Monday, February 20, 2012

Life This Week: February 20, 1939

Publicity photo from Classic Hollywood Biographies

This week's Movie of the Week is Made For Each Other, starring James Stewart and Carole Lombard. Seems like it should be a comedy, right? Well, there are funny moments, but Made For Each Other is a serious movie. I found it a bit weepy and melodramatic but enjoyable. Favorite philosophical quote: "Never let the seeds stop you from enjoying the watermelon." If you also happen to be a cash-strapped young married like Steward and Lombard in this film, you may appreciate the fact that it's free from Internet Archive.

 Dromedary ad from Google Books

"When your love life turns a trifle sour; when something turns up to turn that sunny guy of yours into a grouch, take a tip from your great-great-grandmother's book. Try tempting that man of yours with his great-great granddaddy's fatal weakness--hot gingerbread and lots of it."

Two weeks ago, we had a recipe from Martha Washington and now we've got one from George Washington's mother. I guess old George had a sweet tooth--which might be why he needed dentures...

"By special permission of the Daughters of the American Revolution, Dromedary Gingerbread Mix is made from the famous 200-year-old private recipe of George Washington's mother. Tonight, give your man a treat he will long remember. Give him this rich, spicy gingerbread that Washington and his officers yearned for with such ravenous delight."

I've never seen it at the store (but then again, I can't remember the last time I bought a baking mix), but Dromedary still exists, should you choose to use it. However, I made my Gingerbread from scratch.


1/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup turbinado sugar
1 egg
2/3 cup molasses
1 1/2 cups cake flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon ginger
1 teaspoon cinnamon
3/4 cup plain yogurt*

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Line an 8"-square baking tin with parchment and set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the egg, then the molasses. Beat in 1/2 cup of the flour along with the salt, soda and spices then beat in 1/3 of the yogurt. Keep adding flour and yogurt alternately, beating after each addition.

Pour batter into prepared tin and bake in the middle of the oven 40 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean. Serve warm or at room temperature.

12-16 slices

Adapted from "Gingerbread" in All About Home Baking (New York: General Foods Corporation, 1933), 114.


*The original recipe calls for sour milk or buttermilk. I had a 6-ounce container of plain whole-milk yogurt and used that instead.

I know you're dying to see a photo of me at my typewriter. Good news! Ton at I Dream Lo-Tech held a virtual "type-in." I've been named an honorary typospherian. Even if you don't give a damn about a photo of me and my Corona Standard, you should go check out Ton's blog, especially if you like typewriters or mid-century furnishings. He's made some great finds!


  1. Great photo of you! I love gingerbread any time of year. I love your yogurt addition.

  2. Huh. Well, I do love a historical dish! I love making recipes that are so old. I heard once that THomas Jefferson's favorite food was macaroni and cheese but...did they have macaroni then? lol....

  3. Love the typewriter pic! I just got another (new to me) vintage typewriter from here at Triangle. It's so cool - it types really large letters. Looking at your gingerbread picture - I could smell it cooking. Isn't that funny? We have gingerbread often enough that I think it was a natural reaction!

  4. Lauren, many thanks again for sharing your photo with us and for your kind words about my blog!
    You have such positive energy, it was really great to have you join us in the Typosphere. And yes, you also have one handsome typewriter!


Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.