Our Grandmothers were experts at stretching their grocery dollars to feed large families! At times, it was necessary for them to be very creative cooks - making do with what they had on hand or what was readily available.

Take a step back in time learn how Grandma did it - much of her knowledge can be applied to our modern households!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Uncooked Salad Dressing

We were making this at home long before bottled salad dressing became available.  I remember it being one of the first things we made in our Cooking project in 4-H!

1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup tomato catsup
Juice of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon salt
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup vinegar
1 small onion, grated
1 teaspoon paprika

Put ingredients in jar and shake until well blended.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Pottery by donovan, LLC

Check out this beautiful handmade stoneware - made in the USA!  Visit Donovan here to view more and to place orders.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Pineapple Salad Recipe

I remember my Aunt making this for family dinners.  This recipe has the "old fashioned" cooked dressing.

1 can pineapple
1 egg
1 tablespoon cornstarch
4 bananas
1/2 cup sugar
10 marshmallows
Nut meats

Drain juice from pineapple and place on stove in saucepan.  Make a thickening of the egg yolk, cornstarch and sugar and add to the juice.  Cook until thick.  Remove from stove and add the marshmallows.  Beat the egg white and fold in.  Pour this mixture over the sliced pineapple and bananas.  Add a few nuts if desired.

Looking for farm fresh produce?

Check out the Local Harvest website for local farmers' markets.  Enter your zip code to search for those in your area.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Grandma's Never Fail Devil's Food Cake

Mix and sift:
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups flour
Pinch of salt
2 tablespoons cocoa
1 teaspoon soda

1/2 cup sour cream
1/2 cup fat
1 beaten egg
1/2 cup hot water

Add sifted dry ingredients to liquid, beat well.  Bake in moderate oven.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Homemade Fudge Sauce

Just a few simple ingredients to make this ice cream topping!

1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 cup cocoa
1 cup cold water
1 teaspoon vanilla

Mix sugar and cocoa.  Add water and boil 15 minutes or until slightly thickened.  Cool and add vanilla.  Store in sealed jar in refrigerator.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

"Excellent Cheap Cake" Recipe

1/2 cup Spry or butter (Spry was an early version of Crisco)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup sugar
2 eggs, unbeaten
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
2 cup sifted flour
3/4 cup milk

Combine Spry, salt and vanilla.  Add sugar gradually and cream until light.  Add eggs, one at a time.  Add baking powder to flour, sift 3 times.  Add dry ingredients to wet and mix well.  Bake at 350 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Update - Don't use castile soap and vinegar together!

See this information from Dr. Bonner's about mixing castile soap and vinegar and adapt any homemade cleaning recipes accordingly!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Completely off topic but useful recipe...

Homemade dishwasher detergent using castile soap.  Note - I have removed this link after learning that mixing castile and vinegar actually cancels out the cleaning action of the soap (see above).  I am in the process of searching for an alternative that does not contain vinegar.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Remember these?

For years, Betty Crocker had points coupons on their products which could be redeemed for silverware and other cookware and cookbooks.  I received this coupon in my bag of goodies purchased on Ebay and with a little research found this information.

Savory Beans and Meat Balls

I received in the mail a recent Ebay purchase of a couple of old cookbooks and some recipe clippings.  Included was this one from a Pet Milk label.  The collection appears to be more of the 60's era, but one looked to be a pretty frugal dish.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Just "Cookies"

I ran across this recipe in an old community cookbook - the name is simply "Cookies". The recipe calls for "Spry" which this ad indicates was a brand of vegetable shortening - I assume something similar to Crisco.


1/2 cup Spry
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons milk
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
2 eggs, well beaten
2 cups sifted flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda

Combine Spry, salt, vanilla and nutmeg and blend. Add sugar gradually and cream well. Add beaten eggs and milk, mix well. Sift four with baking powder and soda. Add to creamed mixture, blending well. Drop from teaspoon on greased baking sheet. Let stand a few minutes, then flatten by stamping with a glass covered with a damp cloth. Sprinkle with sugar. Bake in moderately hot oven (375 degrees F) 8 to 12 minutes. Makes 3 1/2 dozen cookies.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Quick One Egg Cake

1 1/2 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup melted lard
1 egg
1/2 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla

Sift dry ingredients. Add cooled shortening. Add eggs beaten with milk and vanilla. Beat well by hand 1 minute. Bake at 350 degrees 25 to 30 minu

Another household use for vinegar...

For a great shower cleaner - mix equal parts of white vinegar and Dawn dish soap in a spray bottle. Spray on, let set a few minutes and rinse off.

Wednesday, February 29, 2012


In Grandma's day, you didn't enter the kitchen without donning your apron. Over the years we seem to have gotten away from this tradition. After numerous attempts to remove kitchen stains from clothing, I realized that maybe it was time to use some of my fabric stash and create an apron. This is the pattern that I'm going to be using.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Clara on Youtube

Some wonderful videos on Youtube of this lady demonstrating her depression era recipes!

I'm Back!

Okay - so I got a little busy - and I completely forgot about this blog. Ran across it today while starting a new blog for family photos and thought I should rejuvenate it.