Sunday, October 25, 2009

Mother's Delicious Dishes

Mrs. Sarah Moore, Needlecraft, March 1921

"CERTAINLY the mothers of twenty-five or thirty years ago used to be good cooks, for what man or woman of today but remembers fondly some oldfashioned dish that was the especial treat on high days and holidays, and very few of them can honestly say that anything every tasted as good since. Of course this is partly accounted for by the glamour which kindly time throws over all pleasant recollections, and partly by the youthful appetite which forms the finest sauce for any dish.

But there is no doubt at all about it, my mother and your mother, in fact, almost everybody’s mother of that day was an excellent cook, and though in all probability the good lady never heard of domestic science she could give points to many a cooking-school graduate of the present era. And many a capable housewife of today now keeps among her most cherished possessions mother’s very best receipts, perhaps written in faded ink on the blank pages in the back of the old-time cookery-book. Some of these old rules, of course, are too expensive for modern use now that eggs and butter have risen to prices of which mother never dreamed, but not all belong to this category. Every family has a collection of rules for making these oldfashioned dainties and wholesome meat dishes, and it is with the thought that perhaps the modern housekeeper would like to add to her collection a few more appetizing dainties that have been carefully selected from the household treasures of old friends in New England, in the south and in the middle west, that this article has been written.

OLDFASHIONED GRIDDLE CAKES. These cakes often came on the table at supper time, and were appreciated by the young folks. Beat three eggs and add to half a pint of milk, then stir in flour enough to make a thin batter. One teaspoonful of baking-powder must be added to the flour before stirring it all in. Fry the cakes the size of a breakfast-plate, and pile one on top of another, making five layers each covered with a mixture of sugar and cinnamon, or shaved maple sugar after buttering of course. When served, cut them in pie-fashion right through.

CHOCOLATE CREAM-CAKE. Beat one egg light in mixing-blowl, add one cupful of sugar, one cupful of cream, sweet or sour. Sift together one cupful of flour, five tablespoonfuls of cocoa and one teaspoonful of soda. Add flour to thicken, flavor with vanilla, bake twenty minutes in gem or layer-cake pans. Ice with white frosting.

CHICKEN CHOWDER. Have a three-pound chicken cut up as for fricassee and cook in two quarts of hot water until tender, then remove the meat. Brown two onions in one half pound of pork cut in inch squares, when done discard the pork-scraps and add the rest to the chicken stock. Dice six potatoes and cook in this until soft; when these are done add one cupful of hot milk and thicken with one tablespoonful of flour. Simmer ten minutes, add to the chicken, season, and serve.

(by pork I wonder if Mrs. Moore meant salt pork. I think she must have).

APPLE SLUMP. Some of you may remember eating this oldfashioned dish in your childhood. Measure one quart of flour and into it sift three tablespoonfuls of baking-powder and shorten with one tablespoonful of butter rubbed into the flour. Mix with cold milk or water, the same as for biscuit. Put two quarts of pared, sliced or quartered apples with one pint of water into the dish in which the slump is to be cooked. Roll the crust about an inch thick, cut into quarters, and with it cover the apples in the dish; then cover the whole with a close-fitting cover, and boil or steam until done. Take out on a platter and grate nutmeg over the apple. Serve with a sweet sauce or sugar and cream.

MAPLE-SUGUR COOKIES. Mix together one cupful of sugar, one cup of crushed maple sugar, one cup of butter, two well beaten eggs, two tablespoonfuls of water, two teaspoonfuls of baking-powder, and flour enough to roll out. Do not make too stiff. Bake in a quick oven."

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