Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Farm House Recipes

In celebration of Thanksgiving, here are a few historic recipes that originally appeared in the Vallejo Evening Chronicle in 1881, under the heading “Farm House Recipes.”

Minced Fowl

Take the remains of a cold roast fowl and cut off the white meat, which mince finely without any skin or bone; but put the skin and bone into a stew pan, with an onion, a blade of mace, and a handful of sweet herb tied up. Add nearly a pint of water. Let it stew for an hour, and then strain and pour off the gravy, putting in a teaspoonful of Worcestershire sauce. Take two hard-boiled eggs and chop them small, mix them with the fowl, and salt, pepper, and mace, according to taste; put in the gravy, also half a teaspoon of lemon juice, two tablespoonfuls of flour, made into a smooth paste with a little cold water, and let the whole just boil. Serve with snippets of toasted bread. Some persons prefer cayenne to other pepper.

Stamscott Buns

Buns are easily made, and are excellent when this recipe is followed: Take one cup of yeast, one cup of sugar, one of butter, three cups of sweet milk: mix at night, omitting the butter and sugar; make a very soft sponge, let it stand till morning and then add the butter and a pinch of soda and the sugar; let it rise again, until it is very light, then knead lightly and put into tins. When light enough bake in a moderate oven till the top is dark brown; while hot rub over the top with a little bit of butter, this makes the crust tender and smooth. If you choose you can add English currants, and when brought to the table warm they are said to resemble the wonderful tea cakes of Mrs. Southey, which Shelly, having once tasted them, wished his wife to serve for supper ever after.

Manchester Pudding

Line a pie-dish with a good short crust, and then a layer of jam; take a teacupful of warm milk, and mix with three ounces bread crumbs, three ounces of butter, three ounces of white sugar, the rind and juice of a small lemon, the yokes of three and the white of one egg. Stir all three together until it becomes a kind of custard, then pour the mixture into the pie-dish, and bake one hour and a quarter; serve very hot with the whites of two eggs whipped up on the top.

Monday, November 17, 2008

A Winter Sunset in Vallejo

This beautiful postcard of a winter sunset was published c. 1900- 1910. The green hills in the background are the southern tip of Mare Island, site of the Naval Ammunition Depot. On the far left are the buildings of the Sperry Flour Mill. This photo provides one of the clearest views of the low, swampy bay that once separated Vallejo and South Vallejo. A thin black line through the water may be the beginnings of the dike that was built to enclose this inlet. The bay originally reached inland to the area known today as Lake Dalwigk. When the dike was completed around 1915, the bay was drained, then filled to create new usable land for the city.