World War II Applesauce Cake

One of the dessert recipes that turns up frequently in my cook books from the first half of the 20th century is Applesauce Cake. The fad for this cake began during rationing in World War I and its popularity peaked in World War II. Once rationing was no longer needed, the cake faded from the [...] Read more »

Irish Scones

It’s pretty rare for me to get excited about a modern cook book. My mind is just too much in the past. Recently, however, I stumbled on a cook book that I just couldn’t resist: Home Made Winter by Yvette Van Boven (2012). I loved the book’s design, photos of Ireland, and recipes for everything [...] Read more »

Coffee Cake with a Few Surprises

It’s a cold January day and after coming in from snow shoeing I thought it would be nice to bake something from Aunt Lil’s recipe book. The book opened to a recipe called “Rich Coffee Cake.” The page is incredibly stained, so I assume Aunt Lil liked this recipe and used it. Like many cake [...] Read more »

Gum Drop Cake for Christmas – Really!

For a year now I’ve been staring at the Gum Drop Cake recipe in Aunt Lil’s cook book. Really? Gum Drop Cake? I just couldn’t imagine it tasting good. And I never came across a recipe to follow in any of my cook books – until now. A recent purchase is a 1945 cookbook called, [...] Read more »

Previewing our Boston Baked Bean Supper

Over the weekend Dan and I did a test run on the traditional supper (a.k.a. dinner to some of you) that he remembers eating every Saturday night while growing up in Quincy, a suburb of Boston. Dan’s family are true New Englanders with family on his father’s side going back to 18th-century Kittery, Maine. The [...] Read more »

Going Bananas for Banana Bread

If you’re like me you always seen to have over-ripe bananas around the kitchen. Until recently they would end up in the compost, but now thanks to my growing collection of vintage cookbooks I have a wealth of banana bread recipes that call for 2-3 bananas for baking. I’ve got two good tasting, healthy, and [...] Read more »

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