Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Vintage Cookbooks

Growing up, I knew Mom was a great cook. She could make magic with just a few ingredients and stretch a grocery dollar to it's limit. In truth, she started out cooking like most country cooks and made meals without a written recipe by following her Mother's methods. Years later Daddy gave her this cookbook and it was her favorite. Even if Mom hadn't told me how much she loved this cookbook, I could tell from the worn cover and stained pages. I also have memories of sitting at the kitchen table and watching her prepare a meal from its pages.

The inside cover invites you to prepare some beautiful dishes.

I always admired the choice of colors in this cookbook. Not only does it have some wonderful pictures of the prepared dishes, there are pictures of everyday American life. This cookbook was first published in 1956.

In addition to the recipes, the pages are filled with 'methods' that show you step by step instructions for making pie crusts, pastries, dumplings, etc.

The back cover is missing along with a few pages of the index, but the recipes are all there. Of course some of the pages are scribbled with an ink pen when Mom wasn't quick enough to grab it out of my hands. Just holding the cookbook makes me feel closer to her and brings back a flood of memories. Once in a while a book, especially a cookbook, becomes so much more than its contents. It's a bridge to the past filled with love along the way.
Here's one of the vintage recipes from this cookbook.
Summer Squash with Dill
Set out a 3-qt heavy saucepan having a tight-fitting cover.
Wash, trip off ends and cut into thin cross-wise slices
2 lbs. summer squash
Choose young, tender squash; it is not usually necessary to pare them. Pare only if the outside seems tough.
Put squash into the saucepan with
1/2 cup boiling water
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh dill or 1/4 teaspoon dill seeds
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon Accent
Cover saucepan and cook squash 15 to 20 min., or until just tender. Drain if necessary.
Mix together in top of double boiler
1 cup thick sour cream
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 teaspoons sugar
1/4 teaspoon paprika
Cook over simmering water, stirring constantly, 3 to 5 min., or until sauce is thoroughly heated. Carefully mix sauce with the squash and serve immediately.


Betsy from Tennessee said...

Hi Marge, My Mom was a great cook also. Love that squash recipe. I may try that one..

Hope you are doing okay and had a nice weekend.

Lickedspoon said...

This is a lovely story and the recipe looks great. I found your blog on the Foodie Blog Roll and I'm so glad I did.

from my motorhome to yours said...

just found your blog, I love going to the good will and finding old cookbooks, I found an old letter inside one , still have it to this day