Thursday, October 02, 2008

My kind of history

History wasn't one of my favorite subjects in school; I think it is one of those things you develop a greater appreciation for as you get older (although I'm still not into watching The History Channel). Food history, however, is really interesting to me. As much as I like trying new recipes, I'm also interested in learning about the history of food and meals. Some historical foods suit me better than others (for example, I love heirloom tomatoes but I can't get very excited about eating liver).

In addition to heirloom tomatoes, another thing I love is cookbooks. This summer, just before our anniversary, Ken and I went to an estate sale near our home. I think he was interested in a pressure washer, but I was drawn to the boxes of old cookbooks. I started looking through some of them while they were selling items I wasn't interested in . . . and found a few I thought were really cool. However, it was a really hot day and I had a lot of things on my weekend to-do list . . . so Ken took me home (empty handed) and he returned to the sale. He stayed there for quite a while, so I thought he would buy the pressure washer - but instead, he came home with 2 boxes of old cookbooks! He waited around for them to sell long after the pressure washer had sold. In the hot, humid August weather. Isn't he nice?

The boxes were filled with lots of community cookbooks (from churches, daycares, 4-H clubs, flower societies, etc.), plus a few hardcover books. Here are two of my favorites - the Culinary Arts Institute's Encyclopedic Cookbook and the White House Cookbook.

The White House Cookbook is a reprint of the original 1887 Edition - the recipes are in a different format than recipes we see today. They don't list the ingredients; ingredients are incorporated into the directions instead. Both cookbooks also have monthly menu plans (you can tell I intended to post this in September!):

(Culinary Arts Cookbok's September Dinner Menus)

(The White House Cookbook's September menus)


Life is Wonderful said...

WOW! I love going to just never know what you can find. AND...your hubby sounds sooo sweet!

Megan said...

Awh...Ken has a romantic side! Who woulda thunk it? Anyways, I think its great you have those cookbooks! They're like antiques in the cooking world and you can't find them anywhere. I can't wait to see what recipes you post out of them.