THE OLD-TIME BRAND-NAME COOKBOOK by Bunny Crumpacker

For cookbook enthusiasts, this terrific offering titled THE OLD-TIME BRAND-NAME COOKBOOK by Bunny Crumpacker is a fun-filled cookbook celebrating recipes from another era.
“Take a tantalizing journey back in time to an era when good food evoked coziness, friendliness, and Home Sweet Home. invite Smithmark, the publishers—but wait til you see the illustrations.

The author’s recipe pamphlet collection began when she discovered a cache in a junk shop in Vermont. The pamphlets were beautiful to look at and, as Ms. Crumpacker discovered, fun to cook from. Since then she has added to her collection, finding pamphlets in thrift stores and at yard sales, used book stores and book fairs.

Those of us who have been collecting cookbooks for any length of time – and this includes recipe pamphlets published by food manufacturers—have long known what Ms. Crumpacker discovered: food manufacturer recipe booklets, which have evolved from the freebie booklets that came with every stove and refrigerator to the present day booklets, which, although inexpensive, are no longer free. I started my cookbook collection of booklets when I was a teenager and free booklets were offered on the backs of cereal boxes, cocoa tins and baking powder tins. Ten penny postcards filled the family mailbox with free recipe booklets and I was hooked—although I didn’t start seriously collecting cookbooks until I was in my mid-twenties and decided I wanted to find more cookbooks.

Several times over the decades, I have been gifted with boxes of booklets that a friend or relative found at a yard sale—but Bunny Crumpacker has my collection beat, hands down. Her collection of over 300 recipe pamphlets published between 1875 and 1945, some of which are featured in THE OLD-TIME BRAND-NAME COOKBOOK, are to die for.

“this delightful nostalgia-rich collection of recipes, anecdotes, advice and illustrations” claim the publishers, “hardens back to an era when families ate their meals together, refrigerators were a novelty and creating the perfect molded confection was a requisite of any dinner party…”

I am especially enchanted with the illustrations and recipes from “FAVORITE RECIPES OF THE MOVIE STARS” published in 1931 (and not in my collection of celebrity cookbooks, I am sorry to say). Check out Helen Twelvetree’s recipe for Wakimoli (sic) or perhaps Gary Cooper’s mother’s Buttermilk Griddle Cakes. Also included is George Burns and Gracie Allen’s recipe for Lamb Terrapin.

I was delighted to find a recipe called Hungarian Gulasch (sic) – as prepared by the Hungarian shepherds for it is very much like my grandmother’s goulash, containing only potatoes and tomatoes for vegetables.

(the downside to writing about food or recipes is that, invariably I have to stop typing and head out to the kitchen to start cooking.

Old time recipes, you may have discovered, are generally “from scratch” but the author has provided modern, updated instructions, where ever they are indicated.

You are sure to be charmed, as I was in the evolution of chili, in the chapter Titled “CHILI – AS IT WAS THEN”. Ms. Crumpacker’s recipe, taken from a Frigidaire booklet published in 1933, is simply a combination of ground beef, onion, catsup and kidney beans!

I would dearly love to see Ms. Crumpacker’s original pamphlet collection, but since I can’t, THE OLD-TIME BRAND-NAME COOKBOOK is the next best thing to being there.

You are sure to love THE OLD-TIME BRAND-NAME COOKBOOK. which artfully combines recipes and beautiful illustrations, many of which I have never seen before.

THE OLD-TIME BRAND-NAME COOKBOOK is available on Amazon.com starting at one cent for a pre-owned copy or new starting at $1.95.

While checking prices on Amazon.com I discovered there is a sequel to THE OLD-TIME BRAND-NAME COOKBOOK in Old Time Brand Name Desserts by Bunny Crumpacker, published in 2001.

Review by Sandra L4ee Smith

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3 responses to “THE OLD-TIME BRAND-NAME COOKBOOK by Bunny Crumpacker

  1. I love this book, Sandy! Unfortunately, Bunny Crumpacker died in July 2010. I wonder what happened to her collection?

  2. Hey! I know this is kinda off topic however , I’d figured I’d ask.

    Would you be interested in exchanging links or maybe guest writing a
    blog post or vice-versa? My blog covers a lot of the same topics as yours and I think we could greatly
    benefit from each other. If you might be interested feel free to send me an e-mail.
    I look forward to hearing from you! Excellent blog by the way!

    • Thanks for writing, Bunny. While I am interested in your proposal, I have been so sick since January – in the hospital almost 2 weeks – and still recuperating from kidney failure. But thanks for writing and maybe we can work out something in the future.

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