Friday, January 2, 2015

Stove Stories by Dorothy Sargent Boudreau

(Editor's note: Growing up, food and politics were main dinner table discussion with food winning out most nights. My mother, father and grandmother were all excellent cooks. My mother, Dorothy Sargent Boudreau, was also a reporter and besides covering hard news, also had a column in the Lawrence Eagle-Tribune called Stove Stories that didn't just give the recipes but the history of the recipe. She believed that the memory of meals added to the flavor. Before her death in 1990 she began the creation of a cookbook based on those columns. I kept the unfinished manuscript and the idea came to me, to publish it as a series of blog. Despite some glitches in scanning where I couldn't get the type face as I wanted it, here are the recipes. If anyone has any comments or would like to add their own stories to the book, send them to me at and tell me which section you'd like them in.)

“You can give more happiness to more people with less effort by cooking than by any other means.”

So wrote a wise and gentle lady many years ago and how very true!

But a rather caustic Southern gentleman chose to comment both negatively and vehemently on the culinary arts, especially the customs in his part of Dixieland.

“The frying pan is the most dangerous instrument in this state,” he’d say with considerable asperity.

You know whether you’re a kitchen happiness spreader or one who wields a lethal skillet.  Whichever, it’s the rare person who doesn’t have to cook sometime during a lifetime.  Better it be a joy and a delight than a chore and a bore. The choice is yours.

STOVE STORIES is intended to please both the kitchen enthusiast with uncommon and delectable recipes gathered over the years and, hopefully, to whet the appetite and interest of the “I-hate-to-cook” folk and ultimately convert them.

My long love affair with food can be traced to my grandfather, a handsome silver-haired gentleman with an all season tan. He loved his “vittles’” whether his meal was as simple as old fashioned fish cakes with Boston Bake Beans or truly haute cuisine.

Housebound in his final years, grandpa’s interest in food never faltered. He’d help my mother with her menu planning (he lived with us after retiring) and unfailingly compliment her excellent, if plain, meals.
No gourmet cook my mother, her fanciest effort was a Lady Baltimore cake.  But what a way she had with breads (her oatmeal biscuit fairly floated from the oven.) And succulent, fork tender roasts graced our table twice a week.   

The method handed down from my grandmother was to have a roast on Sunday, serve it cold on Monday, then as imaginative left-overs on Tuesday. The cycle began with another roast on Wednesday and so on.   

Saturday was inevitable baked beans, (pea, kidney or yellow eye) accompanied by Boston brown bread, franks or ham, potato salad or cole slaw with custard pie for dessert… as regularly as the sun peeked over the horizon.

All this was fine with grandpa except for his occasional epicurean urges. When these became over-powering he’d send out for such gourmet fare as our small New England town could provide.

While grandpa was still ambulatory, I was frequently his young dinner guest as he and friends explored country inns and city restaurants with total impartiality. Surely he despaired when the prime ribs had been outstanding on one Sabbath excursions and I chose to enthuse about the “warmed up oyster crackers” served with the bisque.

Since those days I’ve developed some very opinionated ideas about food, among them a total aversion to boiled potatoes with two exceptions. But this comes later.

Vegetables, I contend, can be less than tempting unless they’re fresh from the garden.  Serving plain, frozen, canned or store-bought vegetables is a direct line to mealtime boredom.

Now about hors d’oeuvre. Aren’t you tired of both the ubiquitous clam and onion soup dips? Preliminary morsels obviously offer vast opportunity to let yourself go.

Take salads… I’ll mention in my will that person who serves me bite sized salad greens rather than jumbo chunks of this and fat slices of that. Deliver me, too, from limp lettuce or salads swimming in dressing.

Don’t look for recipes for meat loaf, or corn chowder, or similar preparations. Nor will you find Veal Cordon Bleu or Paupiettes of Beef with Olives, for example.  But do try a superb zucchini casserole, a delectably different rice dish, a simply delicious soup and dozens and dozens more.

In other words, I hope you’ll find the majority of recipes new to you, worthy of trying and, above all, deserving of much repetition.  Remember, too, your kitchen is your kingdom, the heart of your home.


There are soups and there are soups! I mean there's the old chicken version with rice, with noodles with dumplings. There's tomato and vegetable and mushroom and minestrone and so many more.

But have you noticed the trend to more unusual soups that are gaining steadily in popularity both in restaurants and in home kitchens? Not that they're that new necessarily, but they're finding favor and adding a nice note to menu planning.

I refer to soups like carrot, peanut, cheddar cheese, 4-day, and salad (yes, that's right, salad soup) to list but a few. And that's not mention the "split-personality" soups that can be served hot or cold.

I first had cheddar cheese variety in a small soup and salad place opened by a young couple who were among the first to feature this light but nourishing luncheon menu. They also offered delicious home-made breads along with an informal salad bar while three different kinds of soups or chowder bubbled away in kettles on an old black stove. The place won instant approval and has been enlarged twice since its modest beginning.

When I first made this cheddar soup, my daughter, Donna-Lane, raved about it, took the recipe, went home and made a kettle full. A friend, whose office is in her home, makes it in double batches for an appetizing and easy luncheon. She likes with croutons. I like sauteed mushrooms added and rice crackers to munch with it.

My particular joy is the "salad soup" mentioned earlier. Haven't you found that you had a generous quantity of dressed salad left over and staring at you, the greens turning limp before your eyes, the croutons soggy? This is no reflection on your salad but on you overestimating the quantity needed.

Now in these days of spiraling food costs, I'm reluctant to waste a crumb, never mind a crust, or even worse a lettuce leave. Read on, for a most delicious way to salvage perfectly good and costly ingredients.

Leslie, a one-time neighbor, was a bride and a fine cook. We often exchanged recipes and the results and she was particularly delighted to receive the salad soup.

Carrot soup became a specialty of my cousin Grace and its deliciously different. I had a similar version in a very fine restaurant, but the texture was grainy. Hers is creamy smooth and with a salad and hot rolls it makes a lovely luncheon.

I love peanut soup and loathe pea soup. The latter probably puts me in the minority for a good old fashioned pea soup made with the essence of a ham bone is high on the popularity poll, especially with men. You won't find a recipe for it here, but you'll find directions for the peanut preparation.

If you really want to get exotic there's a pink strawberry soup recipe that I begged from a bare acquaintance. She said it came from a famous restaurant and I believe it! This is served cold only and is sensational on a hot summer day or night.

Saving best for last in my opinion, at least, I simply adore the cold cherry soup. It's from a famous Boston restaurant and was published in a national gourmet magazine some years ago. Again, Cousin Grace was the first to make this and earned plaudits.

So let's proceed with soups, there are more than I've mentioned.


A hot or cold soup entry, it's a pretty soup, appetizing and satisfying!
  • 1 bunch broccoli
  • 2 stalks celery
  • 1 small onion
  • 3 cups chicken broth
  • 1 cup cream
  • pinch of dry mustard
  • 2 drops of Tabasco
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Wash and trim the broccoli and put in heavy sauce pan. Add the celery and onion, both finely sliced or diced. Add the 3 cups of chicken broth and simmer until the broccoli is just tender. Put this mixture into blender and blend until smooth. Return to sauce pan, add 1 cup cream. Heat slowly, but do NOT boil. Season.

To serve hot add mushroom slices to each cup or served chilled with sprinklings of finely chopped chervil and chives.


There's something comforting about a hearty soup! And, contrary to some opinions, meatless soups
can be hearty and satisfying. And this one in particular is delicious the first day and what you make it on the second and third days.
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cups cooked cabbage, finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, shredded
  • 3 whole mushrooms, finely chopped
  • 1 small turnip, finely diced
  • 3 or 4 leaves spinach
  • 1 medium zucchini, finely diced
  • 1 small tomato, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • Few leaves of rosemary
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
Combine in a 3 quart sauce pan, cover with water and cook over very low heat until comes to a boil.

Then simmer for 1 1/2 hours and serve piping hot with pumpernickel.

You'll have about 8 cups.

A day or two later use your imagination, maybe add some chick peas, some green beans, rice.

Later in the week, add some more tomatoes, a few peas, broccoli or whatever suits your fancy.

Replenish the stock with chicken broth, or beef, if you'd rather.

What a soup kettle you'll have!


One of my very favorite soups, this is a conversation piece. The flavor is haunting, elusive and
delicious. This recipe will serve four or two if you like it as much as I do.
  • 1 tbsp. butter 1 tbsp. flour
  • 1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 1/4 cup sherry
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • Paprika
Melt butter in heavy soup kettle over low heat, blend in flour and remove from heat.

Blend in peanut butter.

Scald milk (heat to just boiling point) and add gradually, stirring constantly.

Return mixture to low heat, stirring until its steaming hot, but NOT boiling.

Add sherry and salt.

Serve at once, with a dusting of paprika and freshly ground pepper.

Put a few peanuts in each cup.

Love it! Love it!


This is in no way your traditional New England fish chowder, but it is easy and delicious. I've tried
adding salt pork to the original recipe given me. It seems to make this chowder even better.

Really, I don't remember which aunt contributed this many years ago, but I do know it's a favorite with family and friends.
  • 1/4 lb. at least of salt pork
  • 2 lbs of haddock or cod fillets
  • 2 medium potatoes, peeled and diced
  • Several  chopped celery leaves
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 1/4 dried dill seed
  • 1/4 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 1/2 cup Vermouth
  • 3 cups boiling water
  • 3 cups light cream
Bake the fish until flaky.

Add all ingredients to 3-quart sauce pan with 3 cups boiling water.

Simmer until vegetables are done.

Add Vermouth and 3 cups light cream. (Note: there's chopped parsley in the photo)


  • 2 one-pound cans pitted tart cherries
  • Juice from a third can of cherries
  • 1 cherry can of water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 6 whole gloves
  • 6 allspice berries
  • 1 lemon slived
  • 1 two-inch cinnamon stick
  • Dash of salt
  • 1 tbsp. flour
  • 2 cups light cream
  • 1/2 bottle white whine such as Medoc
In a kettle combine the two 1-pound cans of cherries, the juice from the third can, 1 cherry can water, the sugar, cloves, allspice, sliced lemon, cinnamon and salt.

Bring to a boil.

Blend 1 tbsp. smoothly into the 3 cups light cream and stir the mixture into the cherry combination.

Add the 1/2 bottle white wine and bring to a boil stirring constantly.

Remove from heat and chill thorough.

Serve with 1 tbsp. whipped cream on each serving.

Will keep for 2 weeks refrigerated.

Makes 12 small servings.


I had an uncle with whom I had great rapport although we argued constantly (but without rancor) at
the drop of a word, any word.

Financially very comfortable he was the ultimate in contradiction. He never buttoned any sweater he ever owned. The elbows might be worn but the buttonholes were as they came from the men's shop.

Three cups of tea from one teabag was his cardinal rule but he'd pay $400 for a postage stamp without blinking an eye. He'd have loved the economical way with leftovers.

Keep a soup "stockpot" in your refrigerator by pouring in a suitable kettle all juice from vegetables, canned, fresh or froze. Also add any leftover bits of meats and vegetables. At the end of the week simmer the stock with either a packet of dry soup mix or add fresh vegetables any kind of cooked pasta or whatever suits your fancy. An easy meal with a salad and French bread of hot rolls.


This must be the most ingenious leftover ever devised. It is always different and always delicious.
Don't tell your family you're serving them the remains of yesterday's salad or that's why those little leftovers have vanished from the refrigerator. If they insist on knowing what it is, tell them it's "Spring Soup."
  • 1 1/2 cups green salad more or less with dressing remaining in bowl
  • Lettuce leaves (5 or 6 large)
  • 1/2 to 2 cups leftover cooked vegetables
  • 2 to 3 tbp. vegetable oil
  • 1 to3 cans chicken broth or stock
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 2 drops Tabasco
Heat oil in a heavy sauce pan and add leftover salad and vegetables.

Saute over medium heat 5 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until lettuce is wilted.

Pour this mixture into a blender with some of the chicken broth and puree thoroughly. Return to the broth remaining in the sauce pan and bring to moderate boil.

Add, salt, pepper and Tabasco.

Serve with croutons if desired.

The measurements are flexible and dictated by the amount of ingredients you have on hand.


Even people who don't like carrots like this.
  • 1-1/2 cups carrots, cut up, cooked
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup light cream
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • Dash nutmeg
  • Dash cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp. brown sugar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
Blend carrots, broth, spices. Heat. Add cream and milk and simmer. Do NOT boil.


Get out the soup kettle and prepare to see your reputation soar to new heights. The first hint of autumn
absolutely dictates this soup, although I actually make it all year round. It's that good.
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 tbsp. butter
  • 1 tbsp. flour
  • 1/2 cup chicken stock (or beef)
  • 4 cups milk
  • 1/4 SHARP cheddar cheese
  • 1/8 tsp. dry mustard
  • 1/8 tsp. freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • Paprika
  • Worcestershire sauce
  • Sauteed mushrooms (optional)
Chop the onion medium fine and saute in butter in a heavy kettle over low heat. Don't let them brown.

Sprinkle with flour, stir in a smooth paste.

Gradually stir in chicken (or beef) broth.

Add milk slowly, stirring  constantly until thickened.

You can use a double boiler to be safer if you'd prefer.

Grate in SHARP cheddar cheese, add dry mustard, stir constantly.

Heat until cheese melts and remove from the stove at once.

Season with salt, pepper, paprika and two or three stops of Worcestershire.

Add sauteed mushrooms if you wish.

Six servings. you'll wish you'd doubled it.


Pretty as a picture, this is a party soup or for romantic dinners for two. Call it a glamorous soup, call it
exotic, call it elegant.
  • 1 pound fresh ripe strawberries
  • 4 cups Port
  • 1 1/4 cups water
  • 1 cup sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 3 tbsp. arrowroot
Hull and wash strawberries and put in a saucepan with 4 cups Port and one cup of water.

Bring to a boil.

Mix the arrowroot with with 1/4 cup water and stir into the hot soup.

Reheat and stir until it thickens.

Serve the soup chilled and topped with a small dollop of whipped cream and/or a sprinkle of chopped walnuts.

Serves six to 10 depending on the role it plays in your menu.

Thursday, January 1, 2015


This chapter is not for teetotalers, although even the most conservative may well have an occasion to serve an alcoholic beverage, or two or there. Take a daughter's wedding for example.

Indeed, the beatific beverages are geared to those who like the unusual--just about anyone can make a decent martini, or Manhattan or whiskey sour, can't they?

Almost anyone can make a passing-good Bloody Mary, but the recipe for that drink herein contained, far surpasses any I've ever had. And there have been many imbibers at my brunches who agree and tote the recipe home. So it's not an unusual drink, but one that is superior.

Now about cocktail parties, did you ever think of substituting a really superb Richmond punch and come right out and call it a punch party? The first time I did this, there were 75 people gathered, and it was absolutely the best party we ever had. The guests were given to song backed by a talented guest with a large repertoire at our small electric organ. It was a mellow group that arrived a bit late at the club dance.

Another time, my former husband volunteered me for making this libation for the wedding of a good friend's daughter. My kitchen reeked for fumes, for I made 10 batches--it was a large wedding. The friend rewarded me with a sand wedge, which helped by golf game no end. Fair enough, I thought!

Again, I volunteered to make umpteen batches for our class reunion. We kept looking younger and younger after each trip to the punch bowl! A smashing success, that reunion.

Actually every recipe is worthy of your efforts when the occasion demands. I've just emphasized punch as an attractive alternative to the martini/Manhattan routine.

There are, as you know, hot and cold weather drinks. Can't you see yourself swinging lazily in a hammock on a hot summer day, book in hand, and a frosty pitcher of Sangria at the ready. Or take a snowy, gusty cold winter's night, a blazing fir and a hot buttered rum right next to the backgammon table? That's what I mean by seasonal drinks.

So let's start with a summer drink . . .  Sangria!


If you've been buying bottled Sangria, try this recipe. You'll think you've discovered a new drink. It's
fruitier, zingier and infinitely more refreshing. It's big at barbecues, just to name one place it shines. I'd tell you where it comes from, if I could remember, which I can't.

Combine 3/4 cup of sugar and 1/3 cup water in sauce pan and bring to a boil over moderately low heat, stirring and washing down any sugar crystals that cling to the sides of the pan. A brush dipped in cold water is helpful and keep at it until all the sugar is dissolved.

Remove the pan from the heat and add thinly sliced 2 oranges, 1 lemon, 1 lime and 3 cloves. Let the fruit macerate in the syrup for 12 hours.

At your leisure, pour the fruit mixture into a large picture, add 2 bottles of dry red wine and chill for at least four hours.

When ready to serve, stir the mixture well and pour into 8-ounce highball glasses, each partially filled with ice cubes. Be sure there is a slice or two of fruit in each glass. Yields about two quarts.


Maybe this should have gone in the SWEET TOOTH chapter because it's actually a dessert, but then again, is has more scotch whiskey in it than you'd put in a glass on the rocks. I don't even like scotch but consumed this with gusto when it was first served to me. The hostess said it was a contest winner somewhat deservedly so. She also said you could could make it with rum or brandy just as well. And you can!
  • 1/2 cup scotch whiskey, rum or brandy
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 cup honey
  • Nutmeg, freshly grated
  • Sliced almonds
Beat the heavy cream at high speed until it holds firm peaks. In a second bowl combine the honey with your choice of liquor. Fold this mixture into the whip cream and beat it together on low speed. Blend well. Divide among 8 glasses (sherbet, wine or whiskey sour). Cover and refrigerate several hours at a minimum. When ready to serve, sprinkle with nutmeg and scatter sliced almonds on top. Serves 6 to 8. And a spoon is required.


I love Kahlua. I love Black Russians, which you can't have without Kahlua. But I often balk at the price. My son alternated between calling me "chintzy" and "extravagant" dependent on my mood I'm in, because obviously I can't be both at the same time. "It's all a matter of priorities," I sniff whenever such a discussion occurs. Come be "chintzy" with me . . . it's delicious!
  • 4 cups water
  • 3 cups sugar
  • 12 tsp. instant coffee
  • 2-3 cups vodka ( I use 3)
  • 3 tsp. vanilla extract
Bring water to boil, add sugar and instant coffee. Mix well and simmer for two hours. When cold, add vodka and vanilla. This can be used immediately (and often is) but the flavor improves with age. I
make two batches at a time -- one for sampling, one for aging!


This is a cold weather punch to warm one's innards. I think it originated in Maine and I could be wrong, but I first had it in Massachusetts and that's for sure. It's grand for the holiday season and perks up Open Houses in the merriest way! I altered the recipe as given to me by increasing the butter and the lemon and orange juice. Otherwise it is the same.

IMPORTANT to choose a metal punch bowl for the hot water could shatter one made of glass. So let's get on . . .

Pour two/fifth black rum into the metal punch bowl, add the juice of one lemon and one orange. Put one pound of honey and one quarter pound of butter in a sauce pan and simmer until the butter is melted. Add to the punch bowl, add one quart of boiling water and mix well. Taste and add more water if desired. Sprinkle with freshly grated nutmeg and serve. You're on your own in devising a way to keep if pleasantly warm. I use Sterno under a stand that holds the punch bowl. Found it in a garage sale. But the better stores will have the proper punch warming equipment.


I've said more than enough about this punch already but one last word--it's really special, smooth as velvet and potent. But you can control the latter by increasing the amount of soda you add. Taste if first before tampering with the recipe tho.
  • 1 qt. strong Oolong tea
  • 1 qt. Jamaican dark rum
  • 1 qt. port wine
  • 1 qt. brandy
  • 1/2 pint orange Curacao or triple sec
  • Juice of 12 medium-size lemons
  • 3 cups granulated sugar
To the tea while it is hot add sugar and lemon juice. Mix thoroughly and strain through a cotton cloth. When cool, add brandy, rum, port, and Curacao. Pour into empty liquor bottles. When ready to serve, pour in punch bowl and add one quarter soda or carbonated water for each quart of punch. Serve in a large bowl with a block of ice. Orange slices stuck with cloves are a nice garnish.


For cold weather and frosty autumn evenings through frigid winter nights. Use this in the Apple Velvet
cocktail (next). Call it double duty cider.

In a heavy sauce pan mix together two quarts apple cider, 1/2 cup brown sugar. Add to this a spice bag containing 1 tsp. each of whole allspice, whole cloves, and a cracked cinnamon stick. Now simmer the mixture for 20 minutes. Remove the spice bag, bottle, cool and refrigerate. Delicious hot of cold or add to Apple Velvet Cocktail.


Combine 1 1/2 oz. of applejack with three oz. of your cold mulled cider, a teaspoon of unbeaten egg white and a generous pinch of nutmeg. Crack and add two ice cubes, shake vigorously and strain into a whiskey sour glass. Serves one. Better make more. You'll be glad you did!


There's a little country inn on the North Shore which doesn't have a liquor license, but which had no
objection to totting your own. In fact, they'll be delighted to serve you the fixings for a Bloody Mary and state so on their menu.

Well, Lillian I, you must remember her by now, love to go there for Sunday brunch.

She's is a marvelous story teller and regales her Boston friends with tales of brunching away while reaching into a paper bag for the bottle of Bloody Marys.

About the Inn. Fish so fresh it stopped only minutes on its way from sea to skillet.

This is the Bloody Mary we especially enjoy!

For each drink, half fill a cocktail shaker with crushed ice and pour over it 1 jigger of vodka, 2 jiggers tomato juice, 1/3 jigger lemon juice, a dash of Worcestershire sauce, a pinch of celery salt and salt and pepper to taste. Shake the mixture well and strain into a glass.

This makes only one drink, of course. We make much more for the paper bag brunch!

P.S. I add two drops of Tabasco. Lillian doesn't. She doesn't know I do either.


Dolores, a former co-worker (those were my days in advertising) came bubbling in one day to tell of a delightful party and a delicious punch. Come to think of it, there was much talk about food and recipes in the office. Simplicity itself and totally different from the many of the less inspired punches encountered at parties, This is a lighter potion than many versions and very pretty too.
  • 1 large can of Hawaiian fruit punch (chilled)
  • 1 large can of sweetened pineapple juice
  • Vodka to suit the taste
  • Vanilla ice cream
Assemble all ingredients in a chilled punch bowl, hopefully with an ice ring in which you've embedded a pretty fruit design) and mix well. At the last minute float scoops of vanilla ice cream in the punch,which, by the way, comes out a heavenly pink color, studded with the white ice cream scoops. Allow three four-oz. serving per guest at the very minimum and order your ingredients in quantities so determined. Better plan more because this is delicious. Refrigerate any leftover punch, which is an unlikely eventuality.


Hot buttered rum for cold wintry nights! And this recipe is a winner. More time consuming than many but absolutely superb. Came from some restaurant somewhere, according to Olive, who first introduced me to this extra special version of an old favorite. This is the cup that cheers. And cheers and cheer!

Make a rum butter by creaming together two cups of  soft butter 4 1/2 cups brown sugar, 1 1/2 cups honey 1/4 rum extract (I use real room not extract), 2 tbsp. grated nutmeg, 2 tsps. cinnamon, i tsp. ground cloves. You should have approximately 1 quart.

Scald a 10 oz. mug and for each drink stir in 1/4 cup of rum butter and 1/4 cup boiling water until the butter is melted. Now stir in 1 1/2 oz. dark rum and fill the mug with boiling water. Sip and enjoy!

Wednesday, December 31, 2014


DON'T you just love pickles, jellies, jams, marmalades?

I do and feel the Pennsylvania Dutch deserve a “tip of the tam” for their seven sweets and seven sours approach to meals.

There is, of course, a huge variety of commercial preparations on your supermarket shelves and most of them are excellent, too. But these just don’t have the same appeal as those marked, for example, “From the kitchen of …” where your name shines forth.

Really, unless you’re over run with your own home grown fruits and vegetables, I’d not be apt to go out and buy the fresh ingredients from the local farmers’ market or favorite produce stand. No, I’d opt for the commercially packed with a few exceptions like the recipes included here. (Editors note: her daughter disagrees.) But that’s just my view.

There is nothing, but nothing, of course, as scrumptious as the aroma drifting from a kitchen where canning or preserving is in progress, whether you grew, bought or were given the ingredients.

Whatever your decision in this department, the recipes herein are quite different from any you’ll find either in supermarkets or in those marvelous gourmet shops that seem to be mushrooming around the country. I can spend hours in these, whether it’s the shop devoted to utensils and kitchen aids or the kind that features foodstuffs not available in ordinary markets.  I treasure a knife found in a kitchen shop along with many other items, but that knife remains my favorite above all others. Had never seen it before and haven’t seen it since.

And the crackers, mustards, cheeses, teas, coffees, and on and on, to be found! But back to the subject at hand.

We spent two autumn days a few years ago in my sun-dappled kitchen where many hands made light work. That was the last year we had time to have a garden. What fun we had, laughing and chopping, smiling and slicing, endlessly stirring, skimming, pouring and sealing.

Much of the fruits of our labors went into Christmas baskets for city dwelling friends and relatives after we took care to see that our own pantry shelves were generously stocked.

From that all out autumn effort, you’ll find four pickle relish and just one for jelly – the pepper relish jelly that I always have on hand, even if I have to buy the ingredients despite my feelings on that score.

The other recipes can be made any old time not being at all dependent on the garden’s bounty.

If I had to choose one favorite from this chapter, it would be the pepper relish jelly, but I don’t have to make a choice. They’re all so delicious, so easy to make, and I feel so delightfully domestic during the making, storing and best of all, eating!


Back in my newspaper days I was assigned to do a feature story on Ann Morgan of Gray and Cole Nursery,Inc., and before we got through the interview the talk had turned to cooking.   


Ann is an accomplished hand a growing, freezing, canning and cooking. When she mentioned “zucchini pickles” I was intrigued for that was the year of our last garden and we were overrun with the ubiquitous zucchini.   

Ann very graciously wrote out the recipe for us and it was a top favorite then and now.
  • 3 quarts thinly sliced, unpeeled zucchini squash, (If you want to use up your larger zucchini, slice thinly and halve or quarter, dependent on size).
  • 2 medium onions, peeled and thinly sliced    
  • 1 tsp. celery seed
  • 2 tsps. mustard seed
  • 1/4 cup pickling salts
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp. dry mustard
  • 2 cups vinegar                                             
  • 1/2 tsp. dry mustard 
  • 2 cups sugar
Combine zucchini and onions. 

Sprinkle with salt, cover with cold water and let stand two hours.   

Drain, rinse with fresh water, drain again.  

Combine remaining ingredients in enamel or stainless steel kettle and bring to boil. Cook two minutes.   

Add zucchini and onions, remove from heat and let stand two hours.  

Bring again to boil and cook five minutes.   

Ladle hot into hot sterilized pint jars and process in boiling water bath for five minutes to ensure a seal.   

Makes about four pints.   

You’ll be asked for this recipe! 



This is really delicious served as a garnish for roast pork, ham or poultry and it does wonders to dress up a meat loaf.  In the latter case, put chunks on top of your loaf during the last 15 minutes in the oven.  You can, of course, just serve it as a nice addition to your relish dish. Can’t remember where or when I found this but have been making it forever, it seems.
  • 1 No. 2-1/2 can of sliced pineapple, drained
  • To the pineapple juice add:
  • 1 cup vinegar                                                
  • 1-1/2 tsp. whole cloves
  • 1 cup brown sugar                           
  • 3 three-inch sticks cinnamon
Bring this mixture to a boil and then simmer 10 minutes.   

Add the pineapple which you’ve cut into thirds or quarters and cook very slowly for 15 minutes.

Now you may put it in hot, sterile jars and seal or simply chill in the refrigerator until needed. It should disappear quite quickly!


Clipped this from some newspaper and made just half a batch. Knew immediately it should have been
doubled, not halved for these pickles are absolutely superb. Even people who don’t like pickles like these as proven by a friend who loathes vinegar and hence shuns pickles. How Louisa loves these. And she’s not alone – everyone does.  Try to eat just one slice… no way!
  • 3 large green cucumbers (or an equivalent amount of pickling cukes)
  • 1 tsp. salt 
  • 2 tsp. celery seed
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  •  green pepper, finely chopped                            
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped (onion flakes if you must)
  • 1 lemon sliced into half circles
Cut unpeeled cucumbers into about one-sixteenth inch slices. 

Mix with green pepper, onion, salt and celery seed and let stand at room temperature for an hour. (They’re good even now but resist the urge to nibble).  

Mix sugar with lemon juice, being sure sugar is completely dissolved.

Pour over vegetable mixture, add lemon slices and stir to blend well. 

Refrigerate for 24 hours.

Crisp, delicious and makes five cups.


“You didn’t put in any Tabasco,” I said to J. as he scrambled eggs on a Sunday morning. 

“Of course not, I’m not the Tabasco nut, you are. You’d put it in ice cream, I think,” he retorted.   

Not quite, but almost, I thought.  So . . . when I found this recipe for Tabasco jelly, my day was made.  I haven’t mentioned it to J, however. It’s lovely with meat, men like it, women like it, and this is a great gift item. Try it, please!

In a large sauce pan mix 1 cup water, 2 tsps. Tabasco (more if your taste buds can stand it very hot), 1/3 cup lemon juice and 3 cups sugar.   

Bring to a boil, stirring all the while.

Add 1/2 bottle fruit pectin and a small amount of red food coloring (to the shade that appeals to you).  

Continue stirring well until the mixture comes to a full rolling boil.

Boil hard 1/2 minute and remove from heat; skim thoroughly.  

Pour into 4 hot, sterilized 5-oz glasses and seal with paraffin.


Back in 1965, I cut this from one of the women’s magazines and made it the very next day. This is good with meat, your breakfast eggs, on your relish dish, and again, as a deliciously different gift.  

This is one of the jelly recipes I said before that doesn’t depend on your garden’s bounty and can be made any old time the jelly-making mood strikes, or the taste buds dictate.

In a large saucepan measure 2-1/4 cups unsweetened grapefruit juice and 1/4 cup of fresh lemon juice (don’t quibble here – use FRESHLY SQUEEZED lemon juice).

Add 7 cups of sugar and mix well.  Place over a high heat and bring to a boil, stirring constantly.   

The VERY MOMENT it starts to boil, stir in one bottle of liquid fruit pectin.   

Then bring to a FULL rolling boil and boil hard for ONE minute, stirring constantly.

Remove from heat, skim thoroughly, and stir in two teaspoons dried rosemary and pour quickly into scalded jelly glasses. 

 Or if you prefer to use fresh rosemary, plunge a spray into boiling water for one minute.  Remove and separate into large or small sprigs depending on the size of your glasses.  Place one sprig in each glass. 

Makes about 6 cups.


Shirley and I, she was a former newspaper colleague, used to anticipate green tomato season with mouth
watering discussions of favorite recipes and this was high on the list.  

We also discussed best methods of frying the green globes and never did come to a decision on this.

But about pickling, you choose the quantity of tomatoes and then do this.            
  • Firm green tomatoes, preferably small (cut larger ones into quarters)                        
  • Celery stalks (one for each jar) 
  • Green peppers (1/4 for each jar)
  • Garlic cloves (one for each jar)
For the brine:
  • 2 quarts water                                                         
  • 1 head fresh dill or two tbsp. dill seed per jar
  • 1 quart vinegar                                                          
  • 1 cup of Kosher or canning salt
Boil water, vinegar, salt and dill for five minutes.

In each sterilized jar put tomatoes, one whole garlic clove, one stalk celery, and a quarter of a green pepper. Pour hot brine over all and seal.   

Store for a minimum of 6 weeks.

Resist sampling!


I have a friend who has everything and is a real challenge when it comes gift giving time. After years of
searching for the unusual I finally came up with gourmet gift baskets.  

Then this began to pall.  

How many times can you give cheese, fruits, nuts, exotic teas, gourmet coffee blends.  And she could buy these herself. 

Now she is the recipient of the choicest items from our kitchen which is an ideal solution because she just doesn’t have the time.  Eileen loves these pickled carrots at cocktail hour.
  • Enough carrot sticks to fill a pint jar                     
  • 1 tbsp. salt                                                                
  • 1 tbsp. sugar
  • 1 large garlic clove, diced
  • 1 tsp. dill seed
  • ½ medium onion, diced
  • ½ cup water
  • ½ cup white wine vinegar
 Put carrots and all ingredients except water and vinegar into the pint jar (sterilized, of course!)

Combine water and vinegar and boil.

Pour hot over carrots.

Refrigerate at least two days before sampling or serving.

Will keep refrigerated for four to six weeks.


Mother had a friend named Mable who was probably the most fastidious housekeeper I’ve ever known.   
A particle of dust wouldn’t have dared settle in her immaculate home. 

She was also an excellent cook.

During my adolescence this lady and I didn’t always see eye to eye especially if one of my teen-age escapades had disturbed my mother.

But on recipes we did agree and exchanged them early on.

This Pepper Relish Jelly is hers and I shall always be grateful.

She adored my Luncheon Hamburg which I’ve not included here since it has since become quite commonplace.

This jelly, by the way, is superb with meat, scrambled eggs, macaroni and cheese!
  • 2 cups or 14 oz. of green and red peppers
  • 1-1/12 cups vinegar
  • 1 bottle Certo
  • 7 cups or 3 lbs. of sugar
Chop peppers finely and rinse thoroughly in sieve.

Put sugar, vinegar and peppers into a large kettle, mix well and bring to a full rolling boil, stirring constantly for two minutes.

Add Certo and boil one minute.

Remove from stove.

Stir and skim by turns for just five minutes.

Cool slightly to prevent floating pepper pieces.

Pour quickly into sterilized glasses and seal with paraffin at once.


Talk about easy recipes!  If you love half sours you’ll adore these, both the results and the ease of
preparation. Put these in your picnic basket. Make room on your relish tray.  Munch on them if you get the pickle craving some people do..  Give them as gifts. First make your half sour pickling brine.
  • 8 cups cold water                                       
  • 1/2 cup coarse salt (Kosher salt  if you can find it)
  • 1/2 cup white vinegar
Mix very, very well, but DON’T BOIL or even HEAT.

Now sterilize as many jars as you care to fill.

Wash small cucumbers (pickling type preferred).

Wash green tomatoes.  Notice we’ve let you determine quantities.

If you’re using larger tomatoes and cucumbers cut into pieces to fit

Put into jars and in each put 1 chopped garlic clove, I heaping tablespoon pickling spice, 1 hot finger pepper, and 1 teaspoon dill seed.

Add brine to cover and seal and refrigerate for 14 days.

Turn jars upside down every couple of days to mix.


Really questioned whether these properly belonged in the pickle chapter but the Merriam-Webster pocket
dictionary defined marinate as “to steep in a brine or pickle.” So I use a commercially bottled salad dressing, several in fact, not all at once, of course!

Another minimal effortless way to get compliments. 

Another nice gift!

One pound of fresh mushrooms or equivalent in the canned variety.  Fresh button mushrooms are best. Canned will do.  If using fresh, wipe clean before sauteing in butter. If you can only get the large, cut into quarters or whatever is necessary to approximate the button size. 

Now choose a commercial salad dressing, or use one of your own favorites and simply pour over the mushrooms you’ve drained and put in sterilized jars.

Don’t bother to seal… they’ll disappear too fast.  But do let them marinate for 24 hours at least.

My No.1 choice for dressing is a Caesar or a red wine vinegar and oil! Green Goddess dressing is very good and colorful too! It’s your choice now! 



LET'S start this "salad and slaws" section right off with the controversy over cut or torn greens even tho' the tossed salad is the only one of the infinite varieties. Let anyone, who will argue the merits of tearing the spinach or lettuce of whatever, I don't care if the greens are torn or cut as long as they end up in BITE-SIZED pieces.

Any detailed recipes for the ubiquitous tossed version are quite unnecessary, I think. This applies, too, to potato salad, a universal favorite and the one which everyone knows you boil the potatoes in their skins, peel and dice still warm the better to absorb whatever dressing you use? I thought so.

But I must mention Barbara's treatment. She dices the potatoes in one half inch cubes, uses mayonnaise sparingly, adds finely diced onion, celery and generous amounts of dill pickle. it's deliciously different.

I cut my potatoes in fairly small pieces, add chopped pepper, onion, celery, sliced hard cooked eggs and finely cut pimento and use mayonnaise more generously. Betsy goes my route but adds shredded carrots and is always asked to make hers for July Fourth celebrations.

The Meadow Brook vegetable salad (named for the golf club where it starred at Saturday night get -togethers) is almost purple, a color which could and has turned from people off until they tasted it and became immediate converts. This is often requested.

Even with stratospheric cost, Dodie's molded crab meat salad is worth making. An ardent golfer, Dodie is such a good cook, she was frequently drafted from the fairways to take charge of the several ladies' guest day luncheons. Her salad was a top favorite on these occasions and always with me.

You don't need a recipe for this but I bet you've never had roast pork salad. I prefer it to the chicken offering and even buy a larger pork roast than needed just to assure sufficient leftovers for the making. Do with the pork just as would with the chicken.

There was a fish market in town where I grew up that I think was patronized by every single inhabitant. This was the fish next best to catching your own. Later, the market expanded and offered fish plates accompanied a cole slaw that was quite unusual and equally elusive in determining the dressing. Simple as ABC, as you'll see when you try Rockport Slaw.

No recipe is called for here but it was such a nice touch to a luncheon I had in an ocean-side tea room. The tomato stuffed with turkey salad was attractively cut, nestled in the crispest lettuce and the little extra was halved white grapes tucked on and around the salad. Little things add lots!

Let's get on then with these and other salads and slaws!


I've mentioned Dodie previously and that was a prime favorite of mine. Suffice to say then that she served this salad on the crispiest lettuce, garnished with black and green olives.

Serve piping, hot buttery rolls for a delicious summer luncheon.

Peppermint stick ice cream drizzled with chocolate sauce and accompanied by tiny sugar wafers climaxed Dodie's golf luncheon menu winner.
  • 1 can tomato soup
  • 3 small packages of cream cheese
  • 1 envelope plain gelatin
  • 1 can crab meat
  • 1 cup celery
  • 1/3 cup green pepper
  • 1/3 cup onion
  • 1 cup mayonnaise (use the best here)
Dice all raw vegetables finely.

Heat soup with gelatin, which should be completely dissolved.

Add cream cheese, which you've had a room temperature to soften.

Mix well and add remaining ingredients.

Makes eight individual salads or you the salad may be put in a lightly oiled square pan and cut into eights.

Serve with a pretty sauce dish and additional mayonnaise thinned with light cream and garnished with chopped parsley or chives.


No, not named for Rockport, Mass, the artist habitat, but the fish market in town, I told you about. It reallyis quite different from most slaws and compliment winning when served.

(Editor's note: photo of the fish market)

Shred as much cabbage as the occasion demands. Shred one third as much green pepper. Finely dice a small onion, preferably red. Mix all ingredients.

For small amounts make this quantity of dressing. Just double or triple the ingredients for a more bountiful amount.
  • 1/3 cup oil
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/3 cup white vinegar
  • Dash of salt
  • 2 drops of Tabasco
Mix all together and add to vegetables. I've been known to chop the cabbage, green pepper and onion reasonably finely. But shred or chop . . . it's delicious.


So called, because there has yet to be a person who can even begin to guess how this refreshing salad is put together They may not be able to identify but they consume it with relish and so very often ask for the recipe.

It's such a nice red that it should be combined with less vividly hued entree . . . chicken or fish, maybe . . . certainly not rare roast beef. But use your own color and food sense.
  • 3 regular-sized packages raspberry gelatin
  • 1 1/4 cups hot water
  • 3 one-pound cans stewed tomatoes (preferably the type that includes onion, celery peppers, etc.)
  • 6 drops Tabasco
Dissolve the raspberry gelatin in 1 1/4 cups hot water.

Break up the tomatoes into smaller pieces and add to gelatin mixture.

Add Tabasco. pour into a lightly oiled 12-cup ring mold and chill until really firm.

Unmold on your choice of greens.

Hopefully you have a footed dish that will fit the center of the mold to hold the following dressing.

Using the dish, you see, will prevent the dressing from spreading onto the salad making for a messy leftover (if there should be any, that is). Serves 12 to 18.

Add 1 tablespoon creamed horseradish, 1/2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. sugar to one pint commercial sour cream. Mix well and chill in the footed dish you've selected before centering it in your mystery ring salad.


I found the cleverest sprout kits at Sunny Green Gardens in Haverhill, Mass. and fell in love with the recipes that come with them. This won the popularity poll in a family salad contest.
  • 2 cups salad sprout mix
  • 1/2 lb. spinach
  • 1 head lettuce
  • 3 carrots grated
  • 3/4 cup raisins (plumped previously in water and then drained)
For an unusual and piquant dressing to add to the above  . . .combine one cup vegetable oil, 8 tsps. cider vinegar or lemon juice, 1/2 tsp. celery seed, 2 tbsps. sugar, one small onion finely chopped, and salt and pepper to taste. Add to the salad bowl ingredients and toss thoroughly. Folks will come back for seconds!


As any home gardener knows, cucumbers usually provide a bountiful crop. So new ways with this vegetable are always welcome. By the way, did you ever just slice and saute them in butter, sprinkle with salt and pepper?

Delectable, but I'm getting away from the recipe at hand.
  • 2 large cucumbers pared. Run a fork down the skin lengthwise for a fluted effect
  • 1 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 medium green pepper, halved and seeded
  • 1 medium and mild onion
  • 1 tbsp. chopped parsley
  • 1 tbsp. salad oil
  • 1/2 tsp. dill weed.
Slice cucumbers into a bowl and sprinkle with 1 tsp. salt and let stand for an hour at least.

Pour off liquid, rinse and drain well. Slice green pepper into thin strips and combine with cucumbers.

Sprinkle with parsley.

Combine and mix remaining ingredients and pour over vegetables.

Cover and chill at least two hours, mixing occasionally.

Overnight chilling is even better.

Serve as salad on top of crisp lettuce.


Here's another way with cucumbers taht overrun home gardens. Some folks call this a relish. Others serve them mounded on greens and garnished with a thin slice of red onion or maybe a shiny black olive.

This is from my cousin Mabel, who got it from her friend Florence, many moons ago.

This is not a hard and fast specific recipe, but rather it's a "use your head and taste as you go," and estimate the quantity of the staple by the number you plan to serve.

8 medium cucumbers, sliced thin, and I mean thin.

Put some in a colander, cover with a plate to fit and weight down with anything conveniently at hand that will serve to extract the juices. Allow 3 to 4 hours.

Press out the remaining juices and discard.

Put cukes in a bowl.

Here's where your culinary cunning comes into play.

Add light cream with a light hand and mix well. You want the cukes well coated but not juicy.

Add vinegar very sparingly -- you want a hint, not an overpowering vinegary taste.

Salt and pepper (freshly ground of course!)

These can be served immediately, but i think at least two hours refrigeration adds that extra something to an already delicious dish. I'd serve four with these amounts. Enjoy!


My mother and all her friends were good cooks. One group had been together from childhood and were still going strong after 50 years of meeting at each others homes and occasionally taking trips.

Another group was her bridge club whose game was debatable, but whose refreshments were elegant.

A third was the church circle and these ladies often did wedding receptions in the church parlor to earn money for the treasury and ultimate contribution to the church's coffers.

Daisy was a member of the latter two groups and a fine cook. She used to serve this dressing on a lettuce wedge for the simplest of salads. if memory serves, my mother used to serve it when we had steak.
  • 1 can tomato soup
  • 1 1/2 cup of salad oil
  • 3/4 cup of vinegar
  • 3/4 cup of sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp. mustard
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 2 tsp. grated onion
  • 2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
Put in a jar, cover and shake well.

Simple to make, simply delicious.


As I mentioned previously, this has a purple hue, what else from beets?

It was a most popular item served many, many years ago at Saturday night bean suppers at Meadow Brook Golf Club.

Simplicity itself. I put it together in minutes when Betsy and I decided to have a grill roasted steak at her Hidden Valley retreat.

We also roasted lavishly buttered foil wrapped large onions sprinkled with salt and pepper.

Foil wrapped garlic bread completed the al fresco meal as we ate at the edge of the pond gazing across at the majestic mountains. All was well with our world!

Cook, drain and chill a small package of frozen mixed vegetables.

Add a medium can of julienne beets (if you can't find these, julienne some sliced beets).

Add finely diced red onions to suit your tast and add to mixed vegetables.

Add three or four drops of Tabasco.

Bind with sufficient mayonnaise to make cohesive but not runny. Serve on lettuce if you wish, or plain without if you don't.


Absolutely nothing glamorous about the name, RAW MUSHROOM SALAD, doesn't even whet the taste
buds, but wait until you try it, and please do.

And we'll wager not a person who eats this will realize that the mushroom are RAW! It goes like this . . .

SLICE one pound of mushrooms paper thin. (Of course, you've wiped them clean and dry first and nipped off the end of the stems!) Your efforts should result in little umbrella shaped slices.

SPRINKLE the slices with two tbsp. fresh lemon juice to prevent discoloration. (You can grate the lemon first and sprinkle 1/2 tsp. over the slices, too.)

COMBINE 1/2 tsp. sugar, 1 tsp. salt, 1/2 tsp. celery seed, 1 tbsp. chopped parsley and a small  dash of garlic salt with 1 cup heavy cream.

POUR this over the mushrooms and MIX well but gently.

REFRIGERATE for at least two hours.

MIX three or four times during the chilling period.

SERVE on bibb lettuce or romaine.

GARNISH as your fancy dictates, possible with a black olive on top and a tomato wedge on the side.

Serves four rather generously and very deliciously.


I would never have read this recipe and hastened to try it, which have been my loss. Rather, I had it at a
favorite gourmet friend's home and she had culled it from her favorite gourmet magazine, which attributed it to a restaurant in County Tipperary.

Herein, it is repeated verbatim with the exception of my gourmet friend's addition finely diced onion. And I omit the peas. Do with it what you will -- but I guarantee it will be put in your "winning recipe" file.

In a bowl combine 3 cups cold cooked rice, 1/2 cup each of cooked peas and cooked corn, 1/3 cup sultana raisins,, 1/4 cup each of diced green and sweet red peppers, 4 slices of bacon sauteed until crisp, drained and crumpled, salt and pepper to taste.

Here's where you decide if you want to add 1/8 cup of finely diced red onion. I do!

Toss the mixture with 1/3 cup olive oil and chill the salad for at least 12 hours.


There I was on a lazy Sunday afternoon, again at Betsy's, alternately watching the water skiers, the pond lapping at the shore, the distance mountains, Brandy (her Schnauzer) sniffing for frogs and reading the Sunday paper food pages.

This recipe caught my eye and I'm glad it did. I've made often since.The first time I was quite alone and ate THE WHOLE THING! (Not all at once, of course!)
  • 1 package (6 oz.) orange-flavored gelatin
  • 1 can (medium) crushed pineapple
  • 1/2 large container non-dairy frozen whipping cream
Drain pineapple and add enough water to make two cups.

Heat to a boil and pour over gelatin. Add crushed pineapple.

When it cools add cream and put into a mold.

Chill until hard.