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Saturday, August 18, 2007

"Our Own Book"

by Kennedy Hull
©2007 All rights reserved by the author

I found a great old book called “Our Own Book” published by the Elmira (New York) Weekly Gazette & Free Press in 1888. It is falling apart and in decrepit shape, but it has much good stuff in it.

Such as:

Soup for an Invalid - Cut in small pieces 1 lb. of beef or mutton, or a part of both; boil it gently in 2 quarts of water; take off the scum, and when reduced to a pint, strain it. Season it with a little salt, and take a teacupful at a time.

Beef Tongue - Corned or smoked - Soak the tongue twenty-four hours before boiling. It will require from three to four hours [of boiling], according to size. The skin should always be removed as soon as it is taken from the pot. An economical method is to lay the tongue, as soon as the skin is removed, in a jar, coiled up, with the tip outside the root, and a weight upon it. When it is cold, loosen the sides with a knife and t urn it out. The slices being cut horizontally all the round, the fat and lean will go together.

Boiled Bullock’s Head - This as a good dish for a large family. Place the head in salt water for six hours, to cleanse it; then wash and remove the palates, and place them again in salt and water; put the head in a saucepan, with sufficient water to cover; boil for five hours, adding tow carrots, two turnips, and two onions, cut small; when done remove the head from the soup, and remove the bone from the meat; serve soup and meat in tureen; the palates when white, boiled until tender, then pressed until cold, make it a delicious relish for lunch or supper. This is one of a few recipes for substantial dishes, suitable for persons of small means.

Cottage Pie - In the bottom of the pie dish put a good layer of nicely minced mutton or beef, season to taste, add an onion chopped fine, cover with mashed potatoes, and bake in a sharp oven half an hour, or until the potatoes are well browned.

Prairie Chickens - Skin the chickens, which makes them sweeter; cut them open on the back and through the breast. Fry them in batter, with salt and pepper to the taste. Cook them to a nice brown.

Cure for the Itch
Take half a pound hog’s lard, four ounces spirits turpentine, two ounces flour sulphur, and mix them together cold. Apply to the ankles, knees, wrists, and elbows, and rub it in the palms of the hands, if there be any raw spots. Apply a little three nights when going to bed.

A Certain Cure for a Common Cold
Boil a common-sized turnip, put it into a saucer, and pour upon it half a cup of molasses, and let it stand fifteen minutes; then turn off the syrup, at the same time squeezing the turnip so as to express its fluid. The syrup to be drank warm on going to bed.

For a Hectic Cough
Take three yolks of hen’s eggs, three teaspoonfuls of honey, and one of tar; beat well together; add one gill of wine. Take a teaspoonful three times a day before eating.


Our Own Book. Elmira, New York: (Elmira) Weekly Gazette & Free Press, 1888.

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