Mothers’ Congress Cook Book 1922

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I inherited a cookbook from my grandmother.  The cover is gone so I don’t know what it looked like but the date is 1922.   The Preface states:

“Organized into a working body, the Mother’s Congress of Mount Ayr, presents Mothers who are studying and working for the betterment of Child Welfare.

In its interests financially, this little book is published and sent out by them.”

Followed by: 

“We may live without poetry, music and art.

We may live without conscience and live without heart;

We may live without friends, we may live without books;

But civilized man cannot live without cooks.   —-  Merideth.”

It starts out with 12 points on how to set a table.  Numbers 11 and 12:

11.  Place carving set in front of host, or put carving knife and gravy ladle at his right, and fork at his left.

12.  Place coffee cups and coffee pot at right of hostess.

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The recipes don’t mention oven temperature other than “moderate oven” or “quick oven” and many of them don’t mention how long anything should cook.  Here are a few samples.

Norwegian Stew. – Brown in a large kettle 1 c. lard and butter mixed, 25-cent round steak cut in small pieces, flour thoroughly and stir into the browned lard, continue stirring until meat is brown.  Then add 1 c. flour stirring constantly, set on back of stove and add 2 qts. Boiling water, salt and pepper and let simmer 2 hrs, ½ hr. before serving add enough potatoes of medium size for the meal, stir occasionally as it will stick to kettle.  —  J.A.W.

Molasses Cake.  1 cup molasses, ½ c. sugar, ½ c. butter or lard, ½ tsp each cloves, ginger, cinnamon; 1 tsp. soda in 1 c. boiling water, 2 eggs, well beaten; last, flour to stiffen.  –Mrs. Holman.

And my grandmother’s contribution:

Green Tomato Relish.  – 5 lbs. green tomatoes, 6 large onions, 3 c. brown sugar, 3 c. red peppers, 3 green peppers, 1 tbsp. each of powdered cloves, all spice, celery seed, dry mustard, ½ c. salt, 8 c. vinegar.  Peel and slice tomatoes and onions very thin.  Remove seeds from peppers and chop very fine.  To these add the other ingredients and cook over a moderate fire ½ hr., stirring frequently.  Cover with paraffin. – Mrs. Liggett.

 

Household hints:

Rub the feet every night and morning with bay rum and witch hazel, equal parts, for frost bits.

Turpentine and lard rubbed on throat and chest will often relieve pain from cold.

To carry a mattress without breaking your fingernails (also back) use a broom underneath as a saddle and see how much easier it is.

Use a tbsp. of kerosene to wash windows.  It not only cuts the dirt but is distrastful to flies 

I’m not sure what “distrastful” is.  Maybe a typo.  But you get the idea.

The book ends with a poem.

Receipt for a Happy Day

Take a little dash of cold water,

A little leaven of prayer,

A little bit of sunshine gold,

Dissolved in the morning air.

Add to your meal some merriment,

Add thought for kith and kin,

And the, as a prime ingredient

A plenty of work thrown in.

Flavor it all with essence of love,

And a dash of play.

Let the dear old book and a glance above,

Complete the well spent day.

–Mrs. Smith 

Whatever your recipe is, I hope you have a happy day!! 

 

 

6 thoughts on “Mothers’ Congress Cook Book 1922

  1. What an interesting view of the past. I suppose most people using the book at the time would already pretty much know how to make each dish already or would have a mother right beside them. Have you tried to cook any recipes in the book?

    • Yes, I think they knew how to cook from a young age for the most part and would have known how to gage the time and temperature. Also many of them probably had wood burning stoves so temperature was not something you read on a dial. I have not tried recipes from this particular book although many of them are familiar.

  2. Do you think we can find some green tomatoes at Christmas to try out Fern’s recipe? It doesn’t look that delicious, but I’m curious.

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