by Rena

Getting ready of Thanksgiving.

Taffy Pulling

by Rena

We saw the photo at masterfile for taffy pulling in the 1940s. Question. Have these masterfiles been taken recently and staged to look like the ’40s ’50s, and 60s, or are they historic? They may be historic, but they’re such hams it made me wonder. I like the pictures.

Dr. Miles Candy Book.Well. Here are some taffy-pulling pictures that are from an earlier time–or verified from an earlier time. The picture, left, is from a cooking booklet sometime between 1911 and 1914.

c. 1919: Lydia PinkhamSweets
This Sweet heart picture, above, does not come with a date. It is from Lydia Pinkham’s advertising booklet. All the illustrations in her booklets are so cute. Lydia gave us these instructions:

  • In handling or pulling all boiled candies the hands should be well buttered to prevent the mixture sticking to them.
  • If the pot in which candy is boiled is buttered for an inch or two down, the liquid will not boil over.
  • Flavors are more delicate when not boiled in candy but added afterward.
  • Use fresh cold water for each trial of candy; preferably ice-water.


how to cook husbands. Recipes for a successful marriage.“They are really delicious—when properly treated.”

A while ago I came across a newspaper clipping—a recipe written by a Baltimore lady—that had long lain dormant in my desk. It ran as follows:

“A great many husbands are spoiled by mismanagement. Some women go about it as if their husbands were bladders, and blow them up; others keep them constantly in hot water; others let them freeze, by their carelessness and indifference. Some keep them in a stew, by irritating ways and words; others roast them; some keep them in pickle all their lives. Now it is not to be supposed that any husband will be good, managed in this way—turnips wouldn’t; onions wouldn’t; cabbage-heads wouldn’t, and husbands won’t; but they are really delicious when properly treated.

Read full article—>

1930s-1950s, looking mostly to efficiency:

Chafing Dish

by Rena

Cooking with a chafing dish is ancient, but was popular in America, beginning c. 1880s — considered fashionable on dining tables, and a necessity in dorm rooms. First heated with a fueled wick, they became electrified around the turn-of-the-century. Here is a postal stamp depicting a fashionable c. 1930s couple using an electric chafing dish, now that electricity was available in more homes.

Kitchen Theater

by Rena

New version: Between the Soup and the Savoury with a Twist….