Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Bah, Humbug

The world is too much with me right now, so if no one minds I'm suspending blogging until the New Year.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

What's In A Name?

A “salad” recipe from my 1936 Detroit Times cookbook (as I have pointed out before—and been resoundingly contradicted but I stand by my statement—in the American South and Midwest, gelatin was and is technically a vegetable). It’s part of a Sunday dinner that includes squash soup, cheese rolls, corn custard, and roast beef with browned potatoes. The sort of light after-church repast that leaves everyone snoozing until suppertime. Note the seeded grapes. Does anyone, even Martha Stewart, bother to seed grapes anymore?

Ginger Ale Salad

¾ cup diced canned pineapple
¾ cup chopped grape-fruit pulp
1/3 cup blanched shredded almonds
¼ cup seeded Malaga grapes
1 cup ginger ale
2 tablespoons granulated gelatin
1/3 cup cold water
Few grains salt
Few grains paprika

“Soak the gelatin in the cold water for five minutes, then dissolve it over hot water. Add one-fourth cup of the ginger ale. Combine the diced pineapple, grape-fruit pulp, Malaga grapes, shredded almods, salt and pepper and then add the remaining three-fourths cup of ginger ale. Add the gelatin mixture, stir thoroughly and pour into individual molds which have been dipped in and out of cold water. Chill thoroughly, unmold and serve on lettuce leaves, garnished with mayonnaise. Serves six.”

Of course, if you combine the fruits with the gelatin before that mixture has congealed to the texture of egg whites, it’s all going to sink to the bottom of the mold. Oh well, perhaps that was the intended effect.

Saturday, December 25, 2010


Friday, December 24, 2010

Quote of the Day

He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end. (Luke 1:32-33).

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Look Ma, No Hands

So after beating the knuckles on my right hand all sore last weekend, what did I do tonight? As I was putting some wood into the stove I managed to slip and place my left hand, thumb downwards, onto a live coal. And because of the way I fell, they stayed in contact for several seconds (while I yipped like a coyote).

For someone who makes a living pounding a keyboard, I’m awful careless with my equipment.

The Online Bookshelf - Rick and Ruddy

A nostalgic read for the Christmas weekend. Definitely for the youngsters, from Project Gutenberg.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Patterns of the Past - McCall's Cutwork

McCall's 4940 and yes, I own this one (not that I'll ever use it; the thought of all that satin stitch makes my fingers hurt).

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Virtue Never Goes Unpunished

I nominated one of my team for Big Flat County Health Department Employee of the Year, and wrote an absolutely magnificent (if I do say so myself) citation for her.

I just found out that I was nominated for Employee of the Year, too. I lost. To my team member.

There’s a lesson here somewhere, if I can just figure out what it is.

Knitting - 2 Needle Mittens from Purple Kitty

And you may even have time to make a pair or two before Christmas.

Monday, December 20, 2010

Oh, The Weather Outside Is Frightful

Appearance of tomorrow's post is going to hinge on how much more sleet we get, I'm afraid. I can't believe we haven't lost power yet.

More Christmas Clipart

From Dover Publications.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Beans, Beans, The Wonderful Fruit

Another promotional cookbook from a manufacturer of new and improved pots and pans. By using Guardian products and methods, the homemaker was guaranteed to save time, effort and money while still producing delicious meals. The illustrations place it in the late 1940’s, which would be about the time American industry had re-tooled from defense products and was going after the domestic market again. Guardian pots and pans could be used either in or on top of the stove.

This recipe for baked beans is intended for the stovetop. I’ve seen the trick of placing the whole onion in the center of the beans, in other recipes. They don’t say so here, but I assume that the onion would be peeled, first.

The utensil used would be the Casserole Tureen, a sort of double boiler with an inner and outer unit.

Baked Beans

Time: 4-6 hours (serves 8 to 10)

1 qt Navy Beans
¾ lb. salt pork, sliced
2 tsp. salt
1 tsp dry mustard
1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup molasses
1 whole onion

Wash and pick over beans, cover with cold water, soak over night. Pour into unit, add more water to cover, if necessary. Cover unit, simmer over low heat about 30 minutes or until skins crack when beans are lifted from water.

Scald pork, scrape it well, cut thru rind in several places. Cover bottom of Inner Unit with pork slices, then alternate layers of beans and pork.

Add seasonings, molasses and brown sugar to cooking water (about 3 cups) and add to beans. Put whole onion in center, if desired.

Combine unites, bake 10 minutes over high heat, then reduce heat to low. If beans are more moist than desired remove cover during last 20 minutes of baking period. Add 1 cup tomato ketchup, if you like a tomato flavor. Then use ¾ cup less bean liquid.

Maybe I Should Stop Watching Laramie Just Before Bedtime

The knuckles on my right hand are bruised and swollen this morning. The question is, what/who was I punching?

Saturday, December 18, 2010


Thursday, December 16, 2010

There’s A Lot To Be Said For Monogamy

I caught a ride to a training session today with two nurses from the STD clinic. I now know more than I ever really wanted to about syphilis.

The Online Bookshelf - Caldecott's Picture Book No. 2

By Randolph Caldecott and published by Frederick Warne & Co. May be downloaded from Project Gutenberg.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

My Mamma Didn't Raise No Dummies

Me: You're looking at the new Secretary of the Big Flat County Disaster Council.

He: Congratulations--I guess. Why are you the new Secretary?

Me: Because I did not want to be Vice President.

Knitting - A Cozy 1948 BedJacket

A raglan bedjacket from Modern Knitting, 1948, with the yoke knitted in what appears to be a variation of blackberry stitch. Full instructions can be downloaded from my Flickr account.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Sunday, December 12, 2010

It's Always Been A Favorite

Quite possibly the most swashbuckling version I've ever heard.

I Guess Hell Has Frozen Over, Too

There can be no other explanation.

Further Signs that the Apocalypse is Upon Us

An aviator is the new Marine Corps Commandant, breaking a tradition of infantrymen as CMC dating back to…forever.

(It looks like the new Assistant Commandant is a guy I knew in Okinawa when he was the senior III MEF aide, twenty-odd years ago. I don’t think he was the one who rode a motorcycle through the officer’s club at Camp Courtney, but he was pretty goofy).

The Cranberrinator

A small promotional cookbook for Eatmor Cranberries, available from Project Gutenberg. Who knew that cranberries had biceps?

Friday, December 10, 2010

Quote of the Day

High on the list of things you will never hear a Southerner say; "I believe you cooked those green beans too long." ~ John McIntyre

Photo: BellaOnline.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

The Online Bookshelf - The Princess and the Goblin

By George MacDonald and with lovely illustrations by Jessie Wilxcox Smith. From Project Gutenberg.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

They Know Me So Well

The boss & I went to a local Chinese place for lunch today, and I brought the little message from my fortune cookie back to show the Things.

"You need to show more tenderness and less aggressiveness."

They both cracked up.

Patterns of the Past - For the Over 40 Crowd

From Smart Knitting, 1953. I wonder if the over 40 label means size or age?

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

It's War To The Knife

Our public affairs officer has been playing, in the office next to mine, a selection of Christmas music that includes this.

Tomorrow I am bringing in the CD someone gave me last year with the bagpipe version of “Angels From The Realms of Glory”.

Crochet - Some Christmas Gifts from 1948

From Modern Knitting, 1948. Right-click to enlarge, or go to my Flickr account to download.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Vintage Images - More Angels

Copyright-free, from Dover.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

"What Kind of a Party Shall I Give?"

An advertising pamphlet for Keith’s Bread, issued in 1939 by the Quality Bakers of America. The recipes, as might be expected, lean heavily toward sandwiches. Here are some suggestions for a bridge party that will include the menfolk, thereby mandating the presence of something more substantial than cucumber and chicken salad.

Three-Decker Sandwich

18 slices buttered toast
2/3 cup mayonnaise
12 slices cooked chicken
12 strips crisp bacon
4 medium tomatoes
Salt and pepper

Place a piece of lettuce on a slice of buttered toast. Spread lightly with mayonnaise and arrange slices of chicken on it. Cover with another piece of toast. Place lettuce, mayonnaise, bacon, and thin slices of tomato on this. Season with salt and pepper. Cover with third piece of toast. Trim crusts and cut in triangles or finger strips. May be garnished with radishes, pimiento, green pepper, or olives. Makes six club sandwiches.

Cheese Marmalade

1 loaf bread
½ cup orange marmalade
1/3 cup grated American cheese

Spread thin slices of bread lightly with butter. Soften cheese and blend with just enough mayonnaise to moisten. Work smooth. Spread 1 slice of bre3ad with cheese and another with orange marmalade. Put slices together and chill. Cut into tiny finger sandwiches if desired. Makes approximately ten whole sandwiches.

Moscow Canapes

Slice off the bottom of a round rye loaf and slice the loaf into large circles. On each round slice, place a circle of caviar in the center, then a circle of chopped egg moistened with mayonnaise, then strips of smoked salmon. Cut in sections like a pie and serve.

Boston Bean Sandwiches

Mix ½ cup grated cheese, 1 can Boston baked beans, 1 c up white sauce. Heat in a pan until the cheese melts. Serve on portions of toast as open sandwiches.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Just Because


And in breaking news, it started snowing before I left work last night and it is still snowing. It's looking very seasonal out but I'm glad I have no plans to go anywhere.

Friday, December 3, 2010

At Least They Aren’t Anatomically Correct

My counterpart in another county, due to storage limitations, has stacked in her office two boxes clearly marked “Inflatable Life-Sized Rubber Dolls.” She says she can’t wait for the mass casualty exercise so she can get rid of the damn things and the ribald comments from co-workers will stop.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

The Revenge of the Queen

Her Majesty and Funnyface have been sparring, and she is completely covered, soaked, in dog spit. I have been laughing at her.

She just jumped up in my lap.

She Cringes When She Sees Us Coming

Thing 1 and I have invaded the finance administrator's office to find out if we can spend county money on a Santa Claus costume.

She (covering her face with her hands): Why don't you two ever ask for anything normal?

The Online Bookshelf - More Celtic Fairy Tales

By Joseph Jacobs, and with some very Beardsley-like black and white illustrations by John D. Batten. From Project Gutenberg.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Patterns of the Past - It's Deja Vu All Over Again

Have I posted this before? Because that dressing gown looks familiar. From Workbasket magazine, November 1950.