Friday, January 18, 2008

Brother can you spare a $10

So I am assuming that one of the reasons you are reading my blog has to do with the frugal slant. Pinch that dollar til the eagle screams uncle cheap. Rob the pantry to pay the gas man.
Looking to friends and family who lived though the Great Depression. Unfortunately memories grow dim with time allowing recipes and formulas to fade.
Next best or better depending on how good a cook your Grandmother is, search out Depression era cookbooks. Many can be had for a dime or a dollar in tag sales or thrift stores.
The pamphlet on the right is Aunt Sammy's Radio Recipes Revisited, 1931, R. Van Deman & Fanny Walker Yeatman. This was printed by the USDA Bureau of Home Economics perhaps part of Roosevelt's new deal program. Barn sale for a buck along with 3 canning jars.
Foreword * Aunt Sammy's radio recipes brings together 400 of the most popular recipes and 90 of the menus included in housekeeper's chats (1926) ...
The menu section is my favorite part. Listed are selections for breakfast, lunch or supper, and dinner menus for all 12 months including holidays. Mindful portions were smaller then.
Breakfast ; canned peaches, crisp bacon, spoon bread, beverage.
Lunch; Corn chowder, dried beef toasted sandwiches, apple float.
Dinner; Broiled Liver, baked potatoes, buttered asparagus, canned fruit, cinnamon toast.
Yes, I know the cost of asparagus ! But remember the menu was based on what a good housewife canned that year. Something to think about. Growing asparagus out by the clothes line, could sell extra to neighbors.
The second smaller advertising pamphlet 1934 was from a local dairy company based in Buffalo, New York (think Rich's coffee creamer) with such unique recipes as cottage cheese soup, English monkey, and tuna fish pie.
One thing that you will notice when reading Depression cookbooks is that the American diet was far more varied with such items as squirrel and hedgehog, along with organ meats; sweetbreads, heart, and tongue back in the day. If these meats aren't a consideration (I won't eat mountain oysters) try scaling down on the amount of meat per person or go vegan. We do a meatless chili, spaghetti, and lasagna on our menu. Oh the other aspect is that as spices go Tabasco sauce & Cayenne were it when your poor.
English Monkey
Soak for 15 minutes
1 cup bread crumbs in 1 cup milk.
Melt 1 tbsp. butter in double boiler.
Add 1/2 cup cheese cut in pieces, when melted add soaked crumbs.
1 egg slightly beaten.
1/2 tsp. salt.
Cayenne to taste.
serve on crisp buttered crackers.
Serve with a glass of warm milk.
~~ pelenaka ~~

Searching ...

This is a pint & a half of stewed tomatoes that I grew last Summer on our homestead.
Opalka to be exact. From Poland, matures mid season (allows time to can up strawberries, spinach, and finish processing rabbits) , good size some up to 8-10 oz. and has a high yield. Very important when your farm is based on square foot/intensive method. The deciding factor will be canned taste.
The reference book is, 100 Heirloom Tomatoes for the American Garden, by Carolyn J. Male.
The pictures alone are better than Prozac on a dreary winter's day.
My goal is to grow & can enough tomatoes for our menu of Chili, Puerto Rican Rice, and Spaghetti Sauce for one year. Ruff estimate is about 100 quarts for stewed style & 40 quarts of sauce.
The one plant that I grew produced over 5 lbs. which figures out to needing about 30 plants.
I feel a challenge gnawing at me. Will have to kick it up to 10 lbs. per plant. Better make it 15 lbs. per tom. Competitive gardening for type A personalities.
Summer menu tends to be fresh picked salads & grilled meats so those goals are for the rest of the year. Family of 4 -5.
Oh on the canning jar measuring out to a pint & a half ... the person who gave the handful that I have remembers these jars were bought with sauce in them. Marked Atlas Mason.
Wish I knew more love the size.

~~ pelenaka ~~