plums-dried to make prunes

Recipes for Prunes (Dried Plums)

Prunes are often joked about being used only for relief of constipation. In 2001, plum growers in the U.S. were authorized by the government to call prunes “dried plums.” So now we see packages labeled “dried plums” rather than prunes.  [reference] ============================ FROM OLD COOKBOOKS: DRIED FRUITS Dried fruits such as raisins, dates, figs, and prunes are valuable sweets for boys and girls. It is much better to eat one of these fruits than candy. […]

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mince meat advertisement

Is There Any Meat in Mincemeat?

My mother only made mincemeat pies at Thanksgiving. She used mincemeat from a jar but there wasn’t any meat in it.  Originally, mincemeat WAS made with meat and included spices, dried fruit and spirits (alcohol). That way, mincemeat could be preserved for many years. I’ve never seen mincemeat in stores with any meat in it, but it’s probably sold somewhere.  =================================== RECIPES FROM 1800s COOKBOOKS MINCE MEAT PIES These pies are always made with covers and should be […]

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bunch of bananas

Vintage Banana Recipes

BANANAS  weren’t known in the United States until Captain Lorenzo Baker introduced them in 1870.  They were expensive and only available to those living near port cities on the east coast. It took many years for them to become available and affordable to the average household.   FROM EARLY 1900s COOKBOOKS: Do not try to hurry the ripening process as bananas are better when ripened slowly. Keep them in the dark, in a not too cold […]

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bonbon candy

Making Bonbon Candy

When I was a kid, bonbons, made by the Brach’s Candy Company were quite popular. I don’t see bonbons anymore in stores, although I did find a five pound bag from WinCrest Bulk Foods on Amazon. The recipe to make bonbons below is from “CANDY MAKING AT HOME” by Mary M. Wright, 1915. THE FOUNDATION FOR NEARLY ALL BONBONS IS FONDANT Hundreds of varieties of bonbons can be made by using different flavorings and different combinations of one […]

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Ways to Use Rhubarb

  Rhubarb is usually considered a vegetable. But in 1947, a New York court in the United States ruled that since it was used in the U.S. as a fruit, it counted as a fruit for the purposes of regulations and duties. (Tariffs were higher for vegetables than fruits). NOTE:  Only use the stalks. Rhubarb leaves are poisonous. RHUBARB RECIPES FROM OLD COOKBOOKS STEWED RHUBARB When rhubarb first comes into season it is small, tender and of […]

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cooking fritters

All Kinds of Fritters

  My mother made corn fritters when I was a kid, which I loved. While reading old cookbooks, I found fritter recipes for other vegetables and also for sweet (fruit) fritters. RECIPES FROM OLD COOKBOOKS BATTER FOR SAVORY FRITTERS Put six ounces of flour into a basin, with a pinch of salt, the yolk of one egg, and a quarter of a pint of warm water. Work this round and round with a wooden spoon till […]

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homemade pudding

Old Fashioned Pudding Recipes

  These recipes are from The Virginia Housewife: Or Methodical Cook by Mrs. Mary Randolph, published in 1860. TRANSPARENT PUDDING Beat eight eggs very light, add half a pound of pounded sugar, the same of fresh butter melted, and half a nutmeg grated. Set it on a stove, and keep stirring till it is as thick as buttered eggs. Put a puff paste in a shallow dish, pour in the ingredients, and bake it half an […]

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gingerbread in pan

Gingerbread Cake Recipes

Recipes from old cookbooks published in the 1800s SOFT MOLASSES GINGERBREAD Melt a teacup of butter—mix it with a pint of molasses, a tablespoonful of ginger, a pint of flour, and a couple of beaten eggs. Fresh lemon peel, cut into small strips, improves it. Dissolve a couple of teaspoonsful of saleratus* in half a pint of milk, and stir it into the cake. Add flour to render it of the consistency of unbaked pound […]

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