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Michael Sheldon
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Lived in Gilbert AZ
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Michael Sheldon

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Things you find in old books.
This paper was used to write a recipe on, and kept in a very old cookbook. While there is no date on it, given the description of using an automobile as a seasonal thing, I suspect this was printed prior to 1930. The cookbook dates from 1887.
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Michael Sheldon

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Had a couple plums on hand that had to be used before spoiling, and a search turned up this recipe by +Kay Little 
Warning! You will very likely eat more than you should. This is pretty amazing, and should work for most stone-fruit. It was also very easy to make.
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Looks really good.
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Michael Sheldon

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Sometimes, the jewels in an old cookbook are the things written by the previous owners.
Old cookbooks had blank pages at the end or middle, for writing your own recipes. In my copy of Miss Parloa's New Cookbook (1882) was this handwritten recipe for Pepper Hash. For those not from the Amish country, Pepper Hash is another name for cole slaw. Today, pepper hash really tends to refer to one specific style, but it was apparently not always true. Today's pepper hash is a mixture of finely grated cabbage and carrots in vinegar, generally served in very small cups.
The recipe here bears a striking similarity to one by Chef Robert Irvine http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/robert-irvine/cole-slaw-recipe0.html So similar in fact, that I used his recipe to flesh out the missing measurements of the older recipe.

I substituted sour cream for the cream. This very likely makes no difference at all, since mixing vinegar and cream is going to result in sour cream anyway. I just happened to have the sour cream on hand.

Tthis is half the size of the original recipe:

1/2 Cabbage
2 Bell Peppers, red or green
2 Tablespoons Sugar
1 Cup Sour Cream or Cream
1/4 Cup White Wine Vinegar
1 Teaspoon Celery Seed
Salt and Pepper to taste

Cut the cabbage into wedges, core, and slice very fine by hand or in a food processor. Core and clean the peppers, then slice very fine. Put both into a large bowl.
Mix sugar, cream, vinegar, celery seed salt and pepper, then add to the cabbage and bell peppers, toss, then seal in a container. This should rest in the refrigerator at least a few hours, overnight is best. It will keep in the refrigerator for several days.
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Michael Sheldon

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The very first computer I learned to program on was a Commodore PET, and the Super PET.
Not sure if I'd get this phone, but kinda cool to see the name again. 
The new Commodore Pet smartphone is arriving in Europe this week.
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Mine was a Vic 20, followed  by an Amiga 1000
Yes, kinda cool to see the name again
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Michael Sheldon

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Much older than most things I do, this came from a Roman cookbook,

White Mice
Halve hard boiled eggs, use sliced almonds for ears, cloves for eyes, chives for tails.

They're adorable, and make a nice center piece for a lunch or salad course.

One common thing about meals up until the early 20th century, it was often as much about presentation as it was about taste. 
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Michael Sheldon

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Soft Gingerbread

This recipe is adapted from Miss Parloa's New Cook Book and Marketing Guide (1908). I stayed as close as I could to the original, substituting baking powder for the saleratus (an early version of baking powder). Like the original owner of the book, I cut the recipe to one third.

2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 cup molasses
1/3 cup cream (milk or buttermilk should also work)
1/3 cup butter, room temperature
1 egg, separated

Preheat oven to 350F, and grease an 8x8 or 9x9 baking pan.

Mix flour, baking powder and ginger thoroughly in a large bowl and set aside.
In another bowl, beat egg yolk into the butter until well mixed and creamy. (Egg yolks are emulsifiers, they help oils stay mixed in liquids.) Next, whisk in the molasses, then egg white, then cream.
Mix the wet ingredients into the dry, mixing only enough to wet it all. Pour the batter into the baking pan, then bake for 35-40 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.
Cool in the pan for 8-10 minutes then turn out onto a cooling rack.

Comments :
This is not as sweet as modern recipes. Most modern recipes add another 1/2 cup of sugar. Personally, I prefer it this way. It is also not as spicy as modern recipes, which would add a teaspoon of cinnamon.

I might consider adding a half teaspoon of salt.

As a stand alone dessert, I would consider adding the cinnamon and brown sugar, but as written, it is a great accompaniment to coffee or tea. At first, my opinion was that it might be a little bland, but after realizing that I'd scarfed three pieces, I figure it's just fine. Might be excellent toasted with a little butter. Would be outstanding with lemon curd.

If you look at the original recipe, you notice the complete lack of instructions. This is pretty typical. These books assumed the reader was already familiar with general cooking techniques, and would only explain things that were out of the ordinary. 
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Michael Sheldon

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My favorite quote for today is from a 19th century cookbook: "...well seasoned with pepper, salt, parsley and a suspicion of onion."

hmmm, how suspicious should I be of the onion?
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Avoid involvement, it can only lead to tears.
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Michael Sheldon

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Totally forgot until tonight why it's a bad idea to make blackened fish in a normal household kitchen. Smoke from burning hot pepper is not pleasant to breathe. This is a job best done outside or under a high powered hood.
Ah well, pretty sure in a couple years I'll forget and try it again.

Was darned tasty though. 
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Michael Sheldon

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Nice job, USPS. Fortunately, the sender padded the heck out of the contents.
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Michael Sheldon

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Sometimes, the jewels in an old cookbook are the things written by the previous owners.
Old cookbooks had blank pages at the end or middle, for writing your own recipes. In my copy of Miss Parloa's New Cookbook (1882) was this handwritten recipe for Pepper Hash. For those not from the Amish country, Pepper Hash is another name for cole slaw. Today, pepper hash really tends to refer to one specific style, but it was apparently not always true. Today's pepper hash is a mixture of finely grated cabbage and carrots in vinegar, generally served in very small cups.
The recipe here bears a striking similarity to one by Chef Robert Irvine http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/robert-irvine/cole-slaw-recipe0.html So similar in fact, that I used his recipe to flesh out the missing measurements of the older recipe.

I substituted sour cream for the cream. This very likely makes no difference at all, since mixing vinegar and cream is going to result in sour cream anyway. I just happened to have the sour cream on hand.

Tthis is half the size of the original recipe:

1/2 Cabbage
2 Bell Peppers, red or green
2 Tablespoons Sugar
1 Cup Sour Cream or Cream
1/4 Cup White Wine Vinegar
1 Teaspoon Celery Seed
Salt and Pepper to taste

Cut the cabbage into wedges, core, and slice very fine by hand or in a food processor. Core and clean the peppers, then slice very fine. Put both into a large bowl.
Mix sugar, cream, vinegar, celery seed salt and pepper, then add to the cabbage and bell peppers, toss, then seal in a container. This should rest in the refrigerator at least a few hours, overnight is best. It will keep in the refrigerator for several days.
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Michael Sheldon

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This is one of the big reasons I prefer working for privately held companies vs. public. 
There is growing pressure on public companies to act short-term and distribute their profits to shareholders instead of funding jobs, research, and investments. It is time for the American people to rethink these destructive trends.
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Michael Sheldon

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Soft Gingerbread

This recipe is adapted from Miss Parloa's New Cook Book and Marketing Guide (1908). I stayed as close as I could to the original, substituting baking powder for the saleratus (an early version of baking powder). Like the original owner of the book, I cut the recipe to one third.

2 cups flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 cup molasses
1/3 cup cream (milk or buttermilk should also work)
1/3 cup butter, room temperature
1 egg, separated

Preheat oven to 350F, and grease an 8x8 or 9x9 baking pan.

Mix flour, baking powder and ginger thoroughly in a large bowl and set aside.
In another bowl, beat egg yolk into the butter until well mixed and creamy. (Egg yolks are emulsifiers, they help oils stay mixed in liquids.) Next, whisk in the molasses, then egg white, then cream.
Mix the wet ingredients into the dry, mixing only enough to wet it all. Pour the batter into the baking pan, then bake for 35-40 minutes, until a toothpick comes out clean.
Cool in the pan for 8-10 minutes then turn out onto a cooling rack.

Comments :
This is not as sweet as modern recipes. Most modern recipes add another 1/2 cup of sugar. Personally, I prefer it this way. It is also not as spicy as modern recipes, which would add a teaspoon of cinnamon.

I might consider adding a half teaspoon of salt.

As a stand alone dessert, I would consider adding the cinnamon and brown sugar, but as written, it is a great accompaniment to coffee or tea. At first, my opinion was that it might be a little bland, but after realizing that I'd scarfed three pieces, I figure it's just fine. Might be excellent toasted with a little butter. Would be outstanding with lemon curd.

If you look at the original recipe, you notice the complete lack of instructions. This is pretty typical. These books assumed the reader was already familiar with general cooking techniques, and would only explain things that were out of the ordinary. 
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Thank you for sharing this. Very interesting. 
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Gilbert AZ - Pensacola FL - Danville PA - Laurel MD - Reading PA - San Diego CA - Charleston SC - Glen Ellyn IL - Yuma, AZ
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What is this thing I hear of, specialization?
Introduction
I am the stereotypical jack of all trades:
- Software engineer/codemonkey, I write DNS software
- Actor/historical re-creationist, I perform at renaissance faires promoting greyhound adoption
- Leatherworker, I make sighthound collars and other miscellaneous things.
- Woodworker, I make all of the furniture, boxes, etc for Greyhounds of Fairhaven
- Businessman, I am part owner of Carpe Canem, a store selling Greyhound-related goods. And, I am an officer of Greyhounds of Fairhaven, a 501c(3) charity promoting adoption of retired racing Greyhounds.
- Fewterer, a keeper of Greyhounds
- Cook, I'm the camp cook for Greyhounds of Fairhaven
- Brewer, ale, mead and their wonderful love-child, braggot
- Tailor, I make all of my own costumes
- Musician, I play Irish flute and pennywhistles.

In the past, I have also been a military medic, police officer, IT manager and even fruit-picker.
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Chile Philly rocks. Best sandwich bread anywhere.
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