes with a spoon; when one side is a delicate brown turn the other; when both are done take them on a dish, put a very little of the fat in which they were fried over and serve hot. These resemble very nearly the taste of the salsify or oyster plant, and will generally be preferred.

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Verdict: Parsnips look like white carrots, and taste like either carroty potatoes or potatoey carrots. These smelled great when they cooked! Husband sneaky snuck in and nabbed one in the midst of picture taking, so tasty did they smell. The taste, however, was just kind of fine. They tasted exactly like the fried combination of potatoes and carrots. I cannot say how it compares to salsify, however, as I haven't been able to find any salsify.

Salsify is a root vegetable which used to be popular, and apparently tastes like oysters. Thus, it was used to make mock oyster stew a lot. Many more root vegetables used to be popular, actually. Now we're basically down to potatoes, carrots, and onions. Possibly beets, as well. When is the last time you ate salsify, parsnips, rutabagas, Jerusalem artichokes, or turnips?

I figure that when the only vegetables you eat during the winter are those you can store in your root cellar, you want to grow as much of a variety as you can. Since we can get pretty much any vegetable any time we want, a wide variety of root vegetables is no longer a priority.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Amazing Juggling Cow

Another installment from the Betty Crocker New Cooking for Two Cookbook [1972].

Ta daaaaaaaaaa! What a talented cow! But you may ask: why is the cow juggling? For that, let us look to the menu.

Roast Beef au Jus
Browned Potatoes
Tomatoes Vinaigrette
Hot Rolls
Ice Cream with Raspberry-Currant Sauce

I present two options. You may choose your favorite, or come up with a different one.

1. The cow is super pleased to be a part of dinner! It is juggling the side dishes to show its pride and satisfaction at finally realizing its life purpose. "Hooray!" the cow exclaims. "I will be the freshest most succulent delicious part of this meal. I have been eating extra food and taking many naps so that my flesh might be highly marbled and tender, that I may please the humans who shall partake of me."

2. "Look! Look! I can juggle! I can juggle, see? See? You can't eat a juggling cow, can you? Can you? I'm ever so entertaining!" "No. We will eat you because you are delicious." "But I stepped in my own poop today! And I've just hooved all the side dishes! Now they are fouled with poop. So you can't eat me after all I guess! Ha ha!" "Hm. That is true. We cannot eat poop rolls. We will just have to make do with what's left." "Yes! Yes! WAIT." *snick blurble*

Oh, you silly jolly cow!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

WWI Rationing: Curried Rice with Corn and Cheese in Brown Sauce, Rye Rolls, and Wheatless, Eggless, Butterless, Milkless, Sugarless Cake

They said it'd be over by Christmas of 1914, and now, four years later, we can finally start looking forward with a peaceful Christmas. One of the Jensen boys was so pleased on Armistice day, he drove the car right through the town's celebratory bonfire! He was set to ship out on November 12.

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However, rationing is still in force. If we all pitch in and conserve meat, milk, butter, fat, eggs, and sugar, we can send more relief overseas.

With that in mind, let's look back through Foods That Will Win the War and How to Cook Them [1918].

To provide adequate supplies for the coming year is of absolutely vital importance to the conduct of the war, and without a very conscientious elimination of waste and very strict economy in our food consumption, we cannot hope to fulfill this primary duty.

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One pot meals need only fruit or simple dessert, and bread and butter to complete a well-balanced menu.

½ cup rice
1 cup cheese
1 cup corn
1½ cup milk
¼ cup fat
¼ cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
⅛ teaspoon cayenne
Melt fat until brown. Add flour and seasonings. Heat until brown. Add milk gradually. When at boiling point add other ingredients. Place in baking dish and bake 45 minutes.

But I hear you thinking, wait! This rice and corn in sauce needs something. Hey, I know! Sauce!

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It is claimed that the most serious food shortage in Germany is fat; that the civilian population is dying in large numbers because of the lack of it, and that Von Hindenburg's men will lose out on the basis of fat, rather than on the basis of munitions or military organization. Worst of all is the effect of fat shortage on the children of the nation. Leaders of thought all over Europe assert that even if Germany wins, Germany has lost, because it has sapped the strength of its coming generation.

[Liebe Deutschen,

Ich habe Deutschland sehr gern.

Mit besten Grüßen,

¼ cup fat
⅓ cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
⅛ teaspoon of cayenne
1½ cups brown stock, or
1½ cups water and 2 bouillon cubes
½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
Melt fat until brown. Add flour. Heat until brown. Add liquid gradually, letting come to boiling point each time before adding more liquid. When all is added, 1 teaspoon kitchen bouquet may be added if darker color is desired.

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Waste in your kitchen means starvation in some other kitchen across the sea. Our Allies are asking for 450,000,000 bushels of wheat, and we are told that even then theirs will be a privation loaf. Crop shortage and unusual demand has left Canada and the United States, which are the largest sources of wheat, with but 300,000,000 bushels available for export. The deficit must be met by reducing consumption on this side the Atlantic. This can be done by eliminating waste and by making use of cereals and flours other than wheat in bread-making.

4 cups rye flour
1½ teaspoons salt
6 teaspoons baking powder
1½ cups milk
2 tablespoons fat
1 cup chopped nuts
Mix dry ingredients thoroughly. Add milk, nuts and melted shortening. Knead. Shape into rolls. Put into greased pans. Let stand one-half hour. Bake in moderate oven 30 minutes.

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One ounce of sugar less per person, per day, is all our Government asks of us to meet the world sugar shortage. One ounce of sugar equals two scant level tablespoonfuls and represents a saving that every man, woman and child should be able to make. Giving up soft drinks and the frosting on our cakes, the use of sugarless desserts and confections, careful measuring and thorough stirring of that which we place in our cups of tea and coffee, and the use of syrup, molasses or honey on our pancakes and fritters will more than effect this saving.

1 cup corn syrup
2 cups water
2 cups raisins
2 tablespoons fat
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1½ cups fine cornmeal, 2 cups rye flour; or, 3½ cups whole wheat flour
1½ teaspoons baking powder, or, ½ teaspoon soda

Cook corn syrup, water, raisins, fat, salt and spices slowly 15 minutes. When cool, add flour, soda or baking powder, thoroughly blended. Bake in slow oven 1 hour. The longer this cake is kept, the better the texture and flavor. This recipe is sufficient to fill one medium-sized bread pan.


Curried Rice with Corn and Cheese... : First off, the name is a misnomer. I want you to scroll back and see if you can find the curry. I'll wait. ..... Did you find it? No, you didn't. The seasoning in this dish is salt and the tiniest, teeniest breath of cayenne pepper. That said, it's... good! I am a big fan of cheese sauce with things in it. The bottom got all crispy and delicious. It does not need the brown sauce. At all. If you're of the meat-free persuasion, you should give this a try. It is easy and super de duper cheap. You might want to omit the salt, cut down on the fat, and see about adding some herbs, though.

... in Brown Sauce: It's beef gravy! Really, really thick beef gravy with WAYYY more fat than needed. I used olive oil, as I didn't feel up to putting that much lard in... anything. I still have no idea why they would feel that rice and corn in cheese sauce required more sauce.

Rye Rolls: I used light rye flour. Light rye flour : dark rye flour :: white flour : whole wheat flour. These were very grim. Raw flour got stuck in the crevices of the pecans. They tasted of nothing. Absolutely nothing. Husband, however, found out that if one eats a bite with a bite of CRwCaC in BS, the dry tastelessness soaks up the excess sauce. I found that they go down well alongside their own volume in apricot jam. Husband's method is undoubtedly the most historically accurate.

Wheatless, Eggless, Butterless, Milkless, Sugarless Cake: The thing that immediately struck me about this cake was its sheer weight. It is a solid 2.5 lbs. It is like a raisined brick. In today's standards, I would in no way classify this as a cake. It is too solid, dry, and not sweet enough. As a bread, it is passable. In 1918 though, I know it'd be a big treat and I'd be happy to have it. Moreover, as solid as this sucker is, it's going to last for a looooooong time.

It is best toasted, then slathered with black-market butter and sprinkled with black market cinnamon sugar, with a side of guilt for our starving Allies.

Alternatively, we discovered the next day that it is fantastic made into bread pudding and drowning in warm custard.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Grapefruit Imperial

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Do you remember Sugar Girl and her Anthropomorphic Zoo Animals, and I said I had lost the cookbook? Good news! I found it. Hooray! This is a cookbook produced by the Imperial Sugar company, and features many recipes for children that each involve large amounts of sugar. Awesome!

Grapefruit Imperial

You will need:
2 grapefruit
Imperial Brown Sugar
Maraschino cherries
Knife, citrus knife, measuring spoons, aluminum foil, pot holder

Work plan:
Place sheet of aluminum foil over grill of broiler pan. Turn on broiler, asking for help from mother if necessary. [It was not necessary.] Slice grapefruit in half. Cut around each section and remove the center. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon Imperial Brown Sugar over top of each grapefruit half. Arrange grapefruit halves on broiler pan and place under broiler. Cook until sugar melts and edge of grapefruit turns delicate brown [about 10 minutes]. Remove from broiler. Put 1 cherry in center of each half.

Should be served at once. Serves four. Grapefruit Imperial is delicious at breakfast but is also good at other meals.

Sprinkle grapefruit halves with grated orange rind when grapefruit are almost ready. Return to broiler and finish cooking.

Use foil covered muffin tin, rather than broiler pan.

Verdict: It does look festive, doesn't it? This would be lovely for a fancy breakfast. Some of the sugar pooled up and caramelized like on the top of creme brulee. I still prefer icy cold grapefruit with a sprinkle of sugar, but this was an interesting change. And it's got a cherry on top!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Betty Crocker's Chicken Hat

Another gem from Betty Crocker's New Dinner for Two Cookbook [1972].

This is a narcissistic chicken sporting a jaunty bread-and-pear chapeau.

What more can be said?

Chicken Salad
For variety, use 1/4 cup chopped salted almonds in place of bacon.

1 cup cut-up cooked chicken (large chunks)
1/2 cup cut-up celery (1/4" pieces)
1 1/2 tsp. lemon juice
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 or 2 hard-cooked eggs, cut up
1/4 cup finely broken crisp bacon

Toss chicken, celery, lemon juice, salt, and pepper together. Mix in mayonnaise. Carefully fold in eggs. Chill thoroughly. If desired, serve in tomato cups or on drained pineapple or avocado slices on salad greens. Sprinkle with the crisp bacon. 2 servings.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Orange-Cherry Cobbler

There are occasions upon which one needs a dessert. For such occasions, Jiffy Cooking [1967] is here for you!

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Look at that picture, read the recipe, and tell me it is not glorious.

Orange-Cherry Cobbler
1 1-pound 5-ounce can cherry pie filling
1/4 cup water
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 package refrigerated orange Danish rolls with icing (8 rolls)

In saucepan, combine pie filling, water, and lemon juice; heat to boiling. Pour into an 8 1/4 x 1 3/4 inch round ovenware cake dish. Top hot cherries with rolls, flat side down. Bake in hot oven (400 degrees) 15 to 20 minutes or until rolls are done. Spread tops with the icing that comes in the orange-roll package. Serve warm. Makes 6 to 8 servings.

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Verdict: Pie filling and pastry. Theirs was a star-crossed love that could not be. Sigh.

When I pulled it out of the oven, the rolls looked perfect, and so I frosted them. But beneath the crispy delicious exterior lurked a cold doughy mess only apparent after I took a bite. I put them back in. They cooked for a solid 10 extra minutes. The top was almost burned, the bottom... still cold and doughy. Siiiiighhhhhhh. We dissected the rolls, separating delicious pastry and cold doughy horror, and ate it anyway.

What could have been.