As much as I love to cook – and eat – I was eager to share this find with you. The year is 1882 and the title is Domestic Economy. Have you ever watched The Great British Baking Show? Once in each episode the bakers are given a very watered-down recipe – no oven temperature or time to bake, just enough to make them ask, how in the world do you make this? Some of these recipes are the same. But to cooks of that era I’m sure they knew exactly how to get the intended result. The Soft Ginger Cake and the Cream Biscuits are calling my name – I will definitely try them!
Friday, March 10, 1882
To always insure light dumplings, mix and let stand two or three hours before rising; cut into thin strips, roll in flour and boil twenty minutes.
Velvet Cream – Whites of four eggs beaten to a stiff froth; two teaspoonful each of sugar, currant jelly and raspberry jam. Beat all together briskly. Serve with or without cream. With cake it is a delicious dish for dessert.
Soft Ginger Cake – One cup of molasses, one cup of sugar, one cup of sweet milk, half a cup of butter, one egg, two teaspoonful of baking powder, ginger and raisins to suit the taste. Stir in flour enough to make a soft batter, not as thick as ordinary cake. Bake slowly.
Parsley Sauce – Wash a bunch of parsley in cold water, then boil it for six or seven minutes in salt and water; drain it, cut the leaves from the stalks and chop them fine. Have ready some melted butter and stir in the parsley; allow two small tablespoons of leaves to one-half pint butter. Serve with fish and boiled fowls.
Cream Biscuits – Delicious little cream biscuits for afternoon tea are made by mixing self-rising flour with cream, which roll into a thin, smooth paste, prick, cut and bake immediately. They should be kept dry in a closed tin box. If the flour is not self-rising, salt it lightly and mix with a dessert spoonful of baking powder.
Ham Sandwiches – Chop the ham fine and season it with salt, pepper and mustard. If the lean meat alone is used a little melted butter may be added. Spread between thin slices of bread. Cheese sandwiches are very nice; the cheese may be grated or cut in thin slices. Mustard is added, or not, as pleased.
Snowdon Cake – This is a genuine Scotch recipe and is a great favorite with Scotch-American families. Beat to a cream half a pound of butter, three-quarters of a pound of granulated sugar, the whites of six eggs, half a teacup of cream, and one pound of Bermuda arrowroot. Add the beaten yolks of two of the eggs and a very little salt. Bake in a mold one hour or more.
Mashed Potatoes – Pare and boil the potatoes, and, after every trace of the water has evaporated, mash them with you pestle, still in the kettle over the fire; they are naught if not kept hot. Get out every suggestion of a lump and as you mash put in a generous quantity of fresh butter, and, if you have it, some cream, enough milk to make the potato rich and moist. Salt it to taste and serve fresh and hot dish piled up and smoothed over in a hot with a little black pepper sifted on top. Mashed potato which has stood on the stove for a while before serving is poor stuff. If you want the top brown hold over it a salamander or a very hot stove lid – don’t put the dish into the oven, that only makes the contents watery.