Sunday, January 25, 2009

Using It Up

Cookbooks are not normally devoted entirely to the topic of leftovers, but occasionally you run across a little booklet (usually put out by a cooking school) dedicated to this noble end. In a thriftier time, homemakers gave much thought to the question of what to do with the remains of yesterday's dinner. Heating something up another day was the easy way out, but very often there wasn't enough left to make much of a second meal. The Culinary Arts Institute of Chicago, Illinois published this vintage charmer in 1940, just after the hard times of the Depression and just before the hard times of WWII. It offered suggestions for using up kitchen remnants like stale bread, leftover meat and vegetables, and soured milk.

Ruth Berolzheimer was the director, and here are her recommendations for leftover cake, something we never seem to have in this house, at any rate.

“Keep leftover pieces of cake or cookies an a covered metal box. Crumble into pieces or grind into crumbs; combine with cooked leftover fruits (with juice) for steamed fruit puddings. Serve with lemon sauce.”

Leftover breadcrumbs also had many uses.

I think any of these would be quite tasty except maybe the brewis. It doesn’t sound very appetizing even if it will use up two cups of breadcrumbs (left click to enlarge the recipe page).

I mentioned liver loaf a couple of weeks ago when I was discussing rationing. A liver loaf by any other name is just a pâté, and made with calves’ or chicken livers I’ll bet it wouldn’t be half bad.

Liver Loaf with Pan Gravy

1 ½ lbs beef liver
1 ½ cups boiling water
2 slices salt pork, ¼ inch thick
1 medium onion
¼ cup chopped parsley
2 cups soft breadcrumbs
2 eggs, slightly beaten
1 t. salt
¼ t. pepper
2 T. flour
1 ½ cups cold water

“Rinse liver, cover with boiling water and let stand 10 minutes; drain. Grind with salt pork and onion; add parsley, crumbs, eggs, salt and pepper, and mix thoroughly. Press into baking pan (8x4x3 inches) and bake in moderate oven (350F) about 1 hour or until browned. Remove loaf to hot platter. Stir flour into drippings and brown; add water gradually and cook 5 minutes, until thickened; season and pour over loaf. If you like, omit gravy and garnish your liver loaf with crisp, brown bacon. Serves six.”


Anonymous said...

Actually liver loaf is very delicious..
I've used cake crumbs for topping on muffins.

Leti said...

One time somebody gave a recipe for "pate" made of chicken livers . It was different.
I would like to try this one.This one have different ingredients. It may be good.
Thank you for sharing !

Shay said...

Leti, I've made chicken liver pate two or three times; I love it but He doesn't and it's hard to eat an entire pate by oneself!

The next time our beef-raising neighbors butcher a calf, perhaps I should ask for the liver.

50sgal said...

mmmmm, I love liver! I just found your site and you bet I am trying this recipe! Although, living here in 1955 I have more groceries available than during the war, who can turn down liver? Nice blog.

Shay said...

50's gal, glad you stopped by. I think your blog is great, you have more guts than I do!