The vintage recipes in this series I discovered in cookbooks and recipe files that my wife inherited from her mother.  We lost her mother just over a year ago.  This past Christmas her Dad came to spend the holidays with us. One of the things he brought with him was Sandra’s cookbooks and recipe files. As we started looking through this treasure trove of recipes we discovered that these were not only from her mother.  In the file box, binders and the well-used cookbooks were her grandmother’s recipes also.  Many of these were cut from newspapers, copied from cookbooks, or highlighted as a favorite in the first edition of Betty Crocker’s Picture Cook Book, printed in1950.


This has turned out to be one of the best surprises we could get. Wendy’s grandmother, Grandma Helen,  was born in Kentucky.  After marrying and moving to South Flordia she opened the Tea House in Fort Lauderdale, Fl.  This small restaurant helped provide for her family.  

Key Lime Pies an Old Favorite

I picked this recipe to highlight first in this series because it is my personal favorites dessert. We discovered this recipe taped inside the front cover of the Betty Crocker Cookbook.  Grandma Helen cut this from a newspaper in the Fort Lauderdale area.  According to the cutout, this version of Key Lime Pie came from the Key West Women”s Club. 

By Averette at English Wikipedia, CC BY 3.0,

4 egg yolks

1 can of sweetened condensed milk

⅓ cup lime juice

1 baked and cooled 9-inch pie shell


Break egg yolks into a bowl and beat lightly. Add the can of condensed milk and beat until well blended. Slowly add the lime juice, beating the time. (Filling will thicken as the juice is added.) [Grandma Helen note:” add 1 cup of meringue to the filling makes it fluffy.”] Pour into baked and cooled pie shell.

To make the meringue, beat 4 egg whites and ¼ teaspoon cream of tartar to soft peaks; gradually add 8 tablespoons of sugar, beating to stiff peaks.  Spread over filling, sealing to pastry edges.  [Grandma Helen notes: ”Add 1 teaspoon corn starch to 3 egg whites for meringue for pie”.]

Bake in moderate oven (350 degrees) about 12 minutes or until peaks are golden. 


Grandma Helens Famous Strawberry Rhubarb Pie

By Jonathunder – Own work, GFDL 1.2,

Grandma Helen was most famous for her Strawberry Rhubarb Pie.  She adapted this from Betty Crocker’s Picture Cook Book.  Everyone looked forward to this at a summertime family gatherings.  

Begin by making the crust for 2 pies.  Line the pie pan with one and save the other for the cover.

To make the filling:

Mix together 1 and 1/2 cups of sugar,  6 Tbsp of flour and 2 cups of Rhubarb, and 2 cups of strawberries mix lightly. Pour the mixture into the pastry-lined pie pan.

Dot with 1 and 1/3 tbsp. of butter cut into squares.

Cover with top crust sprinkle with sugar and bake in a 425 degree (Hot) oven 40 to 50 minutes until the crust is nicely browned and juice begins to bubble through the slights.  Serve slightly warm.

I have more vintage recipes coming in this series, check back often. 

If these desserts sound good, check out dessert in El Salvador.

Photo by Dilyara Garifullina on Unsplash
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