Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Ivy's Fried Rice

Putting leftovers to good use since 600 AD!

These last few months have felt like an actual whirlwind in our apartment. Between planning our upcoming vow renewal, business at work, trying to get some academic articles written and published, adopting a cat, and keeping up with the blog, I feel like I haven't really had a chance to catch my breath since... maybe February? 

Because of that, it's been very difficult to plan and prep meals, which means anything easy and quick (while still healthy - ish - and filling) has been a huge asset. I'm hopeful that once things settle down again, I'll have more time and energy to devote to non blog related meals, but until then, it's been fun to experiment with some traditional go to's that are easy to make, full of vegetables, and a way to get rid of leftovers that's been used for generations. 

I'm speaking about fried rice, of course!

Friday, July 5, 2019

Addy's Strawberry Nut Loaf

A treat Addy, Abraham Lincoln, and Jane Austen might have enjoyed!

In my experience, one of the many benefits of going to grad school is making a whole bunch of fun new friends who share similar dorky interests to you. These friends are then always willing to hook you up with cool things they discover that might catch your eye, leading to a whole lot of fun collaboration on hobby projects as well as actual academic research. 

Take today's post for example: this delicious tea bread comes from a cookbook I was gifted by a good buddy of mine for my birthday... two whole years ago. Sorry it took me so long to try something out, Ashlee! I promise it was worth the wait. Read on to discover the inspiration behind this perfect summer tea treat and the cookbook that clued me into it.

Sunday, June 30, 2019

Melody's Luau Lulu

A super unusual sandwich from 1960!

This last post in my Hawaii inspired series is one of the most unusual sandwiches I've ever eaten. I know the ingredients are probably going to be a bit of a hard sell to some readers - even I was pretty dubious about how it would actually taste! - but trust me, this treat from 1960 is definitely not to be missed. 

But I can't take credit for discovering this unicorn of a sandwich. I was first introduced to it by reading The Mid-Century Menu, one of my favorite historic cooking blogs. If you aren't reading Retro Ruth's stuff, you're really missing out! Check out her post about the Luau Lulu, and read on to see how our version turned out!

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Maryellen's Pineapple Jello Rings & Piña Colada Molded Salad

Two gelatin desserts for the price of one!

It just wouldn't be a trip through the 20th Century without at least one recipe spotlighting the ubiquitous gelatin, right? Well, I've got two for you today: one straight out of the 1950's, and one that's a little more modern. Ironically, I liked the older recipe significantly better than the modern one, enough that I'm planning on bringing it along to my friend's 1970's themed house warming party in a few weeks. Can you guess which one is which? 

Both recipes also feature canned pineapple, and while that treat had been enjoyed by Americans since the turn of the 20th Century when James Dole opened his pineapple plantation on Oahu, it really found new life in the 1950's and 60's. Read on to see how this fruity treat could be adapted to pretty much anything your heart desired.

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

A Trip to the Mid-Atlantic Air Museum's WWII Weekend

Three whole days of living history, air shows, and flea markets!

Three years ago, when my sister was graduating from the University of Pittsburgh, I got my paws on a flyer for an event: World War II Weekend at the Mid-Atlantic Air Museum in Reading, Pennsylvania. The flyer boasted that it was a three day event filled with an air show, rides in vintage warbirds, reenactors, a swing dance, and much, much more. 

Anyone who's been reading this blog for more than a few weeks - or who knows me in real life! - knows that my favorite era to study and teach others about is World War II, so of course I immediately wanted to go. Unfortunately, Reading is just far enough away from my parent's house, DC, and where I now live post-grad school that it was always a hard sell to folks to hike out that way with me. Fortunately, my wife is also very into World War II history and doesn't mind long car rides, so this year, we packed up our bags (and Molly and Nanea) to go check out the 29th Annual WWII Weekend!

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Molly's Hawaiian Banana Bread

A banana bread recipe from 1943!

It's been a while since we turned to the book that inspired many a childhood fantasy of fancy themed parties with historically accurate games, crafts and food: The American Girl Party Book was something I frequently flipped through to admire all the fun party ideas as a kiddo. My mom and grandma helped organize and throw my really amazing ninth birthday party with lots of ideas straight from this book, and it's still provided a lot of inspiration for posts for the blog... as well as future themed parties once I finally have a living space (and paycheck) big enough to entertain and decorate the way I'd like to. 

One of the Molly parties is themed around Hawaii, offering suggestions for making your own leis, tropical themed drinks and snacks, as well as invitations and games. Just as Samantha's Nutting Party or Felicity's Twelfth Night Party are representative of actual parties people in the past celebrated, Molly's Hawaiian themed party is wholly authentic to the 1940's, and features recipes that are just as "faux Hawaii" as the recipes marketed in home magazines, advertisements, and cookbooks of the period were. Read on to find out more about this trend!

Saturday, June 8, 2019

Nanea's Pineapple Nut Cake

Authentically Hawaiian, starring some of the most famous imports to the islands!

If you guessed pineapple after reading my last post, you'd be right! There was no way to avoid the pineapple in this little month long feature I'm running, and really, why would you want to? They're delicious, and extremely versatile in dessert, drinks, and much more. They're a great source of Vitamin C, although if you eat too much of it in one sitting, you can end up burning your mouth thanks to the bromelain enzyme, which digests protein. 

That's right: your pineapple is taking a bite out of you while you eat it! 

This very dense cake also guest stars a second famous "Hawaiian" ingredient, and it comes from my favorite Hawaiian cookbook. I bet some of my readers remember which one that is! Read on to find out how to make it yourself.