Old-fashioned Cheese Puffs

Cheese Puffs on Plate

When I think of Cheese Puffs, I think of a cheesy snack that’s in the snack aisle at the supermarket, so I was surprised to see a hundred-year-old recipe for cheese puffs. These Cheese Puffs are a delightful cheesy tidbit that can be eaten as a snack or a part of a meal.

The old recipe recommends serving the Cheese Puffs with a salad, which is what I did. Cheese Puffs and a salad are just right for a light lunch.

Here’s the original recipe:

Recipe for Cheese Puffs
Source: Mrs. Scott’s Seasonal Cook Books (The North American Newspaper, Philadelphia, Winter, 1921)

Here’s the recipe updated for modern cooks:

Cheese Puffs

  • Servings: approximately 12 Cheese Puffs
  • Difficulty: easy
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2 tablespoons butter

1/4 cup water

1/8 teaspoon salt

dash pepper

3/4 cup flour

1/4 cup grated cheese (I used cheddar cheese.) + additional grated cheese to garnish

1 egg

Preheat oven to 400° F. Put butter and water in a large sauce pan; bring to a boil. Stir in salt, pepper, and flour. Remove from heat, and add 1/4 cup grated cheese and egg; stir until thoroughly mixed.

Place on a greased baking sheet. Sprinkle with addiitonal grated cheese. Put in oven and bake 20 minutes or until lightly browned. If desired, serve with a salad.

http://www.ahundredyearsago.com

Old-fashioned Marguerites Recipe

This week I decided to make an old-fashioned snack called Marguerites. They are saltine crackers topped with jelly, meringue, sugar, and chopped nuts.

Another blogger in a post titled, Retro Recipe Challenge No. 9: The Candy Man wrote this about Marguerites:

Marguerites are something of a culinary Marie Celeste, if you ask me. You’ll find them in recipe books from the teens, the 20s, the 30s, even the early 40s–and then they’re gone. They vanish without a trace . . . But The Joy of Cooking doesn’t mention them.  Neither does Betty Crocker.  By 1960, the day of the Marguerite had passed.

I can see why they’ve vanished from modern recipe books. The Marguerites had a nondescript taste and aren’t nearly as sweet as many modern snacks; yet at the same time, I liked them and they were a surprisingly satisfying snack.

Marguerites are fun to make and made a nice presentation. The salt on the crackers was noticeable in the finished product, which was both salty and sweet.

Will I make Marguerites again? I’m not sure – yet a piece of me thinks that I might. They’re an easy snack to whip up, and eating just a couple really did take the edge off my late afternoon hunger.

Here’s the original recipe:

Recipe for Marguerites
Source: Mrs. Scott’s Seasonal Cook Books (The North American Newspaper, Philadelphia, Winter, 1921)

The 1 tablespoon of jelly called for in this recipe was not nearly enough since each cracker needed to be spread with the jelly, When I updated the recipe, I didn’t list an amount, I just indicated that currant (or other tart) jelly was needed to make this recipe.

Pulverized sugar is an old term for powdered sugar.

Here’s the recipe updated for modern cooks:

Marguerites

  • Servings: 12 crackers
  • Difficulty: moderate
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2 egg whites

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

12 soda crackers

currant jelly (or any tart jelly)

powdered sugar

chopped nuts (I used walnuts.)

Preheat oven to 325° F. Put egg whites in bowl and beat until stiff. Add granulated sugar, and beat a little more to get the sugar evenly distributed in the egg whites. Set aside.

Put crackers on a baking sheet. Spread currant (or other tart) jelly on each cracker.  Put approximately a tablespoonful of the beaten egg white on top of each jellied cracker; gently spread using a fork, and then sprinkle with powdered sugar and chopped nuts.

Place in oven and bake until the beaten egg whites are lightly browned (about 15 minutes).

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Daisy Salad

Daisy salad on plateHappy Easter

Extra hard-boiled eggs in the refrigerator? Here’s a fun way to use them.

Here’s the original recipe:

Daisy Salad on Plate
Source: Mrs. Scott’s Seasonal Cook Books (The North American Newspaper, Philadelphia, Winter, 1921)

Here’s the recipe updated for modern cooks:

Daisy Salad

  • Servings: 3-4
  • Difficulty: moderate
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4 hard-boiled eggs

2 cups shredded lettuce

French salad dressing

Grated onion, if desired

Cut the eggs in half length-wise and remove the yolks. Cut the whites into narrow strips; and, mash the yolks. (I mashed them with a fork. Another way to mash them would be to force them through a strainer.) Put a teaspoon of the yolk in the center of each plate, and arrange the strips of egg white around the mashed yolk to make it look like a daisy. (When I made this recipe, it took a little more than one egg for each daisy. I had left-over yolk.) Put shredded lettuce around the daisy. Serve with French salad dressing. If desired add a little grated onion to the French dressing before serving.

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Old-fashioned Asparagus Salad

Asparagus Salad on Plate

Spring has sprung – and I’m enjoying spring foods like asparagus. I found a hundred-old-recipe for Asparagus Salad, and decided to give it a try. Chilled asparagus stalks and red pepper rings are arranged on a bed of lettuce. The salad was tasty, and made a lovely presentation in an old-fashioned way.

Here’s the original recipe:

Recipe for Asparagus Salad
Source: The Boston Cooking-School Cook Book

In order to authentically replicate the original recipe, I suppose that I could have used canned asparagus, but somehow fresh asparagus just seemed like it would taste better, so that I what is used.

And, I skipped the French dressing that was enhanced with ketchup. It probably would be wonderful, but somehow it didn’t sound good to me.

Here’s the recipe updated for modern cooks:

Asparagus Salad

  • Servings: 1 serving
  • Difficulty: easy
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For each serving:

3 – 4 stalks asparagus

2 1/3-inch wide rings of red pepper

lettuce leaves

French salad dressing, if desired

Steam asparagus for 3-5 minutes or until tender. Remove from heat and chill.

To assemble salad, arrange lettuce leaves on plate. Place the chilled asparagus in the rings, and place on the lettuce leaves. If desired, serve with French salad dressing.

http://www.ahundredyearsago.com

Old-fashioned Spinach Soup

bowl of spinach soup

I have warm memories of Popeye the Sailor Man eating spinach to grow strong. Spinach is chockful of nutrients, and is an excellent source of potassium, magnesium, vitamin K, vitamin A, manganese, folate, copper, vitamin B2, vitamin B6, vitamin E, and vitamin C, as well as being one of the best sources of plant-based iron. What’s not to like?

As a result, I’m always on the lookout for good spinach recipes. So when I came across a hundred-year-old for Spinach Soup, I decided to give it a try.

The creamy Spinach Soup was delicious with a slight peppery undertone which added interest.

Here’s the original recipe:

Spinach Soup Recipe
Source: Lowney’s Cook Book (Revised Edition, 1921)

Here’s the recipe updated for modern cooks:

Spinach Soup

  • Servings: 4 - 5
  • Difficulty: moderate
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2 quarts spinach (I used a 10 ounce package of spinach.)

6 cups water

1/2 bay leaf

1 teaspoon salt

3 tablespoons butter

3 tablespoons flour

2 cups milk

1 clove garlic or 2 tablespoons chopped onion (I used the chopped onion.)

1/4 teaspoon cayenne (red) pepper

1/4 teaspoon celery salt

1/2 cup cream, if desired

Put spinach and water into a large pan, and bring to a boil using high heat; reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Removed from heat, and puree or press through a sieve. (I used a Foley mill.)

In the meantime, put milk, garlic or onion, and bay leaf in a saucepan. Using medium heat, scald the milk, while stirring occasionally. Remove from heat, and strain. (Discard the garlic or onion and bay leaf.)

Put butter in large pan or dutch oven. Melt using low heat; then stir in the flour. Slowly add scalded milk while stirring constantly. Then stir in the spinach mixture, salt, cayenne pepper, and celery salt. Heat until steamy, then serve.

If desired whip the cream, and put a dollop of the whipped cream on top of each bowl of soup.

http://www.ahundredyearsago.com

 

“A Good Dish for the Meatless Meal” Recipe

A Good Dish for a Meatless Meal

Sometimes the names of dishes in old cookbooks make me smile. The recipe I made for today is called “A Good Dish for the Meatless Meal.” It was one of several recipes in a section on Lenten recipes in an old newspaper recipe supplement.

The recipe made a delightful rice, tomato, and onion casserole topped with creamy melted cheese, and garnished with parsley and paprika. The recipe author was right. It was a good dish. The recipe is a keeper.

Here’s the recipe updated for modern cooks:

Recipe for "A Good Dish for a Meatless Meal"
Source: Source: Mrs. Scott’s Seasonal Cook Books (The North American Newspaper, Philadelphia, Winter, 1921)

I assume that “drippings” refer to the fat created when cooking beef or pork – though I am a bit foggy why meat drippings would be called for in a recipe for a meatless dish. Maybe a hundred years ago “meatless” just meant that there were no chunks of meat. In any case I substituted olive oil for the drippings, but any oil or fat could be used.

A Good Dish for a Meatless Meal

  • Servings: 3 - 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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1 cup rice

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 cup onion, finely chopped

2 cups stewed tomatoes (1 14.5 ounce can)

1 teaspoon salt

1 cup grated American cheese

parsley, chopped

paprika

Preheat oven to 375° F. Cook the rice according to package directions.

In the meantime, heat the olive oil in a skillet and then add the chopped onion. Using medium heat, sauté until the onion is transparent. Stir in the tomatoes and salt, then add the rice. Cook until hot and bubbly then transfer to a casserole dish. Top with the grated cheese. Place in oven and heat until the cheese is melted. Remove from oven and sprinkle with the chopped parsley and paprika.

http://www.ahundredyearsago.com

Old-fashioned Cherry Fritters with Maraschino Sauce

Cherry Fritter on Plate

I recently made a hundred-year-old recipe for Cherry Fritters with Maraschino Sauce. This recipe was delicious, but set aside all preconceptions about what a Cherry Fritter might taste like. These fritters are nothing like modern cake- or doughnut-like fritters. Rather they are a sweet, slightly wiggly, taste treat.

The consistency of the Cherry Fritters is a bit like the consistency of Fried Brie (but the taste is totally different, so it isn’t a good comparison). The recipe calls for a relatively large amount of cornstarch, and only a small amount of flour which results in the unique consistency.

The Cherry Fritters are served with a lovely Maraschino Sauce which contains both Maraschino cherries and the liquid from the cherry jar.

Here’s the original recipe:

Recipes for Cherry Fritters and Maraschino Sauce
Source: The Boston Cooking School Cook Book (1921 Edition)

Here’s the recipe updated for modern cooks:

Cherry Fritters with Maraschino Sauce

  • Servings: 5 - 7
  • Difficulty: moderate
  • Print

Cherry Fritters

2 cups milk + 1/4 cup milk

1/4 cup cornstarch

1/4 cup flour

1/2 cup sugar

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/4 cup cold milk

3 egg yolks (reserve whites)

1/4 cup cold milk

1/2 cup Maraschino cherries, cut into halves (Make sure the cherries are thoroughly drained.)

1/2 cup flour

1 egg + reserved egg whites, beaten

1 cup fine plain breadcrumbs (I put 2 bread slices, that I tore into several pieces, into the blender to make the breadcrumbs.)

shortening or vegetable oil

Mix cornstarch, 1/4 cup flour, sugar, and salt together. Slowly add 1/4 cup cold milk while stirring, then stir in egg yolks. Continue stirring until smooth. Set aside.

Put 2 cups milk in saucepan, and heat using medium heat while stirring constantly until the milk is scalded (180° F.). Slowly stir in the cornstarch mixture, and cook until very thick while stirring constantly (about 5-10 minutes). Remove from heat and stir in the Maraschino cherries. Pour into a buttered 8X8 inch pan. Chill in refrigerate until cold (at least 2 hours).

In the meantime, place flour on a plate or in a small bowl, and place the bread crumbs on another plate or small bowl. Put the beaten egg in a small bowl.

Remove the chilled cherry mixture from the refrigerator and cut into squares. Roll each square in the flour, then in the egg, and finally in the bread crumbs.

Heat about 1/2 inch of shortening or vegetable oil in a skillet, then put the breaded squares in the hot shortening or oil. Fry until lightly browned on the bottom, then gently turn to brown the other side. When browned, remove from the skillet. Drain on paper towels, then serve with Maraschino Sauce.

Maraschino Sauce 

2/3 cup water

1/3 cup sugar

2 tablespoons cornstarch

1/4 cup Maraschino cherries, cut into halves

1/2 cup Maraschino cherry syrup

Put water in a saucepan and bring to a boil.

In the meantime, mix sugar and cornstarch; then gradually add to the boiling water while stirring constantly. Using medium heat, boil for 5 minutes while stirring constantly. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter and Maraschino cherry syrup; then stir in the Maraschino cherry halves.

Cherry Fritters with Maracshino Saucehttp://www.ahundredyearsago.com