A Sparkling Vintage Life

sunkist adThis odd-sounding recipe caught my eye in a 1929 copy of Modern Homemaking. As I read it over, it began sounding kind of nice–maybe as a dessert on a warm day, if we ever again experience warm days (she said in discouragement, gazing out the window at the chilly April rain). It’s certainly a simple enough dish to assemble.

The story accompanying the recipe says:

“Not many years ago the orange was rare enough to be a special treat–often used only in the toe of the Christmas stocking. Rapid transportation and modern methods of commercial refrigeration have transformed it from an occasional treat to a year-round daily food. Aside from the flavor and fragrance of the orange, which act favorably upon the appetite, it cleanses the body from clogging accumulation, provides vitamines (sic), natural fruit-sugars that are readily assimilated, vim-giving salts and in combination with the digestive juices–oranges make an alkaline reaction neutralizing acids formed by foods such as meat, fish, eggs, bread, and cereals.”

Sounds yummy, eh? The article continues:

“As a breakfast-fruit, whether eaten from the shell, sliced or served in the form of juice, the orange rates at the top. In both raw and cooked dishes, from soup through to desserts, the orange is a welcome ingredient. There is roast goose made tender and tasty with frequent bastings of orange juice. Oranges are used with vegetables–thin slices of sweet onion or crisp slices of cucumber nad slices of orange are good together for salad. So is cut-up orange and well drained canned tomato served with cooked salad dressing or mayonnaise into which is folded whipped cream and a little of the grated yellow rind of orange. Sweet potatoes mashed and seasoned with butter and salt, then whipped light with orange juice instead of milk, are good with bacon or ham or fried chicken for a supper dish. Cakes, pies, and puddings are all good made with oranges, but the best thing about this food, so rich in medicinal properties is that, lacking time or inclination to use oranges in made dishes, they can be served without any preparation. In buying citrus fruits, to get the best value for your money, they should be fairly heavy for their size.”

Orange Soup

1 quart boiling water
4 tablespoons cornstarch dissolved in a  little cold water
Speck salt
1 teaspoon grated yellow rind of orange
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup orange juice
1/2 cup lemon juice

Boil water, cornstarch, salt, rind, and sugar until  mixture is thick and clear. Cool, add fruit juices. Serve very cold garnished with whipped cream and candied orange peel, or with a slice of orange at each serving.