Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Where to find 82 free recipe booklets

My correspondent (and friend) Joy has shared a link to an amazing *free* resource, the Nicole Di Bona Peterson Advertising Cookbook Collection at Duke University's Rubinstein Library. Some 82 vintage recipe booklets are included, and of course this one caught my eye with the pretty tea wares on the cover. And just what IS The Vital Question, you may ask? It is, according to the inside of the booklet, "a discussion of the food problem and its relation to health and happiness  –… including a comprehensive treatise on the principles of cookery … with practical and economical recipes for making simple, palatable and nutritious shredded wheat dishes." Recipes include such delicacies as Strawberries in Shredded Wheat Baskets and Oyster Shredded Wheat Patties.

Like World War II–era recipes? Then you may wish to check out War-Time Cook and Health Book, with recipes for foods such as Corn Custard, Soft Honey Cake, and Apple Brown Betty.

Perhaps one of the most tempting titles is Choice Recipes, which features chocolate and cocoa recipes by a "Miss Parloa," including Chocolate Walnut Wafers, Wellesley Loaf Cake, Baker's Chocolate "Divinity" (yes, Walter Baker and Co. is apparently that Baker's Chocolate), Marshmallow Fudge, Chocolate Cream Pie, and more.

I love old recipe booklets, and when I see a new source for treats that might work at the tea table, I am always inclined to share … as was Joy!


  1. I haven't had time to explore this collection yet, but I knew when I saw it that you'd be interested. I'm so glad you're enjoying it!

  2. Looks interesting. Thanks for sharing

  3. Thanks very much for the information! I really love old recipe booklets, too, so I'm sure I'll have fun with this.

  4. What fun old cookbooks. This reminded me of all the Christmases my mom made Divinity for her friends for gifts along with dates stuffed with walnuts and sprinkled with powder sugar.


Thanks so much for taking time to leave a comment! It makes my day to hear from readers!