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Twenty-Five Cent Dinners for Families of Six

Juliet Corson

Book Overview: 

Juliet Corson has put together a few books on economic housekeeping, and this is a fine example. Almost 150 years after publication (1878), it has become quite impossible to feed anyone on 25 cents, but the principles on how to cook economically have not changed much. In any case, modern readers can still enjoy the recipes Ms Corson has compiled, and learn from her introductory notes.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .Boiling and Stewing.—Boiling food slowly, or stewing it gently, saves all its goodness. After the pot once boils you cannot make its contents cook any faster if you have fire enough under it to run a steam engine; so save your fuel, and add it to the fire, little by little, only enough at a time to keep the pot boiling. Remember, if you boil meat hard and fast it will be tough and tasteless, and most of its goodness will go up the chimney, or out of the window, with the steam. Boil the meat gently, and keep it covered close to save the steam; it will condense on the inside of the cover, and fall back in drops of moisture upon the meat.

The following table shows how much is wasted in the different ways of cooking we have just spoken of. Four pounds of beef waste in boiling or stewing, about one pound of substance, but you have it all in the broth if you have kept the pot covered tightly; in baking one pound and a quarter is almost entirely lost unless you hav. . . Read More

Community Reviews

This is quite an old cookbook, but the idea of thrift still is relevant today. I've bookmarked a few recipes to try. Some dishes I would never make - mutton, or a whole sheep's head, for example, but it's interesting to read about.


Ne of the things I like about these vintage books is: There are no shortcuts.
Of course we cannot make 25 cent meals but we can make quality ones. I got this book because I wanted bean recipes, I discovered more. I am excited! I want a print copy of this treasure.

A fun read only

I knew it wasn't realistic to apply these recipes to today but I thought I might glean something. But no really this is a straight forward manual for the times it was written in. So while interesting it doesn't give advice for today in any way.


This is not a recipe book, but more on the knowledge for ingredients. Its nice to know the structure of each popular ingredients out there.

An awesome, archaic look at old-timey housewifery, with an eye to frugality and a few recipes that look damn hard to convert to modern measurement.

It was really cool to read old recipes where people used every part of the animal. I'd love to try some of the less "exotic" recipes.

Mildly interesting book of old time recipes, none of whiich I am planning to attempt.

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