Contributed Recipes, like so many older, locally produced cookbooks, offers readers much more than just recipes. There’s all that rich cultural (and commercial) history, too, such as the admonishment to “Use F. W. Potter & Co.’s Gilt Edge Flour for Pastry” that runs across the footer of each page, and the back-cover description of Shredded Wheat’s wholesomeness and vast array of uses. This little book includes just over 200 recipes, not all of them edible (savor the Parker House rolls and sugar cookies, but resist tasting the liniment (external use only).
The last of the ten categories, or chapters, has been reserved for “Miscellaneous,” a curious stew that includes various ointments as well as recipes “To Remove Mildew,” “To Make Tough Beef Tender,” and for scalloped potatoes, ice cream, fudge, and other candies. The recipes, each of which credits its contributor, are straight to the point and use a minimum of words, but most leave baking directions (oven temperature, time) to the discretion of the reader—surely a glaring omission to modern cooks. A brief index at the back is followed by several pages of ads for the cookbook’s local sponsors.
This work, originally published in 1915, is reprinted by Milne Library at the State University of New York College at Geneseo as part of the Genesee Valley Historical Reprints series. The Genesee Valley Historical Collection is Milne Library’s largest and most accessible collection of local history materials. Its geographical scope covers the eight counties surrounding the Genesee River in New York State: Allegany, Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Ontario, Orleans, Steuben and Wyoming. For more information, see: http://go.geneseo.edu/gvhr.
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