Tag Archives: Recipes
Godey’s Lady’s Book

Household Cleaning Recipes from Godey’s Lady’s Book

Godey’s Lady’s Book a magazine for American women published in Philadelphia. Godey’s was the most widely circulated magazine in the period before the Civil War. The magazine’s circulation over doubled from 70,000 in the 1840s to 150,000 in 1860.

Each issue contained poetry, articles, and engravings created by prominent writers and artists of the time. Sarah Josepha Hale (author of “Mary Had a Little Lamb”) was its editor from 1837 until 1877. Under her editorship the magazing and only published original American manuscripts.

Household Recipes

  • TO REMOVE WINE STAINS FROM LINEN — Rub the part on each side with yellow soap, and lay on it a thick mixture of starch; rub it well in, and expose it to the sun and air until the stain is removed. If in two or three days this is not the case, repeat the, process; when dry, sprinkle with a little water.
  • TO REMOVE INK STAINS — The moment the ink is spilt take a little milk and saturate the stain: soak it up with a rag, and apply a little more milk, rubbing it well in. In a few minutes the ink will be completely removed.

    • Method 1 — Mix equal quantities of fresh spirit of vitriol and lemon-juice in a bottle; shake well; wet the spots, and in a few minutes rub with a soft rag until they disappear. Another mode is to sponge the spots with a weak solution of muriatic acid or aquafortis.
    • Method 2 — If the marble be stained with oils, mix soft soap, fuller’s earth, and hot water into a paste; cover the spots with the paste, and let it dry on. The next day scour it off with soft or yellow soap.
    • Method 3 — Boil half, a pound of soft soap in a quart of water, very slowly, until the water is reduced to a pint. Apply this in the same manner as the preceding.
  • TO REMOVE STAINS OF BLOOD — An accidental prick of the finger frequently spoils the appearance of work; and, if for sale, decreases its value. Stains may be entirely obliterated from almost any substance by laying a thick coating of common starch over the place. The starch is to be mixed as if for the laundry, and laid on quite wet. The free and early application of a weak solution of; soda or potash, and the subsequent application of the solution of alum, is recommended.
  • LIQUID FOR REMOVING STAINS FROM LEATHER AND PARCHMENT — One dram of oxymuriate of potash, two ounces of distilled water. Mix these in a phial, and when the salt is dissolved, add two ounces of muriatic acid. Take in another phial three ounces of rectified spirits of wine, and half an ounce of essential oil of lemon. Shake these two ingredients well together; and immediately pour into a bottle of the proper size the contents of the two phials. Keep this liquid closely corked. It should be applied with a clean sponge and dried by a gentle heat. This preparation is excellent for boot tops. When it has been applied, as directed above, they may be polished with a brush in the usual way, and will appear like new leather.


Collection: Godey’s Lady’s Book
Publication: Godey’s Lady’s Book
Date: January, 1855
Title: Household Recipes
Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania


Molasses from Apples by Steaming

The following excellent method for making use of apples, for the two-fold purpose of obtaining molasses from them and converting the remainder into excellent feed for farm stock, has just been described to us by a friend.

The apples are placed in a hogshead made tight for the purpose, and subjected to the operation of steam.  The saccharine juice soon begins to ooze from them, and drops down to the bottom of the hogshead into the vessel, covering the bottom, placed there for the purpose, from which it passes off to proper receivers This juice is subsequently evaporated by boiling.

Sour apples only, have been experimented on in this way. The quantity of molasses obtained from them is ten gallons for every fifteen bushels of apples, or a gallon from a bushel and a half. This molasses differs from sweet apple molasses in possessing a peculiar tart flavor.

The apples remaining in the hogshead, being softened and well cooked, are mixed with bread or meal, and thus constitutes an excellent article of food for hogs and cattle.

Source: National Anti-Slavery Standard August 25, 1842


The Toilet – Recipes from Godey’s Lady’s Book

While Godey’s Lady’s Book avoided mentioning the Civil War while it was occurring,  the effects, including scarcities of some products, of the war on its readership is hinted at in some articles.

This February 1863 item provides instructions for making several women’s toiletries at home.

  • POMADE DIVINE — Take a pound and a half of beef marrow, put it into spring water ten days, changing the water twice each day; then drain it, put it into a pint of rose-water for twenty-four hours, and drain it in a cloth quite dry. Then add storax, benjamin, cypress, and orris, of each one and a half ounce, half an ounce of cinnamon, two drachms of cloves and nutmeg, all finely powdered and well mixed with the marrow. Then put it into a pewter vessel with a top that screws on, and over that a paste, that nothing may evaporate. Hang the vessel in a copper of boiling water, and let it boil two hours without ceasing; then put it through fine muslin into pots for keeping, and when cold cover it closely. If a pewter vessel is not at hand, a stone jar; with a paste between two bladders, will do.
    Another receipt — Take four pounds of mutton suet, one pound of white wax, an ounce and a half each of essence of bergamot and essence of lemon, and half an ounce each of oil of lavender and oil of origanum. Melt the suet, and when nearly cold stir in the other ingredients. The origanum has considerable power in stimulating the growth of the hair.
  • HONEY WATER — Take a pint of proof spirit, as above, and three drachms of essence of ambergris; shake them well daily.
  • HUNGARY WATER — To one pint of proof spirits of wine put an ounce of oil of rosemary, and two drachms of essence of ambergris; shake the bottle well several times, then let the cork remain out twenty-four hours. After a month, during which time shake it daily, put the water into small bottles.
  • COLD CREAM — Take a quarter of an ounce of white wax, and shred it into a basin with one ounce of almond oil. Place the basin by the fire till the wax is dissolved; then add very slowly one ounce of rose-water, little by little, and during this beat smartly with a fork, to make the water incorporate, and continue beating till it is accomplished; then pour it into jars for use.
    Another receipt — Takeof best lard one pound, spermaceti four ounces; melt the two together, and add one ounce of rose-water, beating it as above directed.
  • RED LIP SALVE — Take of white wax, four ounces; olive oil, four ounces; spermaceti, half an ounce; oil of lavender twenty drops; alkanet root, two ounces. Macerate the alkanet for three or four days in the olive oil; then strain and melt in it the wax and spermaceti; when nearly cold, add the oil of lavender, and stir it till quite firmly set.
  • LAVENDER WATER — Take a pint of proof spirit, as above, essential oil of lavender, one ounce; essence of ambergris, two drachms. Put all into a quart bottle, and shake it extremely well.


Plum Pudding

Plum Pudding and Other Recipes for Christmas

We give a number of receipts for puddings, pies, cakes, etc., that will be of great use to our lady friends during the Christmas holidays.


In the making of plum puddings, the following results of the examination and comparison of eighteen receipts may be usefully studied and applied:

Average of Eighteen Receipts for Plum Pudding

Fine flour, half a pound; bread-crumbs, quarter of a pound; suet, three quarters of a pound; eggs (yolk and white), four; mixed dried fruit, one pound and a half; mixed liquid, a third of a pint.


November Fashion Plate

Thanksgiving Recipes from Godey’s Lady’s Book

Thanksgiving Day, is a holiday celebrated in the United States on the fourth Thursday in November. It has officially been an annual tradition since 1863, when, during the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln proclaimed a national day of “Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the Heavens,” to be celebrated on Thursday, November 26. As a federal and popular holiday in the U.S., Thanksgiving is one of the major holidays of the year in America.

On October 6, 1941, both houses of the U.S. Congress passed a joint resolution fixing the traditional last-Thursday date for the holiday beginning in 1942. However, in December of that year the Senate passed an amendment to the resolution that split the difference by requiring that Thanksgiving be observed annually on the fourth Thursday of November, which was sometimes the last Thursday and sometimes (less frequently) the next to last.

Thanksgiving Receipts

Oyster Soup
Put two quarts of oysters, liquor and all,in a pan, set them on the stove to heat, but do not let them boil, or come very near to it. Now drain all the liquor into the soup kettle, and put in a pint of water and two quarts of new milk, half a pound of butter,and a little whole allspice and pepper. Have the oysters all this time where they will keep warm, and then salt to taste, just as you are ready to serve the soup, and put into the boiled up soup before the oysters are added. Salt should always be the last thing put into any soup, stew, or fricassee where milk is used, or it is apt to curdle. Oysters should never be boiled, but only scalded; boiling makes them tough and shrinks them up.