Last week, I ordered the Modern Prisilla Cook Book, publication date of 1924. It is the first of two that Modern Priscilla made and Jen’s mom lent me hers. She had the 1929 version. I went looking for one or the other and found the 1924 version for less than 20 dollars. It arrived today. I was terribly excited.
One problem. It is, quite obviously old – even though in excellent shape, and originally covered with plain brown paper wrapping. At this point in this books’ life, the brown paper wrapping was stuck to the book.
On the back, I had already used my fingernails to get off (gently) quite a bit of the brown paper. It was covering the entire back. I kept working at it and thinking that a razor blade would destroy the book. However, I finally got curious and got a razor blade. I made one small mistake; however, this is how it looks, now.
Much better. On further perusal, the recipes inside are not exactly the same as the ones in the 1929 version. In fact, the Madeline recipe is missing from the 1924 version! And, we do love our Madeline’s!
I was scanning through the first few pages, something I couldn’t do with Jen’s mom’s book (it was old as well and falling apart). It had some pretty cool information in the front pages.
Page 3 says, “Accurate Measurements: The Priscilla Cook Book is an authority based on actual tests, for such accurate culinary information as the homemaker of today requires, and insists upon: Accurate measurements. The Temperature at which the dish should be cooked. The length of the cooking period.”
It continues, “Advantages of Accuracy: Money Saving. – “Bad Luck” caused more waste in the old-fashioned kitchen than any other one cause. Certainly in place of guessing eliminates failures. Time Saving. – If we know just how long a dish should be cooked, and at what temperature the oven should be held, the time we used to spend hovering near the stove to “see how it is coming along” is saved for something more profitable. Mental Relief. – A feeling of confidence takes considerable strain from a busy woman’s mind.”
(I tried to type everything exactly. The only difference between mine and the original is spacing.)
Certainly a book like this could offer more assistance in the kitchen than a modern cookbook that boasts the best, fanciest recipes. I need to find time to sit and just read all the information they freely gave back in the day.
In the meantime, I’m going hunting for the 1929 version to add to my collection. I can’t afford it, but occasionally adding a book to my collection won’t hurt anything.
Thank you for listening,