Friday, September 25, 2009

Expanded reading list

I like understanding traditional ways of doing things (i.e. How did we survive before Wal-Mart?). I am also a very cheap bastard. These two aspects of my character are therefore delighted by Google Books where I can get very old instructional books for free.

1. Making the Farm Kitchen Pay (1914): My favorite section is the discussion of “putting down eggs” in which fresh eggs are preserved by soaking in silicate of soda. The fresh eggs will keep for 8 to 9 months. Seriously…I had no freaking clue that you could do this. The chapters for the book are as follows:
a. Dried vegetables and fruit
b. Salting down and pickling
c. Homemade vinegars
d. Homemade wines
e. Butchering time recipes
f. Potato ways
g. Vegetables and fruit
h. Breads and yeast

2. Successful Canning and Preserving (1917): Canning scares the crap out of me. Botulism is gonna get me! This text provides a wonderful overview of the development of canning. It is also a very interesting historical snapshot into 1917 America. I am not sure I would follow the canning recipes in this book…I suspect some of them would not be considered safe by current standards? Who the hell knows…I’ll get this figured out some day. Just not today.

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