Homemade Treats

Having grown up in the 1930 and 40s, I was used to homemade food such as pancakes, bread and fresh-from-the-garden homemade soups. Nothing was prepared in cans from the grocery store that had sat on the shelves for months. The only thing spread on the garden was cow manure as a fertilizer. So here are some ideas to try from the 1940s and no doubt you will also save money on your groceries.

Basic Pancakes

1 cup white flour

1 egg

¾ cup of milk

2 tsp salt

2 tsp baking powder

⅛ tsp butter

1 tsp sugar


Mix salt, flour, baking powder and sugar together. Mix egg and milk together and then add dry ingredients. Finally add the butter. Spread shortening on the frying pan, heat and then pour the pancake mix into the frying pan. When bubbles start to form on the top turn the pancake over to cook until the bottom is brown.

Old Fashioned Applesauce Cake

¾ cup shortening

1 cup sugar

1-½ cups of hot applesauce (unsweetened)

2 tsp baking soda

2-½ cups basic white flour

1 tsp cinnamon

2 tsp nutmeg

1 cup raisins


Cream shortening and then add sugar followed with apple sauce mixed with soda. Sift in the flour and spices followed by the fruit. Bake at 350ºF for about 45 minutes.

Have a Date Bread

1 cup dates

¾ cup boiling water

1 tsp baking soda

⅔ cup brown sugar

1 egg, beaten

1 Tbsp butter

1 vanilla

1¾ cups white flour

1 tsp salt


Wash and de-stone dates and cut into small sections. Add soda and boiling water. Fully mix and cool slightly. Add the sugar, beaten egg, butter and vanilla. Followed by sifted flour and salt.

Place in a greased baking pan and bake at 350ºF for 40 to 50 minutes. This will be sufficient to fill to fill two 1-pound baking tins.

Old Fashioned Oatmeal Date Cookies

¾ cup shortening

1 cup brown sugar

1 egg, beaten

2 cups oatmeal

2 cups flour

½ tsp baking soda

1 tsp salt

3 tsp vanilla

¾ cup milk

Recipe for date paste: 1 lb dates, hot water to cover. De-stone dates, cover with hot water and set aside to soften for an hour. Then purée in a blender.


Cream shortening and sugar very gradually. Add egg, then the oatmeal and flour, baking soda and salt sifted together. Add vanilla, milk and take out onto floured board, roll until thin and cut with a floured cutter. Spread date paste on one cookie and place another cookie on top. Press edges down and

Bake at 350ºF eight to 10 minutes

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