1 tablespoon grated orange rind
fresh orange juice
Feeling all domestic today.
I've got my vintage apron on, yummy smells filling the house from the oven and the laundry is hung out to dry - bedding actually, so tonight the blankets and pillow cases will have that sweet, fresh dried-in-the-cold-air-and-sunshine smell.
So today is my first...
...and our recipe today is
Grandma Porter's Crumb Cake.
So first I'll give you the recipe as written, followed by some of my "tweaks".
Now this grandma didn't mind taking a little shortcut by using prepared cake mix, and that's just fine with me. There are times we all need that, so thanks to Grandma Porter for letting us know not EVERYTHING has to be made from scratch!!
Crumb Cake from the Kitchen of Grandma Porter
1 Package yellow cake mix - prepare according to instructions and pour into buttered and floured 10" X 15" jelly roll pan. Bake in 350 degree oven for 20 min.
While cake is cooling, blend topping ingredients in a large bowl:
2 cups flour
1/3 cup sugar
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 sticks butter
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp nutmeg
2 tsp cinnamon
confectioners sugar (to sprinkle on top)
Place mixture on hot cake and return to oven for additional 10 minutes.
Remove cake from oven and cool.
Sprinkle with confectioners sugar.
**I used a 12" X 9" pan because the jelly roll pan just looked too shallow to me and I wanted the crumbs to be thicker and not spread out too much.
**The cake mix I used was Betty Crocker Super Moist Yellow Cake Mix.
**When blending the toppings, I made sure my butter was nice and cold, and I chopped it up into smaller pieces before adding it to the other topping ingredients. I used unsalted butter, but added a dash of salt to the mixture. I used my hands to blend the topping so I would get a nice crumby texture.
**After baking the topping for 10 minutes, I decided I wanted it a little more golden brown, so I put it back in for an additional 4 minutes.
**I added a dash more vanilla and a dash more cinnamon - just because.
The luscious smells coming out of your oven will attract people from blocks away, so be prepared!
This is good.
This is soooooooo Good.
Do yourselves a favor and have a Big Hunk of this cake while it is still warm-ish.
You will be happy you did.
Many, many thanks Grandma Porter.
Once upon a time, I had Vintage Recipe Thursdays on my blog. On Thursdays I would post a recipe from one of my vintage cookbooks, and I would cook it up with step by step instructions. I would also tweak the recipes a bit to fit today's kind of cooking - maybe some lower fat substitutions or some extra ingredients that I thought would make it a little better, but I would always include the original recipe the way it was first published.
And it was fun.
And I wound up cooking some yummy things that I and my family quite enjoyed.
But something was missing.
Firstly, it was hard to always have it ready to post each and every Thursday. Sometimes by the time I was able to cook, the lighting was not the way it should have been for pictures in my one window kitchen. Or I was missing ingredients because I did not properly plan ahead and write down what I needed before I went shopping at the market - like I know I should have done because my 40-something, post-kid brain does not have the memory it once had. And etc., etc.
And secondly, but most important of all, something didn't feel right.
Oh yes, I enjoyed searching through my old cookbooks with their colorful graphics and sometimes frightening recipes (prune whip with Jello, creamed salmon with beets). And I still loved my vintage cookbooks.
But it didn't feel personal and special enough. I didn't feel the love.
And now, by George, I think I've got it!
Very often at Estate Sales, I come across a treasured recipe box containing a lifetime collection of handwritten recipes on index cards, together with newspaper clippings and recipes cut out of magazines. I always happily take these home with me.
These are the recipes that touch me.
These are the recipes that I can picture being served at family gatherings and holidays with great love and affection.
These are what was missing.
I read through these treasure boxes with great respect. I would be lying if I said I didn't shed a tear or two when I read some of the names... "Lillian's Spritz Cookies", "Grandma Pat's Apple Strudel", "Aunt Flora's Cherry Mash". I think of the friends and family that contributed to this loving collection. And then I think of my own family and the loved ones who are no longer here.
There are personal notes included in the recipes... "Don't over mix!", "Make sure flour is unsifted", "This is Dad's favorite".
How could I not love these? This is the "special" I was looking for.
So... two things. Vintage Recipe Thursday is officially retired. I will not put the pressure of promising a recipe every Thursday if I cannot deliver. There, that makes life easier, doesn't it?
AND, the recipes I share and cook will be from my loving collection of handwritten recipes.
So much sweeter, I think.
Starting soon, I will have a new feature on my blog...
Vintage Handwritten Recipes from the Heart
And I will post them every few weeks or so, or maybe even every week when I am able. I'll cook them up and share it step by step.
Look for the first one in a few weeks!!
Oh, and I cannot leave without sharing a little spring dreaming from Ollie...
I always tell him he wins the Sweet Face Award.
Happy Day Friends!
I was so excited, and it truly could not have been more appropriate, when this yummy luscious book that I ordered from Amazon showed up at my door right on Valentine's Day.
It is written by my sweetest of friends, Koralee Teichroeb. Many of you probably know her from her lovely blog, Bluebird Notes, but if you have not visited her there - oh, please do. There you will find not only inspiration for your mind, but for your heart as well.
I was so excited when her book came out, I could hardly wait to order it.
Not only is it beautiful to look at, but it is filled with the yummiest of goodies to make for your tummy...
...and recipes for your creative soul as well.
This is a book that I will treasure and go to again and again for inspiration and cheer.
Thank you sweet Koralee!!!!!
Right now, I have a big pot simmering on the stove, where I am making a homemade chicken stock. I don't know what it is, but I can't seem to get enough soup these days. I crave it! (No, NOT for the reason one might think.)
Maybe it is the association with comfort, warmth and security. Maybe it is my body asking for more veggies. Maybe it's just because it's winter. But whatever the reason, I am lovin' it in a big way.
And while I was sitting here with that scrumptious aroma filling the air, I started thinking about the colors of Singapore during JW's last trip, and noticing the colors all around me, right here in my own little home, in my own little world.
There are many.
So I started snapping pictures.
And I would love to share some colors with you...
This sweet Jesus picture tugs at my heart. It is obviously very old, and I picture that it must have been given to a newlywed couple many years ago, which they then hung lovingly in their new home. Did they go on to have a happy life? Were they blessed with many years of love? I hope so.
There is a nice story of how I got this picture.
Last summer I, JW and My Girl went to an outdoor flea market in Pennsylvania. We were walking around admiring all the many treasures when this, and another picture of roses, caught my eye.
I first asked the price of the the other picture, and a very nice man quoted a sum that was just a bit too much for me that day. Then I asked him the price of this picture. He looked at me and My Girl and he said, "It's yours. All I ask is that you say a prayer for me."
I was touched, and this dear picture came home with us. Needless to say, we both said a prayer for that very nice man with the kind heart that night.
My ever growing kokeshi girlies.
Brightly colored enamel bowls I can't get enough of.
Illustrations from a vintage children's book I picked up at the Salvation Army.
More you say?
Another enamel bowl and a vintage textured painting of roses I was also given for free last summer at a tag sale. (I was on a roll.)
A wreath made from little paper parasols.
Now I thought I was brilliant when I came up with this idea, only to discover it had been done - many times - before. But, oh well!
Notice the dangly buttons in the center. Yes - me and my buttons - we love each other.
A vintage quilt, so lovingly made.
Bright and beautiful vintage afghans warming themselves in the sun.
Vintage slips, softly lady-like.
And just a little bit more?
Vintage jewelry on an old adjustable dress form, which I got for $1.00 at a garage sale. Yes - ONE DOLLAR! You bet I skipped happily out of there that day.
I had picked up these 2 old wooden shoes several months ago at the thrift shop. They were just plain wood, which I eventually decided to dress up a bit. So on went a bit of paint and pretty vintage decals.
Some thrifted silk flowers...
and lastly, the soup I am making...
Some very pretty colors, indeed, in this soup!
I call it Hodge Podge Soup.
You basically add whatever veggies you have hanging around in your fridge or freezer to your homemade chicken stock, season it, and you have your tasty soup.
This particular batch includes sweet corn kernels, carrots, red, green and yellow peppers, spinach, onions, peas, orzo pasta, chicken meat and lots of freshly ground pepper!
Thank you for sharing all of today's colors with me.
Vintage Recipe Thursday is back!
This is as simple as it gets with super yummy results. This pie is surprisingly light, smooth and not too sweet - and it goes down REAL easy! The coffee flavor is very refreshing too - like an iced coffee pie.
The recipe is from Good Housekeeping's Party Pie Book, 1958.
You will need...
1 1/3 cups crushed 2 3/4 in. chocolate wafers
3 tbsp. melted butter or margarine
1 pkg. instant chocolate pudding
1 pkg. instant vanilla pudding
1 1/2 cups milk
1 pint soft coffee ice cream
In greased 9 in. pie plate, mix together chocolate wafer crumbs and butter until crumbly.
With back of spoon, press mixture to bottom and side of plate.
In large electric-mixer bowl, with mixer at medium speed, or "cream", beat chocolate and vanilla puddings with milk until smooth and thickened - about 2 minutes.
(**I used fat free, sugar free puddings and low fat milk.)
Add ice cream and continue beating until blended.
(**With the ice cream, I did not skimp, and used the real stuff... Haagen Dazs Coffee Ice Cream.)
Pour into pie shell. Refrigerate at least 4 hours before serving.
Now, if you're anything like me, I always have trouble with pudding based pies not being firm enough when I cut into them.
So, with this pie, after refrigerating it over night, I put it in the freezer for about an hour before cutting it, and voila! It was just firm enough to cut nicely, but was not fully frozen.
I hope this recipe is something you might want to try!
Hoping you have a lovely day.
Oh My Dears, I did not have time to actually bake this recipe yet, although I do intend to. But I did not want to miss sharing something with you on Vintage Recipe Thursday.
I know we are all busy bees right now, but sometimes we find that we still need to bake that one last thing, perhaps as a last minute gift. Or we have misjudged just how much we needed to bake for the holidays (or have eaten much of it before the holidays even get here!) and we are looking for something simple yet yummy to make.
These cookies are just right!
I myself have taken to ending each day with a nice, comforting hot cup of tea, and I think these cookies sound like a lovely way to include something a little sweet.
The next Vintage Recipe Thursday will be on January 5, 2012.
Hope you enjoy!
Feeling cheesy? Today's vintage recipe is for you! All I can say is yum.
This is another one dish meal, and is easy and quick to make.
From Good Housekeeping's Egg and Cheese, Spaghetti and Rice Dishes, 1958...
Susan's Macaroni, Tomato and Cheese
2 cups macaroni (I used elbow.)
4 tsp. butter or margarine
3/4 cup fresh bread crumbs
4 tsp. minced onions
2 tbsp. butter or margarine
1 tbsp. flour
1/4 tsp. dry mustard
3/4 tsp. salt
2 cups milk (I used 2%.)
2 cups (1/2 lb.) grated Cheddar cheese (I used reduced fat.)
2 medium tomatoes, in 1/2 in. slices
Start heating oven to 400 degrees.
Cook macaroni as package directs; drain.
In double boiler, melt 4 tsp. butter; toss with bread crumbs; set aside.
In same double boiler, combine onion, 2 tbsp. butter, flour, mustard, salt, pepper;
Stir in milk; cook, stirring often, until smooth.
Add 1 1/2 cups of cheese. Stir until melted.
In 1 1/2-qt. casserole, place half of macaroni, all but 2 or 3 tomato slices, then rest of macaroni.
Pour on cheese sauce; sprinkle with rest of cheese and buttered crumbs; arrange rest of tomato slices on top.
Bake 20 minutes. Makes 6 to 8 servings.
This is very delicious! Warm, gooey, cheesy and crunchy, and the tomatoes add a nice little tang.
I hope you'll give this a try.
If you have any requests for recipes for future Vintage RecipeThursdays, just leave me a comment or post on my Facebook Page. I'll do my best!
For today's Vintage Recipe, I thought a casserole might be just the right thing as we all get busier and busier preparing for the holidays. It's so nice to be able to have a whole meal in one dish, and this recipe can be made ahead of time and refrigerated until you are ready to bake it.
This recipe is from the 1958 Good Housekeeping's Casserole Book.
Martha's Company Casserole
4 cups noodles (1/2 lb.)
1 tbsp. butter or margarine
1 lb. ground beef
2 8-oz. can tomato sauce
1/2 lb. cottage cheese (1 cup)
1 8-oz. package soft cream cheese
1/4 cup sour cream
1/3 cup scallions
1 tbsp. minced green pepper
2 tbsp. melted butter or margarine
Cook noodles as package directs; drain.
Meanwhile, in butter in skillet, saute beef until browned. (*I used olive oil instead of butter). Stir in tomato sauce. Remove from heat. (*The directions do not say anything about draining the fat before adding the sauce, but I did.)
Combine cottage cheese, cream cheese, sour cream, scallions and green peppers. (*I used lower fat versions of all of the cheeses. I also used red pepper instead of green because that was what I had in the fridge.)
In a 2 qt. casserole, spread half of the noodles; cover with cheese mixture;
...then cover with rest of noodles. Pour melted butter over noodles, then tomato-meat sauce. Refrigerate.
(*I sprinkled a little bit of low fat cheddar cheese on top too.)
About 1 hour before serving, start heating oven to 375 degrees. Bake casserole 45 min. Makes 6 servings.
YUM! It comes out all cheesy and bubbly, and reminded me very much of a homemade Hamburger Helper-type dinner. Which sometimes is not so bad! A little bit of comfort food, after a long busy day of shopping and decorating, is a real nice thing.
I would make a salad with it, and it would be a perfect meal I think even the little kiddles would like.
And a little eye-candy for dessert! Vintage casserole dishes...
I, of course, love the chicken one.
OK, so now that you ate dinner, back to wrapping presents and decorating that tree!!
Yesterday, in an effort to escape the heat and feel like we were accomplishing something, My Girl and I headed to our local thrift store. It’s a big, airy old warehouse, and even though there is no air conditioning, it is always pleasantly cool and breezy. The mission was to get baskets, lots of them. The usage would include storing misc. stuff around the house in them, and also to use them to give gifts of veggies from my garden. Since the thrift shop charges 50 cents to $3 for them, this is quite affordable. And it’s so nice to give veggies in a basket with a little vintage towel underneath. So sweet!
Here are a few that we came home with.
Pretty nice, huh?
And see what’s peeking out there on top?
Take a closer look.
Yup, a wire chicken basket. Corny, yes, but I have wanted one for some unknown reason and have been searching for a while now. For $1.50, I snatched it up.
Also, look further down in the pile.
I picked up a big ‘ole metal colander, which, on the spur of the moment, I thought might look cute in the garden with some annuals planted in it.
Speaking of the garden, as I had predicted, we ARE up to our ears in pickles.
But this is not such a bad thing.
At first, I made bread and butter refrigerator pickles. Although my family liked them, they were waaayyy too sweet for me. When I think of pickles, I think of the pickles of my childhood. We used to go to a place called Stern’s Pickle Works.
It was a cool old building with a wooden floor and big barrels of the most delicious, garlicky pickles I have ever had. I wanted to recreate THOSE pickles in a refrigerator pickle recipe.
I think I may have done it!
Would you like the recipe?
Good, I was hoping you would say yes!
Refrigerator Garlic Dill Cucumber Pickles
* Fresh Dill
*Pickle Sized Cucumbers (cut into spears)
*Chopped Fresh Garlic (don't be stingy!)
*1 tbsp. pickling spice
*Crushed dried red hot pepper to taste (I omitted this, but if you like things spicy - go for it!)
*Brine - 3/4 cp. distilled white vinegar
*4 tbsp. Kosher salt to each qt. of water
In a gallon jar (ingredients can be divided up into smaller jars if needed), layer fresh dill on the bottom and lots of chopped fresh garlic, 1 tbsp. pickling spice, some crushed red pepper. Pack in pickle spears, then add more dill.
For the brine, combine 3/4 cup distilled white vinegar and 4 tablespoons of Kosher salt to each quart of water that has been boiled and cooled first.
Poor brine over pickles, filling up to top of jar.
Refrigerate. Pickles will stay good for several months.
Hope you enjoy them.
Keep cool and keep dreaming...