Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Cooking From Another Era

 My dad went back to Montana over the weekend to visit some relatives and came home with a few goodies for me from my grandmother's house: Some funky red glass dishes (which I will show in another post as they are in the dishwasher right now) and 2 cookbooks from the 1930's.  They might have even been my great-grandmother's who then gave them to Grace. 

They have a very art deco feel about them.  I especially love this bas-relief on the Household Searchlight Recipe Book.  The other one is called the New Delineator Recipes.  What that even means, I have no idea.  This was definitely a time before celebrity cookbooks or even photos of food. 

The Searchlight cookbook has fabulous tabs that make it easy to find sections.  

Lots of aspic in the 30's.   Jellied Lamb Salad sounds pretty disgusting to me. 

Also funny is that both cookbooks have recipes for Welsh Rarebit which is just a fancy way of saying white sauce and cheese on toast.   I have a few contemporary cookbooks that try to make this sound very gourmet but it has very humble beginnings.  

The Delineator calls it Rabbit instead of Rarebit, but it is the same thing.   Very few of these recipes have cooking times or even oven temperatures.   They assume you know the basics of cooking and don't need to hold your hand about everything. 

Some of these drinks look tasty.  I may try and make the Ginger Ale Julep or the Orange Bounty. (Basically an Orange Julius.)
The books smell pretty musty and need to air out some more before I really start to go through them.  They make me sneeze if I touch them too much.


  1. What a treasure! I love to look at old recipes.

  2. Maybe you can start by preparing the recipes that have penciled notes in the margins ... the dishes Grandmother made. I wonder if the recipe for her cucumber vinegar salad is in there...? Have fun....

  3. The pencil writing is very very faint and hard to read but I have been trying to decipher them!