Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Discovering Hints - Culinary Tips of the Past

My ideal night involves cheap wine and well anything, especially when related to food. If you follow me here at County Meanderings, you know I have an undying passion for anything food (and thrift store) related. As I was working on a piece of writing for a local foodie magazine tonight, I stumbled upon something I thought was too brilliantly lovely not to share. 

There's a warm nostalgia that wraps itself around me when I happen upon notes of the past. If you've ever recieved an old book from your Grandma, you know what I'm talking about. You're flipping through your handed-down gift and bam - something intimate and personal strikes you. Tonight, I had one of those moments in the recipe book I was working through. I stumbled upon a page a midst a bunch of recipes, fresh from the typewriter circa 1938 that was titled "Hint." I'll share a photo but incase the clarity doesn't do it justice, I've transcribed it with all original punctation (or lack thereof). 

Take a look:


When mashing potatoes heat the milk and butter before adding to potatoes then you wont be so apt to have lumps. 

When cooking fresh green beans, asparagus or any other green vegetable add a lump of sugar to  the water  and the veg. wont change color and it brings out the taste. 

When cooking any cut veg. in small pieces they cook quicker and taste much nicer it also saves vitamins and gas bills. (LOL!)

When cooking veg. either pour boiling water over them or put them into boiling water it saves flavor. Most veg. need just enough water to cover them. 

If a recipe calls for onions it usually adds to the flavor if they are browned a bit before adding. 

If you cook fresh beets don't cut the stems off too close or they will lose all their color.
And give them plenty of time to cook; bacon or salt pork added to the water they are cooked in is a nice addition if you like it. (My kind of gal!) 

Get a scraper for peeling potatoes, carrots & things it sure helps. 

When cooking anything in the oven be sure to preheat the oven before putting the food in. 

If you want whole leaves of lettuce for a salad remove the core of the head and run cold water in it this will seperate the leaves so they can be removed easily without tearing. 

If you'd like the recipe for Gawumpkis (?) I'll have Elsie write it out for me. (Totally want to know what a Gawumpki is!)

I've got a million ideas but it takes more time than I have I shall have to let this be continued. (Ugh!) 

How amazing is it that decades later essentially all these "hints" are still relevant? Anyone who spends any amount of time in the kitchen will undeniably appreciate at least one of these. I'm eager to try the lettuce one this weekend! 

Just thought I'd share, as this little page brought me some much needed joy this evening! As did my $6 Entwined Food Network Chardonnay - give that a try, too. 




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  2. Enjoyed the article! I always preheat the oven.