Sunday, May 22, 2016

Historical Food Fortnightly Challenge #9 - Mock Foods

9.  Mock Foods (April 22 - May 5)  Historic cookbooks are full of recipes meant to imitate rare, expensive or impractical ingredients.  It's your turn to help your food pretend it's something that it isn't!

The United States had not officially entered World War I at the time of the 1916 publication of the cookbook I'm using for the Historical Food Fortnightly 2016 Challenges.  War has always impacted the availability and use of ingredients, but stretching a budget and feeding large families is universal both worldwide and in all eras.

Twenty Lessons in Domestic Science by Marian Cole Fisher,  is a condensed home study course copyright 1916.  The Introduction begins with a section on Marketing (Family Budget).  "One essential to proper marketing is a family budget.  The budget for food must be subdivided to establish just how much money can be expended for various provisions.  In this respect the value of the knowledge of a balanced ration is apparent.  Without such knowledge the dispenser of the budget is like a ship without a rudder."  The Lessons then continue with learning about The Function and Composition of Foods.  Ultimately, the course and recipes are designed for proper nutrition within an appropriate budget.

Mock foods and food substitutes are covered in general in the book but one recipe made complete sense to me when looking for a way to stretch a budget and use ingredients that might otherwise go to waste.  Marian's  Bread Crumb Griddle Cakes.  Is this the author Marian?  While I still haven't been able to uncover who Marian Cole Fisher was, I believe is might be the same Marian, and I believe this recipe is an ingenious way to use some old bread.  Bread crumbs in a pancake batter?  Should be interesting!

Easy ingredients!

Eggs beaten with my newest kitchen acquisition - an OXO hand beater.  I love this little tool!

Add all ingredients except the bread crumbs.

I have Panko bread crumbs always on hand in my cupboard.  They have a wonderful nutty flavor because they are toasted twice.


A nice smooth batter.

Since the shortening is already in the batter the griddle is pre-heated and ready for the first griddle cakes.

They brown beautifully, don't stick to the pan, and rise to a fabulous height!

A couple more griddle cakes....

... some butter, strawberries, blueberries, and breakfast is served!


Enough photos!  Someone is ready to eat!

Of course I was thinking that the bread crumbs would create a crunchy texture in the griddle cakes, but they were smooth and tasty.  They were different than a normal pancake batter in that they were heavier, heartier, and very satisfying.  Two pancakes were filling for me and four for hubby kept us going all morning.  Delicious!


Thursday, May 19, 2016

Historical Food Fortnightly Challenge #10 - Breakfast Foods

10.  Breakfast Foods (May 6 - May 19)  It's simple - make a breakfast dish.  Get creative, but make sure to provide our documentation for its place at the breakfast table!
Still using my 100-year-old Twenty Lessons in Domestic Science by Marian Cole Fisher, I find in Lesson Number Five - Proteins, a most unusual recipe for a Puff Omelet.
Never having heard of whipping egg whites for an omelet this is a must-try recipe!
Easy ingredients.

No parsley in the herb bed, but there are some lovely chives.

The eggs are separated and the yolks beaten until stiff and lemon colored.  I have a beautiful new OXO manual rotary beater and it seriously beats my electric mixer.

The egg whites are whipped until very stiff which with the hand beater takes just a minute.

Warm water and salt and pepper added to the yolks and blended.

And lastly the whipped egg whites added to the yolk mixture and folded to blend.

The butter has melted in the skillet over a medium-low heat.

The egg mixture is added to the pan and allowed to cook until the sides are set up well.

Then the pan is put under the broiler for just minutes until the center is cooked through.

The omelet lifts easily from the pan to fold but I think I cooked it just a bit too long and the underneath breaks before the omelet folds.  So I just turn it over onto a plate and act like that is exactly what I wanted to happen.  (Hubby is sitting there waiting for breakfast already.)

A sprinkling of fresh chives and we are ready to eat!

We grilled pork chops yesterday and I think the leftovers are perfect for a hearty breakfast.  The 4 eggs could easily have fed 4 people with the volume created with the egg beating and whipping.  So light and fluffy and delicious!