Drink

WW2 Ration Cook-in: Beverage

I’m splitting up the beverage and dessert today because this is grocery day and I need ingredients for my dessert. I’m hopeful that my local store will have what I need. I’ve heard rumors that they even have toilet paper!

Today’s recipe comes from the booklet 300 Tasty, Healthful Dairy Dishes published by the Culinary Arts Institute in 1940. I was looking for something different to try, so I thought I’d make this shake recipe. It’s not a shake like we know now. It’s more of a flavored milk drink with ginger ale.

Ginger Pear Shake

  • 1 8oz can pears
  • 1 qt milk
  • Ginger Ale

Press pears though sieve. Mix pulp and juice, add milk, and pour into tall glasses. Fill glasses with ginger ale.

Results

I’m disappointed in this drink. I love pears, so I was excited to try a drink with pears in it. The shake tasted like milk and ginger ale, and was a little too chunky for me. We tried with different amounts of ginger ale, and didn’t like any of them. We also tried without the ginger ale and it just tasted like milk. This is one recipe I don’t recommend. If you are looking for a period drink, there are several others on the blog that are delicious. Click the drink tab for more ideas.

Don’t forget to join us on Instagram! There’s still time to cook with us!

Frosted Apricot Milk

It was really warm here today, and I wanted to find a cold drink recipe to enjoy outside. I found an interesting one, but I’ll be honest–we modernized the instructions. I very rarely do that when I’m working with historical recipes. I try to keep the methods as historically accurate as possible. We turned this recipe into a modern milkshake by putting all of the ingredients in a blender, but I still wanted to share it with you.

The recipe comes from a 48-page booklet published by the Culinary Arts Institute in 1940. It’s called The Dairy Book and it is part of a series of specialty cookbooks that include titles about breads, candies, leftovers, and so on. The cookbook was created to provide home front housewives a variety of recipes that helped add milk to the diet, something the introduction stated was hard to find at the time. The cookbook has a variety of recipes that range from desserts and beverages like today’s Frosted Apricot Milk to appetizers, soups, and entrees.

Frosted Apricot Milk

  • 1 c cooked apricots and juice
  • 3 c milk
  • 1/2 pint vanilla ice cream

Press apricots through a sieve. Mix apricot pulp and milk. Put ice cream in a pitcher. Pour milk mixture over ice cream. Stir until slightly mixed. Serves 4-6.

Results

We pureed the apricots in a food processor. Then we put the milk, apricots, and ice cream in the blender and mixed it well. If you followed the recipe it would be a lumpier mixture, but we really like the smooth texture of a milkshake. The apricot flavor was mild. If you make this, you might consider adjusting the amount of apricots to add more flavor.

This was an easy milkshake recipe for today. Using a blender and food processor is much less labor-intensive than using a sieve and stirring by hand. I think it’s valuable to occasionally make these recipes in a more modern way. Adapting recipes makes it easier to add them to our repertoire of dishes we eat in our everyday lives, keeping old-style, often forgotten recipes alive for more generations to enjoy.

One last note: Warm pureed apricots also make a nice sundae topping.

Let me know if you try this recipe. Which method did you use?

Orange Lime Fizz

I haven’t tested a drink recipe in a while. The weather has been warm here and we’ve been enjoying hanging out on our patio lately. I like to have a cool drink to sip while I’m outside, so I thought this would be a great time to add another drink post.

This is from the 1944 edition of The Good Housekeeping Cook Book. It’s pretty quick to make, but if there are more than three or four of you drinking it, you’ll want to at least double the recipe. Four of us had average size servings of this drink, but there wasn’t enough left for anyone to have second helpings.

Orange Lime Fizz

  • 2 c orange juice
  • 1/2 c granulated sugar
  • 12 springs mint (cut this up)
  • 4 tbsp lime juice
  • 1 12 oz bottle (1 1/2 c) chilled carbonated water
  • ice

Heat 1 c of the orange juice to a boil. Add the sugar and the mint. Cover and cool. Strain and then add the remaining orange juice and the lime juice. Just before serving, add the carbonated water and ice. This recipe makes 3 3/4 c before adding the ice. Corn syrup may replace half of the sugar.

Results

I was surprised at the mixed results this drink received. Four of us were home to try it, and the opinions were split 50/50. My husband, who is not a fan of carbonated water, thought the addition of the bubbly liquid ruined it for him. My teenage son thought it was good, but way too sweet for him to want to make it again. Another teenage son loved it and happily finished my husband’s drink as well as his own. I thought it was thirst quenching and refreshing.

I didn’t taste much mint in the drink, which seemed to be the case with my other testers, too. I definitely tasted the lime, perhaps even more than the orange juice. I don’t like carbonated water by itself, but it didn’t bother me at all in this drink. If you are worried about the sweetness, cutting the amount of sugar might help. Actually, I think I’ll try that and see how it goes.

I can picture myself settled in on my patio with a tall glass of orange lime fizz and a good book. What a great way to spend a warm spring or summer afternoon. How’s the weather where you live?

Movies for a Rainy Day

Part of living on our ranch is that when it rains, the dirt roads heading into town turn into a dangerous, muddy obstacle course. Sometimes we get stranded at home. Since I haven’t been able to go buy groceries to cook some tasty 1940s recipes, I decided to give you a list of movies the home from housewife might have gone to see on a rainy day. All of these are available to rent or buy, so you can watch them on a rainy day of your own.

I don’t want to abandon our January magazines, so I’m using a list of top movies from late 1944 that was in the January 1945 issue of Woman’s Day. The author, Raymond Knight, was particularly taken with a brand new actress “with the unusual appellation” of Lauren Bacall.

My Pal, Wolf

This movie starred Sharyn Moffett as a young girl who finds a dog that has escaped from its army training camp. The girl’s nanny calls the army to retrieve the dog, but it escapes gain. The little girl goes to Washington D.C. to see if she can have the dog live with her permanently. It was director Alfred L. Werker’s production debut. This movie is available to buy on Amazon. It’s the only movie on this list that I could not find available to rent.

Mrs. Parkington

Mrs. Parkington began as a serial in Cosmopolitan magazine and was later published as a novel by Louis Bromfield. It was also made into a radio program in 1946. Greer Garson starred as a woman who looks back over her life through flashbacks while dealing with family drama in the present. Greer Garson and Agnes Moorehead won awards for their performances. It also starred William Pidgeon, Gladys Cooper, Edward Arnold, and others. This movie is available to rent on multiple platforms.

To Have and Have Not

Based loosely on Ernest Hemingway’s 1937 novel, To Have and Have Not starred Humphrey Bogart, Walter Brennan, Dolores Moran, Hoagy Carmichael, and a brand new actress named Lauren Bacall. It’s a romance between a fisherman and an American in Martinique with a bit of French resistance activity thrown in. Both Hemingway and William Faulkner worked on the screenplay. Most people liked the movie, but critics claimed it was just a remake of Casablanca. Raymond Knight, the author of the Woman’s Day article, also mentioned similarities between the two movies. The film was released in October 1944, and Bogart and Bacall married in 1945. This is also available to rent on many platforms.

The Princess and the Pirate

Based on a story by Sy Bartlett, directed by David Butler, and starring Bob Hope and Virginia Mayo, The Princess and the Pirate is a comedy about a princess traveling in disguise to elope with the man she loves instead of the one she’s supposed to marry. Her ship is attacked by pirates, she is kidnapped, and adventures ensue. Bing Crosby makes an appearance. This was Bob Hope’s last movie with producer Samuel Goldwyn. You can rent The Princess and the Pirate, as well.

Laura

The American Film Institute named this movie as one of the 10 best mystery films of all time. Starring Gene Tierney, Dana Andres, Clifton Webb, Vincent Price, and Judith Anderson, Laura was based on the 1943 novel of the same name by Vera Caspary. The film is about a detective trying to solve a woman’s murder. This one is available for rent, too.

I’m going to watch some of these this weekend while I wait for the sun to dry up the roads. I’ll let you know how they are. In the meantime, if it’s cold where you are, you might enjoy some breakfast cocoa or a hot apple toddy.

What are your favorite early 1940s movies?

Spiced Apple Toddy

This is just a quick post today to help you through any chilly weather you might be experiencing. My kids call this “fancy cider”. Enjoy!

The current weather across much of the United States is cold and snowy right now. At my house, we have been battling rain and sand storms for the past week. I thought many of you might appreciate a warm treat, and this is one that you might already have the ingredients in your pantry. I’ve made many similar recipes, but this particular one is from the 1943 cookbook Double-Quick Cooking for Part-time Homemakers by Ida Bailey Allen.

Notes:

I’ve also used packaged cider mix combined with water, cloves, and lemon juice to make “fancy cider”. This works fine. It just isn’t as attractive as using the lemon slices. It’s a great option, though, when it’s cold outside and you don’t want to leave the house to buy a lemon.

Spiced Apple Toddy

Ingredients


4 c sweet cider or apple juice
1/2 tsp whole cloves
1 lemon

Directions


Heat cider, cloves, and half the lemon sliced to a boil. Strain into cups, and serve with thin slices of fresh lemon, each stuck with two cloves.

First Monday Menu: Hot Prem/Spam Sandwich and Orange Lily

World War II era magazine advertisers often used recipes featuring their products to entice housewives to buy their brands. I wanted to use a recipe from one of those magazine ads this month. I chose a hot sandwich made with canned meat that looked versatile, quick, and filling. Canned meats were popular because they were not rationed, they lasted a long time, and didn’t need refrigeration. They could also be eaten cold or hot, and they could be added to a variety of recipes. Since you can eat Spam and other meats straight out of the can, it was a handy food for soldiers, too.

This recipe is from a 1942 Prem ad. Prem is still being made, but I couldn’t find it anywhere near me. After some research, I found that Spam would make a good substitute. Does your grocery store have Prem? Have you tried it? I’m curious how it compares to Spam.

The other recipe in this menu is from the 1940 edition of The American Woman’s Cook Book. It is a drink that I think would be refreshing with any meal. Since this menu could also be a breakfast menu, I thought that the juice was a nice option.

Hot Prem/Spam Sandwich

2 eggs

2 tbsp milk

2 tbsp chopped celery

1/2 tbsp green pepper

1/4 tbsp grated onion

salt

pepper

canned meat like Prem or Spam

toast

Beat two eggs slightly. Add milk, celery, green pepper, and onion. Add salt and pepper. Scramble over low heat, stirring constantly. Pan fry 2 slices of Spam or Prem. Serve on slices of toast. Makes 1 sandwich.

Note: This recipe truly only makes one sandwich. It’s easy to increase amounts to make enough for more.

Orange Lily

1/2 cup white grape juice

2 tbsp orange juice

1 tsp sugar

Fill glass half full of shaved ice. Add juices and sugar. Fill with chilled water. The cookbook suggests serving with two straws poked through a thin slice of orange.

Results

I think a lot of people are a bit apprehensive about eating Spam. It honestly is not bad at all. This sandwich was very similar to eating eggs on toast with some sausage or bacon. I added hashbrowns as a side. The meal was very filling. This is a nice choice for breakfast or a quick lunch.

I can definitely see the appeal of canned meats to the home front housewife. When ration points were running low, canned meats could help stretch what a housewife had and could add flavor to meals when food supplies were limited. This meal is a good option for people in a hurry or on a budget, as well. It’s hearty and quick to get on the table.

The Orange Lily drink was delicious. I did have to tweak the recipe a bit for my family’s tastes, though. When you add water and ice, the drink becomes more water than juice. I made a big batch of it in a pitcher and didn’t add any water. We just added ice in the individual glasses and that made it perfect for us. I also found that ice cubes worked better than shaved ice. The shaved ice we tried melted immediately. I also recommend stirring the mixture occasionally so the sugar doesn’t gather at the bottom of your glass or pitcher.

Let me know if you try either of these recipes. Have a great week!

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Breakfast Cocoa

One of my favorite things to do this time of year is sit in front of a roaring fire and sip a cup of hot chocolate. I found a few cocoa recipes in my collection, and I thought I’d test one for you. I’m also including a couple of variations that you can try at home. Let me know if you do.

Breakfast Cocoa

This recipe comes from Ruth Wakefield’s Toll House Tried and True Recipes. I have the 1941 edition. You can read more about this cookbook here.

Though not quite as quick as opening a package of hot cocoa and stirring it into milk or water, this recipe is an easy way to whip up a homemade batch of hot cocoa in a hurry. The recipe says it will serve six, but we found we needed to pour small servings. I’d double this if you have several people who would enjoy a mug of this breakfast cocoa.

3 tbsp cocoa

4 tbsp sugar

1/2 c. boiling water

1 1/2 c. boiling water

2 c. hot milk

dash of salt

Mix the cocoa, sugar, and 1/2 c. boiling water to make a smooth paste. Then add 1 1/2 c. boiling water and boil for 3 minutes. Add the salt and 2 c. hot milk. Beat with a Dover egg beater to prevent scum from forming. Serve.

Results

This makes a smooth cocoa drink. It isn’t overly sweet, but it isn’t bitter either. I wish I had doubled the recipe because everyone wanted a second serving.

The first part of the recipe suggests that the consistancey should be more of a paste. Mine was a bit more runny than that, but it still worked well.

The recipe called for using a Dover egg beater to beat the cocoa mixture. I don’t have one so I mixed it well. I like recipes that suggest vintage or vintage-style tools to add to my collection. I try to keep the recipes as close as possible to the originals, but sometimes I need to modernize it a bit to include tools and gadgets that we are more likely to have on hand in today’s kitchens.

South American Chocolate

This is from the same cookbook as the above, but adds coffee to the mix.

7 oz bar Nestle’s Semi-sweet chocolate bar

1 c. strong hot coffee

6 c. scalded milk

Melt the chocolate bar over hot water. Add the coffee slowly. Boil 1 minute. Add to the scalded milk. Beat until thick froth forms on top and then leave it over the water for 10 minutes. You can serve it hot with whipped cream, sweetened and flavored, or you can pour it into tall glasses with ice to enjoy cold. Serves 8.

Hot Chocolate

This recipe is from the 1944 edition of The Good Housekeeping Cook Book. It’s interesting to note that this cookbook also includes a recipe for basic hot cocoa that mentions packaged ready-to-serve cocoa.

2 squares (2 oz) unsweetened chocolate, cut in pieces

1 c. water

speck salt

3 tbsp granulated sugar (1/2 c. corn syrup may be substituted)

3 c. bottled milk OR 1 1/2 c. evaporated milk and 1 1/2 c. water

Place the chocolate and the water in the top of a double boiler over the direct heat and cook while stirring until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Add the salt and sugar. Boil 4 min., stirring constantly. Place over hot water, add milk gradually while stirring constantly, and heat. Beat with an egg beater until light and frothy, then serve. This recipe suggests serving with a marshmallow or whipped cream. Serves 6.

Happy New Year!