1884 The Cooking Club

by Rena

Pray what do they do at the club?
Tis ever the question they ask; But to answer it fully, I fear, Were rather a serious task; And yet, if you’ll listen to me, And pardon my rhyming with “grub,” I’ll venture a bit of a song To tell what they do at the club.

Imprimis, I’ll tell you they cook.
Oh, thoughtful and careful the eyes
That study the recipe book.
With glances so eager and wise!
Or they listen, as if In a trance,
To lectures and hints and the rules
From their sisters, their cousins and aunts
Who have learned in experience schools.

Then they measure, they pound and they sift,
They bake and they stew and they fry;
They roast and they stir and they lift,
They mold and they shake and they try–
Till from cellars and pantries and fire,
From kitchens and ovens and shelves
Come dainties I’m sure you’d admire.
And say they were made by the elves.

With a flutter of fans and of lace,
They meet for their “six o’clock tea”
With a smile of content on each face
And appetites startling to see.
They have jellies that melt like a dream
And patties and salads and meat
And coffee and biscuit and cream
And pickles and “sweets for the sweet.”

Then the cooks all laughingly chat.
As the moments so merrily fly.
Not forgetting their duty and-—that
Is to taste every dish passing by.
And they talk upon frivolous fun,
Or on subjects as grave as the “Hub,”
And they eat and they eat and they eat
And that’s what they do at the club.

— from Cook book of the Young Ladies Cooking Club, Monroe, Michigan,

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