Thursday, February 24, 2011

The Best of All Possible Worlds.

Some historians say that the best time of all – by which I assume they meant the most fun time - to be alive was between the two world wars, assuming one was sufficiently flush to be unaffected by the Great Depression and Prohibition of course.

The best of all possible worlds then, would surely have been aboard ship on a voyage to somewhere (who cares where?) in that hopeful time at the beginning of the 1920’s. The Great War had just ended, the Roaring Twenties was just beginning, and the nasty reality of the Great Depression was yet to spoil the dream.

If you were lucky enough to still be able to afford ocean travel and were aboard the SS Sonoma of the Oceanic Steamship Company, on February 24th 1929, here is what you would have had for dinner in second class.

Second Cabin Dinner.

Chow Chow Pickles
Puree of Split Pea & Sippets
Baked Flounder Fine Herb Sauce
Haricot of Mutton
Ribs of Beef Spanish
Leg of Mutton & Jelly
Mashed Potatoes Boiled Onions Boiled Potatoes

Sago Custard Vanilla Sauce
Water Ice Pie
Fruit in Season
Coffee      Cheese      Crackers     Tea

For today’s recipe, I give you a very dainty dish indeed, from a very aristocratic cookery book author, Lady Harriet Elizabeth St.Clair.

Sago Custard Puddings.
Take a spoonful and a half of sago, and put it into a saucepan with as much water as will cover it, a drop of cinnamon, three blades of mace, and some lemon-peel, and set it on to boil. When you find it clear and thoroughly done, add to it half a pint of new milk, and keep stirring it over the fire. When it becomes thick take it off, remove the seasoning, beat the yolks of four and the white of one egg well up with half a pint of cream; sweeten to taste; then take the milk and sago boiling hot, and mix well with the cream and eggs. Put it into small moulds, and bake or steam for ten minutes. Tapioca may be done in the same way.
Dainty Dishes (1866)

Quotation for the Day.

Who discovered we could get milk from cows, and what did he think he was doing at the time?
Billy Connolly.

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