Throwback Thursday – Retro Recipe 1910

I am the proud possessor of a first edition Boston Cooking School cookbook, written by Fannie Farmer. Fannie Farmer was the leading lady of kitchen and home efficiency. Thanks to her, recipes no longer state, “one teacup of sugar”, “butter lump the size of a walnut”, “one wineglass of sour milk”, etc.

In addition to their famous cookbooks, the Boston Cooking School also published a magazine six times a year. The August-September 1910 edition gives hints for “Prompting a Delicate Child to Eat”, “Automobile Luncheons” (quite a novelty and cutting edge!) with such dishes as Bishop’s Deviled Tongue Spread (Bishop’s was a brand of canned meats, not the actual tongue of a Bishop), Pickled Egg Salad, Hearts of Lettuce, celery hearts filled with cream cheese, Rusks, Rum Omelet, Blackberry Muffins, etc. The list of foods gives a nice snapshot into the food of America for that time. In the magazine were also advertisements for products still in use or long gone:  Junket, Huyler’s Metropolitan Cocoa, Fleischmann’s Yeast, Sno-white Blueing, Sauer’s Vanilla Extract (still made in Richmond, VA).  Short stories, poems, and household hints were scattered though out the magazine.

The Blackberry Muffins, from that edition of the magazine, has been made in our family since my great grandmother’s mother, as a young bride, was given a subscription to that magazine as a bridal gift. A rather extravagant gift at a dollar for a year’s subscription. The recipe still stands after over a hundred years. When blackberry season arrives, put on your sunbonnet and go pick a few buckets of blackberries. Save some out for these muffins. The recipe is copied from its page in the magazine.  The recipe says the Blackberry Muffins are very delicious – they are!  Slather with butter ad enjoy with a glass of cold milk or cup of coffee.

Blackberry Muffins
1 cup blackberries (blueberries are an excellent substitute)
1 cup warm milk
1 cake Fleischmann’s Yeast (modern – 1 pkg)
2 cups sifted flour
2 – 4 tablespoonfuls granulated sugar
1 tablespoonful butter, melted
¼ teaspoonful salt
1 well-beaten egg

Have milk lukewarm, dissolve yeast into it; then add sugar, butter, salt, egg well beaten; add flour gradually and beat thoroughly; cover; set aside to rise for one and one-half hours. Then stir in very lightly the cup of berries and put in well-greased muffin tins (modern change – use muffin liners). Let rise for twenty minutes. Bake twenty minutes in a moderate oven (350F). This makes one dozen. Takes about two and one-half hours. Should be eaten hot and are very delicious.


21 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Let's CUT the Crap!
    May 01, 2014 @ 10:35:20

    Not that I bake much anymore, I haven’t seen a recipe for muffins made with yeast. I must make these for my granddaughters. Hmm hmm, these sound good, and so easy.


    • kanzensakura
      May 01, 2014 @ 11:24:52

      The only thing is, most folks back then picked their own blackberries. They didn’t use the large, hybridized ones of today. Raspberries would work and so would blueberries. I’m lucky to have a wild area near me with acres of wild blackberry bushes and this is where I get mine from. They are good and easy. If you use fresh blueberries, depending on how sweet they are, you may or may not need to cut back on the sugar. That is one reason people will modernize or adjust these old recipes. Like the difference in the blackberries. I tried using frozen ones once. too watery. man, what a mess. My father made these once using fresh chopped peaches. Date: Thu, 1 May 2014 14:35:23 +0000 To:


      • Let's CUT the Crap!
        May 01, 2014 @ 12:10:18

        I had made up my mind to use blueberries. I’m more after the yeast dough which will have a different texture than most other made without yeast. 😀


        • kanzensakura
          May 01, 2014 @ 12:38:42

          it does indeed, and flavor. check it after about 45 minutes to see how it is doing. Modern yeast acts quickly. I think blueberries will be wonderful. That is my favorite muffin. When local fresh ones come on the market, I’ll grab some. Date: Thu, 1 May 2014 16:10:20 +0000 To:


          • Let's CUT the Crap!
            May 01, 2014 @ 15:55:10

            Will do. I love surprising the grand kids with GOOD eats. 🙂


            • kanzensakura
              May 01, 2014 @ 16:00:37

              I know you do! I love to cook for those I love as well. that’s why I stopped being a chef…I felt I couldn’t cook for those for whom I did not care about. I trained as a chef and was employed as such in both New Orleans and DC. But I just felt wrong. Now I only cook for those I love, with love! it is the best way to cook. Date: Thu, 1 May 2014 19:55:11 +0000 To:


              • Let's CUT the Crap!
                May 01, 2014 @ 16:14:34

                Aren’t you full of wonderful and exotic surprises. A chef!
                I know what you mean about cooking with love. I like to watch eyes light up with pleasure too. 🙂


                • kanzensakura
                  May 01, 2014 @ 16:40:46

                  That is the best part – seeing those eyes light up and knowing I have brought happiness. It is why I enjoy food so much, not just the preparation, but the history, the physical work of it, the giving of that happiness and love. I don’t care if it is a peanut butter sandwich – if it is made and given with love, that is the important part of it. Yes, on my about page, there may be some surprises you may not have found. And as of 03/13, I am now a retired engineer. Starting back to school 05/16 in pharmacy. I like to do like a crab and shed my current shell for a new one. I seem to do it every 20 years….this shell took23 years to shed, so I have to make up for lost time! Date: Thu, 1 May 2014 20:14:35 +0000 To:


  2. kanzensakura
    May 01, 2014 @ 21:30:46

    I know. I’m just restless, LOL


  3. FlaHam
    May 02, 2014 @ 13:24:36

    Kanzen, You do realize that I gain a pound for each 250 words you write, Lord have Mercy on me smiling. My grandmother used to force me to go into the fields to help her pick wild black and blue berries, and she would make the most wonderful clobblers from hem. She actually used a wood burning oven to cook her pies, cakes, and clobblers. Thinking about those deserts and your muffins make me drool. Take care, Bill.


    • kanzensakura
      May 02, 2014 @ 16:42:04

      Blueberries are a good substitute for the blackberries. My grandmother used to make this thing called Berry Roll -with whatever berries were in season. She’d make up biscuit dough, but not as tight as regular biscuits – push it into a rectangle and put dabs of butter all over, then a good sprinkle of sugar and then several cups of fruit scattered. She’d roll into a pinwheel and then cut about every 1 1/2 inches, put into a deep baking pan, dab with more butter, pour over water to just about 1/4 inch or so and sprinkle with more sugar, put into her woodstove and bake A couple of times she would spoon the juice over until the dough was done. man, was that good. I think my favorite version was with strawberries! I might have to make one of those soon, now that you have me remembering Berry Roll. Take care of yourself and be a happy Dough Boy. I’ll be a happy beach ball. Date: Fri, 2 May 2014 17:24:39 +0000 To:


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