Tuesday, April 27, 2010
By the book
I have about fifty cookbooks of all kinds, but my all-time favorites remain the charity cookbooks. These interesting compendia of recipes are typically put together by women's organizations, such as the Junior League, various hospital committees, and other women's service groups.
Main Line Classics is now in its umpteenth printing and is, I must say, still my go-to choice for easy and yummy cooking. It is still produced by the Saturday Club in Wayne, PA here on Philadelphia's Main Line. I love the fact that each recipe is attributed in the old style. Its newer, spiffier version is lovely to look at and very glam, but for me lacks the charm of the precursor. I also love the sweet salute to the train stations that gave the Main Line its name.
Another cookbook I adore-but for entirely different reasons--is Charleston Receipts. First published in 1950 by the Junior League of Charleston, it is a monument not only to old-time Southern cooking, but to a lost way of life and graciousness as well. (Many recipes actually begin with a first step that includes instructing one's help to set up the ingredients.)
And the use of "receipts" instead of "recipes" is also an anachronistic reference that is just delightful.
So popular, it was re-edited and updated
I find this foreword extraordinary. Within the first few paragraphs, the "dilemma" of the post-war homemaker is revealed: where is all the kitchen help I grew up with, who didn't need written "receipts?" The solution? A handy cookbook designed for the new realities of cooking for one's husband and family.
My cousin had a hand in putting CR together. Anne Montague--from whom our dear dog's name is derived--apparently tied on a starched linen apron and got down to it, contributing many recipes herself. (Never under her maiden name, of course--but as Mrs. Arthur J. Stoney.)
Flashback to the Bicentennial: Trinity Presbyterian in Berwyn cooks
For Memorial Sloan Kettering...a gorgeous book with lovely recipes...
The swankier, 21st-century Main Line
Benefitting Episcopal Academy
Just used two of these books this past weekend for our son's Eagle Court of Honor party for 50...
- Anne Lake
- Living well is the best revenge...and a choice we make every day. Join me as I celebrate the bounty of beauty in all its forms: fashion, homestyle, accessories and everyday richness...as I juggle the roles of Mommy, wife, daughter, dog mommy, creative director, Zumba instructor, volunteer...all with more than a passing glance backward to an old-school, classic time when style was a way of life