Wednesday, August 15, 2007


Frequent readers of this blog have probably figured out that I am a food-slut. And consequently have a considerable number of books about food.

It's a consuming passion.

This past weekend, Savage Kitten picked up two second-hand cookbooks. One of which consists mainly of odd health-food recipes from the nineteen thirties, one of which is much more recent.

The second book is also decidedly more interesting.

Entitled "Golden Gate Gourmet - volume II" (copyright 1962), it consists of three parts - Favorite Selections of Bay Area Hostesses (pages 31 through 77), Dining With Our Consulates (pages 80 through 111), and From The Chefs of Restaurants Who Help Distinguish Our City (pages 113 through 171).

Yes, it contains, praedictably, a horrifying recipe for sweet and sour pork. As well as some odd and dated things with curry powder.

But the most interesting recipe, which I shall reproduce below, is a real period piece, reflecting a time in our society when such dishes were new, interesting, exiting, and smiled upon as inventive and, dare I say it, uppercrustian. It was a unique time. A far less judgmental time.


1 cup hot water
1 package orange flavor gelatin
½ teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 tablespoon butter
½ teaspoon grated lemon rind
1 lb. can whole, small sweet potatoes
14 ounce can pineapple chunks
2 4 ounce cans Vienna sausage

Combine the water, gelatin, salt, brown sugar in a 10" skillet and stir until the gelatin is dissolved. Add the butter and lemon rind. Bring the mixture to a full boil, stirring constantly. Turn heat to low and add the sweet potatoes. Cook about 10 minutes, basting frequently. Drain the syrup from the pineapple chunks and put chunks into skillet. Drain the liquid from the sausages and add to the potatoes and pineapple. Cook about 10 minutes longer, or until sauce is thick and glossy. Serves 3.

[The contributor of this recipe was Mrs. Ambrose Diehl, who had been Director of the Reception Center, U.S. Department of State - a 24 hour a day, 7 days a week job. She was also involved with the National Red Cross and aid to Korea.]

I imagine that one could also make a kosher version of this dish. Or a vegetarian version. But would one want to?

One recipe in the book does intrigue me, as it reflects a bygone era about which I have read much. Lady Curzon soup, named after the wife of the Viceroy of India, George Nathaniel Curzon, served 1899 to 1905 (in office, that is - the soup was served for decades afterwards, especially aboard transatlantic liners).


1 can clear turtle soup
4 tablespoons sweet cream
2 egg yolks
½ to 1 teaspoon curry powder
1 tablespoon butter
½ cup dry sherry
2 teaspoons whipped cream

Heat the soup in a saucepan, but be careful not to let it boil. Beat the egg yolks with the cream until thoroughly mixed. Stir this mixture into the turtle soup and let it warm. After you have done so, melt the butter in a pan and sauté the curry powder in it very lightly. Add a little of the soup to make it liquid. Let it simmer a minute and mix it back into the main soup. Add sherry just before serving. After you have poured it into bouillon cups, top it with whipped cream and pinch of curry powder.

[Contributed by Mrs. David Dibble of San Francisco, the former Veronika Blumenthal.]

I do not intend to hurry over to my provisioners to purchase a one pound can of whole small sweet potatoes. Nor even amble for that purpose. Ever.
But if he has one or two cans of clear turtle soup lying around, I may purchase them - just the ticket for the foggy San Francisco climate.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hmmm. Gelatin AND vienna sausage? Together?
And you didn't WIN the JBloggers food award?
Tsk. Tsk. Tsk.

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