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Gooseberry Meringue Pie

We had some gooseberry bushes down at the “80”, the pasture with the creek where we went fishing.  They were on the bluff above the creek.  I don’t remember us ever picking them and making something from them, but I wouldn’t have gone near anything made with gooseberries in it at that time in my life. However, as and adult I’ve tasted desserts with gooseberries in them and actually liked them.

Most people would be surprised to cut into a pie with meringue topping to find gooseberries under it. This Kitchen Klatter recipe uses canned gooseberries rather than fresh. It refers to the liquid drained from them as syrup, so if you used fresh gooseberries, I am assuming you would cook them first in maybe 1/2 cup water with 1/2 cup sugar, drain them and that’s your equivalent to the syrup from the can.  

Gooseberry Meringue Pie

We think that this is a scrumptious pie!  People who don’t like gooseberries or who say that they’re too sour and acid will ask for second helpings so if you’re tired of making the same old pies, we urge you to treat your family to this.

1 lb. can of gooseberries (2 cups)
1/2 cup water
1 cup sugar (scant)
1/8 tsp. salt
1/4 cup flour
3 well-beaten egg yolks
2 Tbls. melted butter
1/4 tsp. Kitchen-Klatter vanilla flavoring

Drain syrup from gooseberries and add 1/2 cup water.  Mix together sugar, salt, flour and add to liquid.  Stir in well-beaten egg yolks and melted butter.  Cook until thick.  Add vanilla flavoring.  Gently fold in gooseberries. When cool, turn into bake 9-inch pie shell.  Cover with meringue made by beating 3 egg whites until stiff; add 1/4 tsp. cream of tartar to egg whites before beating.  Gradually add 6 Tbls. sugar.  Spread over pie and bake in a 415 degree oven until nicely browned.

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Good Pie Crust

Here is another clipping that looks like it came from either Jessie Young’s Homemaker or Kitchen Klatter’s Newsletter. Perhaps this was worth considering because it uses pure leaf lard.  What’s that? It’s made from the fat lining the abdomen and kidneys in hogs. Well, in our house, we were probably working with the lard resulting from the last time we butchered hogs. In my day, we didn’t butcher at home any more, so the hog fat was likely rendered at the locker plant.  When we ran out, Mom bought lard and I’m remembering a green and white rectangular cardboard container that was on open shelves in the grocery store and not refrigerated. Whether it was “leaf lard” I don’t know, but Mom was probably on the look-out for it after clipping this recipe. 

Another interesting thing about this recipe is that the lard is not chilled.  In most recent pie recipes and advice that I find in cookbooks or the internet there is a lot of emphasis on having the fat and the liquids very cold.  Mom never told me that.  I wonder if it really makes a difference or not.

Good Pie Crust

For a one-crust pie
1 1/2 cups flour
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup pure leaf lard
2 1/2 Tblsp water

For a Two-crust Pie
2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
2/3 cup leaf lard
3 1/2 to 4 Tblsp water

Measure flour without sifting. Add salt and sift into mixing bowl.  Add lard (not chilled) and blend with pastry blender till mixture looks like coarse meal.  Sprinkle water over the surface of the flour and mix gently.  Dough will hold together, but will be dry enough to handle.

Shape portion to be tolled into a ball; place on lightly floured pastry cloth or board and roll lightly.  Fold and transfer to pan, pressing into place.  Bake single crusts at 425 degrees for 15 minutes.

Coffee Drops

I have a little extra time tonight so I turned to the third page.

Betty had more space to fill.  Later, though, three clippings were pasted on the page.  Saving space or paper or something.  I had to peel up a corner on one of them to see the temperature. The recipe has the bare minimum of what you need to know to put the cookies together but I’m betting that Betty copied the recipe as it was published in the Kitchen Klatter magazine.


Coffee Drops (Kitchen Klatter)

5 0r 6 dozen

1 cup soft shortening
2 cups brown sugar
2 eggs

Beat well, stir in:

1/2 cup cold coffee
3 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. salt
1 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2  tsp. vanilla flavoring

Chill dough 1 hr. Drop with a teaspoon on cookie sheet at 400 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes.

Brown Sugar Frosting

Betty had room to copy another recipe on this page.  This was also a Kitchen Klatter recipe.  We always had cream and butter available on the farm. I see it recommends this on a burnt sugar cake.  Mom used to make a raisin cake and this may have been the frosting on it sometimes.

Frosting (Kitchen Klatter)

2 cups brown sugar
1/2 cup sweet cream
1/4 lb. butter

Bring butter to boil – about 1 1/2 min.  Then add
1 tsp baking powder

Pour this solution over above and start beating at once.  Add:

1 tsp vanilla

Very smooth, especially goon on burnt sugar cake.

Oatmeal Cookies (Kitchen Klatter)

Betty copied this recipe for Oatmeal Cookies

The second page has two recipes that are in my sister, Betty’s handwriting.  Kitchen Klatter was a radio program out of KMA radio in Shenandoah, Iowa.  I don’t really remember Mom listening to the Kitchen Klatter radio program, but I do recall her listening to Frank Field talk about gardening for the Earl May Seed Company.  Frank sounded old even then.

I don’t know whether the recipe Betty copied from was as incomplete as what is in the cookbook, but I wouldn’t be surprised.  We don’t know the oven temperature, any old nuts will do and everyone knows soda is baking soda.

Oatmeal Cookies (Kitchen Klatter)

1 cup shortening
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
3 well beaten eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp soda
3 cups oatmeal
1/2 cup nuts

Drop by spoonfuls on cooky sheet.  Bake about 12 min.

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