From the Archives: Vintage Cookbooks Part 2

I've been sitting in bed resting after a nasty case of stomach flu and was finally able to take more pictures of some of my vintage cookbooks and pamphlets. So thrilling! In this post, I showcase one cookbook and two fun pamphlets.

1. The Settlement Cook Book or "The way to a man's heart", ca. 1938

Oh man, that title! And the cover illustration. Oh boy. haha!

This cookbook really caught my eye, and I actually had the choice between two different editions - 1938 or 1945. I didn't see anything particularly wartime-related in the 1945, so I went for the earlier one because of all the lovely hand-written recipes in the end pages.

The cover was also all grimy, but it's the kind with a shiny shellac kind of surface to it, so I cleaned it and it looks and feels much better!


Lizzie Black Kander, the author of this book, was an extraordinary woman! She was a Jewish woman who contributed much of her life to helping immigrants. She helped establish a Settlement House in Milwaukee, Wisconsin modeled on Jane Addams's Hull House. The Settlement Cook Book was first published in 1901 as a pamphlet of recipes for the students of her cooking class at the Settlement. The book continued to be published, and by 2004, it had sold 1.5 million copies. It is still in print. 

You can read more about this woman's amazing contributions at the Jewish Women's Archive.

Aren't these hand-written recipes great?!

 What I love about this cookbook are the different menu ideas for camp cooking, wedding meals, and different holidays - even Washington's Birthday!

2. Spry's What Shall I Cook Today? - 124 thrifty, healthful tested recipes, ca. approx. 1940s

This is just a fun little pamphlet produced by the food company featuring their product - Spry. Spry was a shortening. I love all the photos and illustrations!

Front and back covers

I love this Spry pastry mix. I wonder who came up with the idea first? Bisquick or Spry?
What's great, is that they tell you how to make your own, so you don't have to buy the pre-made stuff and can save money.
Now all I need is that nifty tin to keep it in...

Yay! Cake!

This recipe for Butterscotch Cake sounded so yummy!
 3. Toastmaster's The Party's On - New Games and Entertainment Ideas, ca. approx. late 1930s-early 1940s

This is a very small pamphlet with party ideas including games and recipe ideas all featuring: toast! Of course, there's a nice advertisement inside featuring Toastmaster's latest toaster and waffle maker models. It's unique because it's reversible - one side for adults, the other for kids.
The adult party ideas

The Kids' side with ideas for their own parties
 I like the idea that they emphasize about children - that the toaster helps them feel they can do everything themselves for their own party. Their independence is assured by the toasters "automated design" without burned fingers! :-) This pamphlet inspired me enough to put a scene in my recently-published book The War Between Us, where my characters have a toast party. It's such a great idea! Why don't we do these anymore??


Check out the peanut butter and mayo idea under the Children's Parties section! I grew up eating Peanut Butter & Miracle Whip (aka salad dressing) sandwiches. This is the first reference for that combination that I found! 


This series will be continued with more fascinating cookbooks soon!

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