Friday, May 11, 2012

G.G. Goes back in time: 1946 Cook Book Classic Recipes and Hints

Recently, I stumbled across a cook book edited put out by the Women's Radio Club in 1946. My nan was the President of the club and editor of the book. Women from around the region sent in their recipes, which were then compiled and the book was sold, with the proceeds going to charity. All the details are over here, but I wanted to share some more recipes and handy hints from the book, as they are just so delightful! Of course, my favourite article was Gardening Makes Good Health but there are some other stellar contributions that I just couldn't go past posting. You're Welcome! Taking into account this was published the year after World War II ended, there are lots of little aside notes that make sense within that context. as there was still as shortage in supplies of some items.

Useful Hints
  • When you cook turnips, you often notice that they take a long time to cook and are hard. By adding 1 teaspoon of sugar instead of salt, they not only cook in half the time, but it improves the flavour.
  • Add a pinch of of baking soda to the milk when bought, and it will keep fresh during the summer without scalding.
  • For burns and scalds, apply condensed milk or treacle to the affected parts. This method does not stain the skin (G.G. NB: DON'T actually do this!! Only run the burn under cold water.)
Cold Drinks
  • Cherry Cup: One pound of sugar, a cup of water, a pint of cherry juice, 3 lemons, orange slices, pineapple diced. Boil sugar, water and thinly cut lemon rinds for 5 minutes. Cool and strain, add a pint of cherry juice, lemon juice and 2 quarts of cooled water. Garnish with orange slices, pineapple, stoned cherries and cracked ice if procurable.  
  • Orange cocktail: Dry gin, Italian vermouth, French vermouth, juice of 1 orange. Half fill cocktail shaker with crushed ice. Add orange juice, one third Italian and French vermouth, and a dash of dry gin. Shake well and serve very cold.
  • Mint Lemonade: Boil 1 cup of sugar and 6 cups of water for 20 minutes, then add 1 cup of mint leaves. The leaves should be bruised with the handle of a knife.  Let the mixture stand until cool. When cold, add the juice of 3 lemons. Serve as cold as possible and put one or two sprigs of mint in the jug.
  • Claret Cup: 1 bottle of soda water, 1 bottle lemonade, 1 bottle of ginger ale, 1/2 bottle of claret, 1 lemon (sliced). Add lemon slices to claret, set aside to chill. When required for use, quarter fill a glass jug with crushed ice. Pour into it the claret and lemon slices and add the soda water, lemonade and ginger ale. Serve at once.

  • Caper Sauce (to serve with boiled mutton): One teaspoon of capers, 1 oz. of butter, 1 oz of butter, 3/4 pint of the liquor in which the mutton is boiled, 1 dessertspoon of vinegar, a punch of salt. Melt the butter and flour together and mix very smoothly with a little of the liquor, add the rest of the liquor and let it all boil together for 5 to 10 minutes; add the capers and vinegar, which may be taken from the capers and serve very hot. One teaspoon of finely minced parsley may be substituted for the capers.
  • Foam Sauce: One small cup of sugar, 2 eggs, 1 tablespoon of brandy and sherry, a small piece of butter about the size of a nut. Beat the sugar and roll yolks of eggs together; stand the basin with mixture in a saucepan of boiling water, add the butter and stir till quite hot; add the stiffly beaten whites, and just before serving, stir in the brandy. Wine may be used instead of brandy.
  • Cheese and gherkin scones: Two cups of self raising flour, 1 tablespoon of butter, 2 tablespoons of grated cheese, 3 tablespoons of chopped gherkin, 1/2 teaspoon of salt, punch cayenne pepper, 1 teaspoon of dry mustard, about 3/4 cup of milk. Sift flour, salt and pepper and mustard. Add grated cheese and chopped gherkin. Add enough milk to make fairly soft dough. Turn on floured board, and press of roll out into 1/2 inch thickness, cut with round cutter or floured knife, into shapes. Place on greased tray and bake for 8 to 10 minutes in a hot oven.
  • Oyster croquettes: One tin of oysters, 1 tablespoon of flour, 1 cup of breadcrumbs, 1/2 oz. of butter, a grate of lemon peel, 1 teaspoon of lemon juice, a pinch of nutmeg, salt, cayenne, a teaspoon of anchovy sauce may also be used, 1/2 cup of milk. Drain liquor from a tin of oysters, and make into a sauce with the flour, butter and milk; add the oysters, lightly chopped, breadcrumbs and seasoning; turn on to a plate, and let the mixture get quite cold; then form into neat pieces, dip into batter and fry in very hot fat. If wanted for breakfast, make the mixture the night before. If carefully seasoned and properly fried, this is a very nice dish.

  • Ginger and Date Cake: Beat 1/2 lb butter and 3/4 cup sugar to a cream. Add 3 eggs, one at a time, then 1lb preserved ginger, cut small, 1/2 lb dates, 2 ozs. walnuts, 2 ozs. lemon peel, 1 large teaspoon grated nutmeg, 2 cups of plain flour, 1/2 cup of warm milk and water, 1/2 teaspoon carbonate soda dissolved in 1 large teaspoon vinegar, add about 1 wineglass of sherry. Bake 2 1/4 hours.
 There are in fact, hundreds more recipes, some of which I may post another day. What a delight it is to be able to step back in time and imagine myself in a post war world. Oyster croquettes for Brekky anyone?

Tell me readers: do you have any old recipe books laying around? Do you use them or are they just for the occasional flick through?

3 fabulous comments:

muppy said...

Great post! i looove the old cookbooks, i have a couple of my grandmothers.

TravelJunkie said...

This cookbook is very interesting and very original.! i also love old cookbooks, we have one of our grandmother dating back to 1868, the recipes and the hints are amazing!

Rita (mademoiselle délicieuse) said...

Old Chinese women tell you to pour soy sauce over scalds or burns rather than cold water from a tap - apparently the more ambient temperature helps to prevent blisters from forming?

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