May 6, 2010

What I'm learning through my vintage travels

When reading old cookbooks and vintage sewing patterns, there is a certain assumption put forth by the writer, that you know how to cook and sew. In other words, women were "taught" to sew, and cook and there was no need to go into precise detail in the directions.

This week while making the snow pudding, it gave the ingredients for making the custard sauce, but no direction. Custard sauce is a traditional Creme Anglaise and something I know how to make because I used to be a pastry chef and I also make a lot of ice cream and this is the base for most, if not all ice cream. I don't believe most women today would know how to make a custard sauce without cooking directions. Do you?

While looking through some of my vintage cookbooks and pamphlets I came across this one which may be one of the oldest I own. I have searched the web more than one time and can not find any reference to this little gem. It is in perfect condition and I am guessing it is from the turn of the century. It was written for Dunham's Cocoanut by Mrs. Sarah Tyson Rorer . It is fascinating to read about this bright, ambitious women who the bio states is considered the "first" dietitian. She founded the Philadelphia Cooking School which ran from 1882-1903.

It mentions some of the products she endorsed, but Dunham's Cocoanut is not listed, neither is it listed in the books she wrote..
Here she tell you how to make custard
I love the idea of making the small meringues and floating them on top of the custard.

A few terms I have no idea about.
 Stale Rusk
 You need to go to the middle of the article to read about rusk. No I am not going to tell you what it is. The article is too interesting not to read.

 I assume this is shortening or something like it.

This pamphlet is dated 1947 it was published by the Consumer Service Department of General Foods.
They were highlighting Swans Down Cake Flour, Baker's Chocolate and Calumet baking powder.

This booklet is filled with useful baking knowledge.

This booklet even taught me a thing or two.
 Right Size is Important
You can say that again!
 Could you be making the mistake of choosing the wrong size pan for your delectable cakes?
How about using the New "Mix-Easy" method?
I have never been one to enjoy making things "easy". I believe the tried and true method is best. The Mix-Easy method is just shy of a cake mix which I see plenty of in the 1951 Woman's Day ads. No cake mixes for me.

All in all I am learning so much from my vintage travels. I am off to do some sewing for the rest of the day. Talk soon.

Here is today's Angel picture. She is sitting on the Dainty Desserts booklet as 
I am photoing the Learn to Bake booklet.
 As I finish up writing the post she is laying down with her butt against the keyboard and wagging her tail on the keyboard as I type.


  1. Paste is a term for pastry/pie crust. I don't think it is in general use these days but you see it quite a bit in older recipes.

  2. Of silly of me. Thank you so much for commenting. it makes perfect sense.

  3. Nope, don't know how to make a custard sauce here. I do like eating them though.

    I thought of you the other day when I found my missing box of gloves! I'm happily sorting through them, but my favorite button-up green ones are missing.

  4. Button up green gloves? Sounds divine. I hope they show up.

  5. "Paste" just doesn't seem as appetizing as "crust".


I appreciate each and every one of your comments. Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts with me.


Related Posts with Thumbnails