Weekend Cooking is a meme hosted by Beth Fish Reads. It is so loosely structured that even a non-cooking curmudgeon like me can join in. If you'd like to see what others are contributing, click on the Weekend Cooking graphic at the top of this post to be taken to the heart of the action.
I'm still having fun reading my grandmother's "go to" book on cooking and housewifery, the 1927 edition of Everyday Foods. I imagine I'll be sharing other goodies from the book, but this weekend I wanted to provide a glimpse into typical holiday menus from that era.
Here's a scan directly from the book showing an elaborate Thanksgiving menu, and a simple Thanksgiving dinner menu:
The menus contain items that I'd never heard of before, and the authors go on to say
The Christmas menu is not unlike that of Thanksgiving. Turkey is usually the main course, but roast goose also has a time-honored place on the Christmas dinner table. Sometimes a whole roast pig with a red apple in its mouth may be the main dish for the Christmas dinner.
Plum pudding with hard sauce, or fruit cake frequently displaces the pumpkin or mince pie. Ice cream is also a favorite dessert. Candies of all kinds are in high favor, and much is made of appropriate table decorations.
How do these menus compare to your holiday menus? Are they very similar or very different? This book places emphasis on table linens and decorations, but the people in my family were all farm folk who placed more importance on the food on the table than the decorations. Table linens only get dirty and have to be washed. Table decorations mean less room for food. Now that I have my own house, I tend to blend the two as much as possible: lots of food on a table set with linens and special china, glassware, flatware and serving pieces. What are some of the holiday meal traditions that have been handed down in your own families?