I’ve had this little McCall’s magazine for about a year now. I really enjoy looking at magazines in general, and getting my hands on an old magazine is even better.
McCall’s might be a pattern maker, but I think the company really likes to think about food, too. There’s at least a dozen recipe pages written for the magazine, and then another dozen or so advertisements that contain recipes one way or another.
I really think this recipe for a Coconut Cake sounds excellent. And the drawing is really charming.
Coconut Cake (3 eggs)
2 cups sifted Swans Down Cake flour
2 teaspoons Calumet Baking Powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup butter or other shortening
1 cup sugar
3 eggs, unbeaten
1/3 cup milk
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 can (1 1/2 cups) Baker’s Coconut, Southern Style
Sift flour once, measure, add baking powder and salt, and sift together three times. Cream butter throughly, add sugar gradually and cream after each addition. Add flour alternately with milk, a small amount at a time. Beat well after each addition. Add vanilla. Bake in two greased 9-inch layer pans, 25 to 30 minutes in moderate oven (375°F). Spread boiled frosting between layers and on top and side of cake. Sprinkle thickly with coconut while frosting is still soft. Double the recipe for three 10-inch layers.
This advertisement for Crisco has five different recipes (all made with Crisco!), but what really caught my attention is the descriptions before each recipe.
Try this on your husband
There’s at least one man in every family who thinks it isn’t masculine to like sweets. But a cake like this flavored with coffee and put together with Crisco, whose own pure flavor allows the taste of the coffee to predominate, is truly a “man’s cake”.
Perhaps Ramses II ate some of these
“The charming art of cake baking probably originated with the Egyptians,” says an old cook book called “The Pantropheon or the History of Food.” Gorgeously sweet and filled with spices were these Egyptian cakes. Can’t you imagine an old Egyptian cook puzzling out the hieroglyphs which meant Yum Yum Gems? And then hunting around for the spiciest spices, the sweetest honey and a delicate shortening. No hunting around for a delicate shortening now–for your corner grocer has Crisco with its fresh, sweet flavor, sealed in an air-tight can, a fresher, sweeter flavor than you ever imagined a shortening could have!
The copy writers for this Crisco advertisement probably had a lot of fun. And the ad worked on me! I stopped and read when I saw “Perhaps Ramses II ate some of these.”
This is a less appetising advertisement. Asparagus is one of my favorite vegetables, but canned asparagus doesn’t look too good. But then maybe I’m just stuck on how good the cakes look.
Where is the magical place where you can mail in for the recipe booklet 83 years later? Even though I’d most likely have thousands of dollars spent on mail in dress patterns, I sure would like to have some vintage recipe booklets.
1 1/4 cups sifted confectioner’s sugar
1/4 cup Eagle Brand Condensed Milk
Blend sifted confectioner’s sugar gradually into Condensed Milk, using a fork. During the mixing add desired flavoring—Vanilla, maple, peppermint, wintergreen, orange, coffee, cinnamon, etc.
From this Basic Fondant make Cream Mints…Nut Bonbons…French Fruit Slices…Stuffed Dates…Stuffed Prunes…Coconut Patties…Maple Wafers…and many others.
And, to round it all off, a Campbell’s soup advertisement. The yellow sun ray-esque background against the red tomato is really striking.