Sunday, September 25, 2022

Mr. Borden's concentrated and condensed milk

In 1856, Gail Borden (1801-1874) patented a Vacuum Pan "for the Concentration and Preservation of Milk. 

Barbados deforested due to sugar production, Beekeeping in Bhutan, Jacques P├ępin (artist, chef), British Saffron and other talks.

Friday, September 9, 2022

Sunday, August 28, 2022

Well pump or bucket

This 1865 article described the modern options to get water from a small well.
September talks are now up, and the first week's talks are below. As usual, there are some interesting talks this month, including a Medieval Feast Symposium.

Sunday, August 21, 2022

Barn-door Fowl and Dunghill Fowl - Chickens

There were many breeds of chickens but the 'plain' common ones around the farm were termed Dunghill fowl (Markham 1614) and Barn door fowl.
A concise, clever description and the image is from 1900. Recipe from 1829 and other excerpts, below.

Sunday, August 14, 2022

Articles found in a Kitchen Drawer 1824

Like now, a variety of useful and useless items were tossed into drawers of the kichen table and dresser, making them "untidy hidingplaces." "A grater and nutmeg— the key of the jack" to "a pen without ink" and a "lump of old suet" were items from the 1824 humorous poem. More organized suggestions were listed in a book from 1867. Painting with a drawer, 1738

Sunday, August 7, 2022

Recipe manuscript - school project at a woman's college c1831

Ann Augusta Forman Cooley (1810-1890) filled this composition book with recipes, possibly started as a school project. Raised a Quaker in NJ, then from 1828 to 1831 she attended Van Doren's Collegiate Institute for Young Ladies in Brooklyn Heights, perhaps the first woman's college. Click images to enlarge.

Saturday, July 30, 2022

Dining at Jefferson's White House

Quotes from people who dined with the President. Honore Julien (1760/1–1830) was Thomas Jefferson’s French chef for both terms (1801-1809). Image 1807.

Sunday, July 24, 2022

Walker's "artificial cold" (ice) for wine, ice cream 1828

Richard Walker spent many years developing "artificial cold" - making ice using chemicals (writings from 1787 to at least 1832). He was the Apothecary to the Radcliffe Infirmary at Oxford from 1781 to 1805. He heard that an ice cream apparatus was being sold that used one of his 'freezing powders' so he investigated.

Friday, July 15, 2022

A Rice Dish with Peaches & Maryland food history taped talks

Rice pudding with peaches on the bottom from Elizabeth Ellicott Lea's Domestic Cookery, 1845... the first Maryland cookbook. Rice was boiled in milk, sweetened, put over peach slices, then baked for two hours. When warm it was like other rice puddings, but it compacted as it cooled.
Many Md. taped talks, below.

Saturday, July 9, 2022

Octagon cast iron ovens

This unusual oven in the Kew Palace kitchen was made by the famous Carron Company of Scotland, and was restored in 2012 to its 1789 appearance under King George III (1738-1820). Cast iron octagon ovens were noted as early as 1751. The octagonal ovens were heated by the fire in the fire box, the ashes fell below, like later Rumford Roasters and other tin block ovens (pictures below).

Sunday, July 3, 2022

Drying herbs and paper packets for seeds or dried herbs

Dry herbs in sun, no, dry in shade (Miller 1769). Hang in "small bunches" no, that dried them too much (Loudon 1835). Dry in oven (Randolph 1824, Beeton 1863). Dry in bag in oven (1893). Store dried in: brown paper sewn like sack (Culpeper 1809), paper packets (Loudon 1835), covered boxes (Mollard 1802), corked bottles (Randolph 1824), bacon racks (1923).

Saturday, June 25, 2022

Strawberries and Cream

In time for Wimbledon... where they still serve Strawberries and Cream... a sketch by Robert Seymour, 1835, with cream pitcher, sugar container with spoon and pottles (cone baskets for strawberries). Pottles are so interesting that I did a blog post with 15 images. HERE

Monday, June 20, 2022

Iced Tea

June is National Iced Tea month... though not sure if it is official... and June 10 is Iced Tea Day. There are several talks on tea. Even a multiday conference. Ad from 1906 magazine.

Sunday, June 12, 2022

Glass bee hives 1772, 1828 ... and 1650s

There is an intriguing talk this Thursday on late 17th century glass hives. GLASS! In this 1772 example, bees entered the bottom section then moved up through a hole into the middle section to build a hive. Then a hole was opened into the top glass section where the bees continued making honey combs on the two cross bars.

Sunday, June 5, 2022

Elder flowers to make ... Grape Water Ice

The other year I noticed while doing a blog post HERE on the 6 cookbooks (describe freezing pots/tubs and sabotieres) by people who worked at Negri’s, then Gunter’s tea shop; that half (Nutt, Jarrin, Jeanes) included an ice made from elder flowers... called Grape Water Ice. And yet, grapes could also be used to make Grape Water Ice.

Saturday, May 28, 2022

Army chef used umbrella to protect fried croquettes - 1854

Memorial Day... never forget.

During the Crimean War, the chef for Prince George (Lt. Gen. & cousin of Queen Victoria) was preparing a dish of fried croquettes in the rain before the Battle of Alma (Sept. 1854)

Sunday, May 22, 2022

Barrel butter churns 1758-1805

It is spring, so time for another post on butter. Over the years I have covered butter types and shapes, and a wide variety of churns. HERE. Instead of plunger churns, with the up and down motion, the barrel churns used a circular motion. Pictured is a c1900 churn of my great grandmother from an eastern PA farm.

Friday, May 13, 2022

More cookbook talks

Eliza Acton (1799-1859) and Isabella Beeton (1836-1865) talk in the British Library series. Alice Urbach’s popular How to cook in Vienna! A cookery and household book for home-style cooking, first published in 1935 (500 pages) was stolen for another book when she was forced out of Austria by the Nazi. TAPED. "Betty Crocker" first published in 1921, TAPED. Laura Shapiro's book, TAPED, and other talks.

Saturday, May 7, 2022

Mother's Day



For the Moms


Le Benedicite (Saying Grace) by Jean Baptiste Simeon Chardin c1740, in the Louvre.

Monday, April 25, 2022

Fewer muffin street sellers by 1896

The decline of muffin street sellers was described in the following 1896 article. The muffins were still made by older ladies in their poor homes and sold to stores or a few remaining street sellers, who had a hard time making a living. Earlier that century there were 500 muffin street vendors in London with their tinkling little bells, traditionally starting on Oct 15.