Cucumber Jelly and Cheese Sandwich (1932)

A Dollop of History

When I discovered this cucumber jelly recipe I knew I wouldn’t be able to live with myself if I didn’t also try the cheese sandwich. The sandwich falls outside the parameters of my gelatin blog, but I’ve tossed around the idea of posting it there anyway. After giving it some thought I decided its first home should be here.

These recipes come from a book called When You Entertain by Eleanor Lee Wright, published in 1932 by Wilson & Company. The entire digitized book is available on Archive.org. In addition to recipes, the book includes menus, table settings and tips for entertaining.

Some Historical Context

I am far from an expert on American food in the 1930’s, but generally speaking a housewife at that time would gravitate toward inexpensive yet attractive dishes. Table setting and food presentation were very important components of every meal. It was about this time…

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Hallowe’en Salad, a Retro Gelatin Treat

A Dollop of History

To celebrate Halloween, I thought I’d do something a bit more modern. This recipe is most likely from the 1930’s or 1940’s, though the image source (chronicallyvintage.com) suggests the possibility of it being even later. There are a few clues that indicate 1940’s or earlier: the font, ingredients, and the spelling of the word Hallowe’en.

halloweensaladFun fact: Spelling Halloween with the apostrophe is actually grammatically correct and was how children learned how to spell it in school. It is a shortened version of Hallows Eve. Over time, a grammatical error actually became the norm and now it is rare (and a little strange) to see it spelled with an apostrophe.

Before we get started with this molded monstrosity, let’s briefly talk history.

Gelatin and the Rise of Convenience Foods

Gelatin and jellied foods have existed for centuries, long before Jell-O patented its instant formula in 1897. Because of its convenience…

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