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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Mother and I found a few more recipes, a 1936 cookbook and a 5 year diary...

I remember my Great Aunt Dorothy Block.  She visited Grandma Adeline and Grandpa Elvin in Washington State once when I was eight years old and Mom and I were there visiting.  She was such a nice lady!  Mother says that one of her favorite things to eat was 

Aunt Dorothy's Graham Cracker Roll.
1 lb. graham crackers
1 lb. walnuts
1 lb. dates
1 lb. marshmallows
1 pint of heavy cream

Roll crackers fine, reserving six crackers.  Chop dates and nuts.  Quarter the marshmallows.
Mix cracker crumbs, nuts, dates, marshmallows and cream.  Mold into a loaf.
Roll the loaf in the crumbs of the remaining six graham crackers reserved.
Chill 24 hours.  
Serve in slices with whipped cream.

Dorothy Block

The Household Searchlight Recipe Book, 1936
published in the USA
Grandma Maggie Block (Mrs. Otto Block)

Grandma Block's things - there might be a few more recipes than I originally thought!

It cost 2 cents for Kraft to mail this to Grandma Block,
of course, at that time she was Mrs. Otto Block of Landa, North Dakota,
as ladies never used their own first names outside family and friends.

A much cherished Gibson Electric Refrigerator booklet with recipes

The Watkin's man always brought Mother (aged 5 at the time) a stick of gum when he came to visit Grandma Block.  Mother lived with Grandma and Grandpa Block on the farm as a young child.

One time, a parachute salesman came to the door instead.  My mother vividly recalls this because that salesman did not offer her a stick of gum or candy, much to her chagrin!
Read more about  & see what Grandma Block purchased with her egg money from the WWII parachute salesman here:
Grandma Block's Parachute Quilt

Betty Crocker in her heyday.

Mother reading her Grandmother Block's daily diary.

Grandma Block kept her diary faithfully each day.

Here's all the sordid details like how many eggs the chickens hatched that day and if there was enough sun to dry the clothes on the line.  Mother told me that every egg the hens laid was egg money for her Grandmother to keep and purchase cloth, embroidery thread, etc. with.  Egg money was usually the only cash a woman had in those days.

Times have changed, haven't they?

This historical journey is getting more and more interesting, not to mention tasty!


  1. If I had to rely on egg money, I for one would be out of luck! Love the history!

  2. You know, I don't know how she kept her hens laying in winter! I've never kept chickens, but can't imagine they'd be laying too many at -20 below!

  3. http://www.ehow.com/how_2324127_keep-chickens-laying-through-winterkeep-chickens-laying-through-winter.html I found a link from ehow to help answer the laying eggs in winter question, but the thing is, how'd they do it before electricty for false lights and before all that fancy, special feed?

  4. BTW, did you post the recipe for the Bit O' Chocolate Chiffon Cake?