1917 Pictures of Good Housekeeping Test Kitchen

Source: Good Housekeeping (December, 1917)

Good Housekeeping magazine has had test kitchens where recipes are tested for at least a hundred years. Here are two 1917 photos of the Good Housekeeping test kitchen.

Caption: This is a view of Good Housekeeping Institute Kitchen where all recipes appearing in Good Housekeeping, both on these pages and elsewhere in the magazine, are actually tried out. Here also are all sorts of kitchen utensils and appliances are give a thorough test under conditions identical with those in the average house. (Good Housekeeping, December, 1917)

26 thoughts on “1917 Pictures of Good Housekeeping Test Kitchen

      1. Thanks for finding this article. It is fascinating. I was really surprised by two things: 1) That there would be a journal paper that compared hand and mechanical dishwashing a hundred years ago. 2) That people were already researching whether bacteria remained on dishes after they were washed.

      1. I saw Gallivanta’s earlier comment about the dishwasher possibility, and it just this minute occurred to me that they used to use machines not to wash dishes, but to sterilize them. Perhaps that’s what this is.

        1. It’s amazing that people in 1917 were already worrying about the possibility that dishes might still have bacteria on them after they were washed. I hadn’t realized that they had the technology to study microbes like this back then.

          1. I’m not sure they did — but on the other hand, the benefits of hot water were well known. That’s why laundry day was such a chore. It involved heating water, carrying it to the wash tubs, and so on. I asked my mother once why they didn’t just wash in cold water, and she clearly was shocked. She said that even her grandmother knew that the water had to be hot! (Mom was born in 1918, so that’s putting the history of hot water in our family back a ways!)

    1. I hadn’t thought about it quite that way, but now that you mention it, the kitchen does look cold and sterile. It’s interesting how styles change over time.

  1. I would love to have that job. I think it’d be a job that would rarely get old. New recipes to try and new appliances to test… ah dare to dream… 😀

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