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Gram’s Cookbook – Page 11 part 1

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Today is a special day in this cookbook series of mine.  Take a look at the picture of the cookbook – who signed under the first 3 recipes?

“Mother.”  GRAM’s mother – my Great great grandmother!  I have recipes that she loved enough to put into the wedding cookbook of her daughter, my beloved Gram… In her own handwriting, her own spin on the recipe.   The only bit of her that I have (other than a smidging of DNA).

I know very little about my Great great grandmother… I know that she was a twin and that’s about it.  One of the twin’s names was Emma Louise and the other’s was Louise Emma.  That was always funny to me for some reason.   But, I don’t know who was who.  🙂

And, I know that these are very low resolution (my mom took a picture out of a scrapbook and I had to crop down from there to get pictures separated) but… is Gram’s mother possibly in this picture?  It’s a picture of Gram’s wedding!

And this is the happy couple!  (Or, not so much, they ended up divorcing in the early 40’s – scandalous to be sure!)   Hopefully, I’ll get a chance to take better pictures of these pictures at some point in the future…

OK, back to the recipes.  Below are the recipes as written in the cookbook:

Cornmeal Biscuits

1 c. white flour

1 c. cornmeal

2 T. shortening

3/4 t. salt

3/4 c. scalded milk

4 t. baking powder

Save 1/4 c. flour for board.

Pour milk over corn meal, add shortening and salt.  When cold, add flour and powder.  Roll lightly – cut – bake in greased pan – hot oven 12 – 20 minutes.

Rice Muffins

1 c. milk

1/2 c. corn meal

1 T shortening

2 T. sugar or corn syrup

1/2 c. cooked rice

1/3 c. flour

1/2 t. salt

3 t. baking powder

1 egg

Scald milk and pour over meal – add shortening and sugar.  Cool – add rice – flour, salt and powder – add beaten egg.  Beat well.  Bake in greased muffin pans in moderate oven 20 minutes.

Sweet Bread

1 pint of yeast

1 pint of milk – scalded & cooled

1 c. sugar (Brown & white)

1 c. raisins

1 c. lard & butter

1 egg

Little salt – nutmeg – cinnamon.  Let raise – when light add raisins & flour enough to handle.  Soften the butter.  Put in pans – raise – Bake in slow oven 30 minutes.


Of her recipes, I made the first two – the Cornmeal Biscuits and the Rice Muffins.  As we don’t do milk here, I subbed out vanilla almond milk for cows milk and coconut oil (a solid generally) for the shortening.  Those were my only changes and concessions to our modern diet.

Below is my updated versions of the recipes so that you can give them a try yourself!

Cornmeal Biscuits – updated version

3/4 c almond milk

1 c yellow cornmeal

2 T coconut oil

3/4 salt

3/4 c flour

4 t baking powder

Set oven to 450.  In a mixing bowl, combine the cornmeal, coconut oil and salt.  Heat milk in the microwave until hot (I used the auto cook feature on my microwave – which also heats up water for tea so…).  Pour milk  over the cornmeal mix – stir.  Let cool in the fridge for 5 – 10 minutes.

Add the flour and baking powder.  You will have to mix it for a while as it needs to be a moderately stiff dough.  That said, compared to normal biscuits, this is VERY soft, so handle gently.

Lightly dust flour on your counter-top.  Roll out dough to 1/2 inch to 3/4 inch thick.  Cut out biscuits.  Bake for about 15 minutes until golden on top and bottoms.  Makes 6 biscuits.

It is hard to find recipes like this one on line.  Most have a LOT more white flour than cornmeal, making them more like traditional biscuits.  However, I was able to find one that was just like my recipe.  And, I mean JUST like it.  Which probably means that this is not a unique recipe and may have come out of a cookbook or newspaper or someplace back in the day.   Still, my Great great grandmother had to have had really liked it to include it in this cookbook!

My husband and I really liked these!  In fact, he said that I could make them again and that he would eat them for breakfast on his way to work.   They were a bit like a cross between a normal biscuit and cornbread and were really yummy with honey on them!  In fact, my daughter even ate it and liked it!  High praise from a 3 year old.  Next time, I will most likely triple the recipe though – I happen to prefer leftovers!

Rice Muffins – updated version

1/2 c cornmeal

1 c almond milk

1 T coconut oil

2 T sugar

1/2 c cooked white rice

1/3 c flour

1/2 t salt

3 t baking powder

1 egg

Set oven to 400.  In mixing bowl, put in the cornmeal, coconut oil and sugar.  Heat milk in the microwave until hot.  Pour over the cornmeal and mix well.  Cool in the fridge for 5 – 10 minutes.

In a muffin tin, either grease the tins or line with cupcake papers.

Add the rest of the ingredients to the cornmeal mix.  It will bubble up, so quickly ladle the soupy-ish mix into the tins.  Bake for about 25 minutes until golden brown on the top.  Makes about 8 muffins.

Let muffins cool before trying to take the papers off – otherwise muffin likes to stay with the paper.   Just a tip.

Our opinion on these was… eh.  Interesting to be sure, a quick look on line only resulted in one cooked rice muffin recipe…  No doubt a way to use up the dribs and drabs of leftovers.  I did, however,  find a wild rice blueberry muffin that looks really interesting!  In fact, after finding this recipe, I had intended to make 1/2 of the batch of my rice muffins with blueberries… but then I forgot.  My guess is that the blueberries would greatly add to the taste of the muffin and probably be pretty yummy!  So, as I have a lot more cooked rice left – I might try another round with blueberries tomorrow.

This is already a crazy long post, so I will cover the last recipe on the page tomorrow!

And, to everyone who is leaving comments on these pages – thank you for all of your support.  I LOVE doing this.  I am thrilled that so many of you appreciate this very special project of mine.   I love being more connected to my Gram, at a time when I thought that wasn’t possible any more.  My mother recently mailed me 2 more vintage 1930’s cookbooks, one of which was Gram’s and the other my Grandmother’s.  After this cookbook series is done, I will continue with Gram’s recipes from the other cookbooks, so there will be vintage recipes here for many months to come.

There’s an old saying that goes “The way to a man’s heart is through his stomach.” – perhaps a way to know a person is through the recipes that they loved and left behind.