37 Vintage Recipes from the ’20s Worth Trying Today
Get a taste of the Roaring Twenties with these vintage recipes for oysters Rockefeller, finger sandwiches, strawberry Charlottes, and much more.
Every Christmas, my grandmother and I made divinity, just the two of us. I still make it every year. —Anne Clayborne, Walland, Tennessee
Deb’s Oysters Rockefeller
Every November, our family and friends gather at our home for our annual “Oyster Party.” My sons and some of their friends shuck between 300 and 400 oysters throughout the day and I prep, bake, and serve them to our guests. Forks are spread out over the platter and everyone just starts grabbing the baked oysters off the tray. The most important part of this recipe is the Hollandaise Sauce that is put on the top of the Rockefeller—this just makes it taste better than any others out there.—Deb Holt, Baltimore, Maryland. Also, try these delicious recipes like Grandma used to make.
Old-World Puff Pancake
My mom told me her mother-in-law showed her how to make this dish, which became popular during the Depression, on their “get acquainted” visit in 1927. At that time, cooks measured ingredients in pinches, dashes, and dibs. But through the years, accurate amounts were noted. My wife and I continue to enjoy this dish today, particularly for brunch. —Auton Miller, Piney Flats, Tennessee
Lovers of sweets and treats will get a kick out of these vintage Halloween photos.
Cranberry-Orange Roast Ducklings
I came up with this recipe a few years ago. The first time I served it, there wasn’t a speck of food left on the platter and I knew I had a winning recipe. —Gloria Warczak, Cedarburg, Wisconsin
State Fair Cream Puffs
The Wisconsin Bakers Association has served this cream puff recipe at our state fair since 1924. —Ruth Jungbluth, Dodgeville, Wisconsin. Use these secret pantry ingredients to make your recipes better.
Parsnip & Celery Root Bisque
Here’s a simple yet elegant soup for fall and winter. Everyone enjoys the smooth texture and earthy veggies. For a colorful garnish, sprinkle on chives and pomegranate seeds.—Merry Graham, Newhall, California
Slow-Cooked Chicken a La King
When I know I’ll be having a busy day with little time for cooking, I prepare this tasty main dish. Brimming with tender chicken and colorful vegetables, it smells so good while cooking. —Eleanor Mielke, Snohomish, Washington
Vanilla White Chocolate Mousse
I needed a quick dessert for my daughter’s bridal shower, and a co-worker gave me this mousse recipe. It’s so pretty with almonds and raspberries on top. —Marina Castle, Canyon Country, California
Simple Waldorf Salad
This is my go-to salad when I need a quick little something for a meal. When I want a sweeter taste, I use whipped cream instead of yogurt. —Wendy Masters, East Garafraxa, Ontario. You should know these absolutely essential recipes before you turn 35.
Old-Fashioned Butterscotch Cake with Penuche Frosting
My aunt, who was born in the 1920s, passed this recipe down to me. She made the cake from scratch from start to finish because she didn’t have modern amenities to help her in the kitchen. The penuche frosting goes with the cake nicely. —Beth Vorst, Columbus Grove, Ohio
Makeover Deviled Eggs
This updated version of a classic appetizer uses only half the egg yolks of the original recipe and calls for soft bread crumbs to help firm up the filling. We replaced the mayo with fat-free mayonnaise and reduced-fat sour cream. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
Chicken Salad Croissant Sandwiches
Parmesan cheese and dill make this the most incredible chicken salad I’ve ever tasted. For the no-cook version, use canned chicken. These sandwiches are a simple entree to serve at parties, showers, or picnics.—Jaclyn Bell, Logan, Utah
Fluffy Cranberry Mousse
This is a delicious and pretty salad for the holidays, but it’s so good that I serve it at other times, too. I got the recipe from a neighbor who had served it with a traditional turkey dinner. —Helen Clement, Hemet, California. You can’t get away with these cooking shortcuts, so don’t try.
The Ultimate Chicken Noodle Soup
My first Wisconsin winter was so cold, all I wanted to eat was homemade chicken noodle soup. Of all the chicken noodle soup recipes out there, this one is my favorite and is in heavy rotation from November to April. It has many incredibly devoted fans.—Gina Nistico, Denver, Colorado
Salmon Mousse Cups
I make these tempting little tarts frequently for parties. They disappear at an astonishing speed, so I usually double or triple the recipe. The salmon-cream cheese filling and flaky crust will melt in your mouth. —Fran Rowland, Phoenix, Arizona
Blackened Pork Caesar Salad
When I cook, the goal is to have enough leftovers for lunch the next day. This Caesar with pork has fantastic flavor even when the meat is chilled. —Penny Hedges, Dewdney, British Columbia
My family loves ice cream cake, so they were delighted when I first presented this dessert. It’s light, delicious and has a festive presentation. —Scarlett Elrod, Newman, Georgia. Follow these cooking tips that we learned from Grandma.
Summer Tea Sandwiches
These dainty finger sandwiches are perfect for casual picnics or luncheons. Tarragon-seasoned chicken complements cucumber and cantaloupe slices. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen
Hearty Manhattan Clam Chowder
This veggie-packed clam chowder is savory and satisfying. Butter up some crusty bread and you have yourself a complete meal. —Carol Bullick, Royersford, Pennsylvania
Warm Spiced Cider Punch
This is a nice warm-up punch. I like to serve it when there is a nip in the air. The aroma of the apple cider, orange juice, and spices is wonderful as the punch simmers in the slow cooker. —Susan Smith, Forest, Virginia. Avoid making these common kitchen mistakes.
Cheesy Cream of Asparagus Soup
Kids may not want to try a vegetable soup, but once they spoon up a mouthful of this cheesy variety, the flavor will keep them coming back for more. —Muriel Lerdal, Humboldt, Iowa
Finish things off with a bang with this colorful gelatin garnished with a chorus of fresh grapes. Chock-full of mandarin oranges and crushed pineapple, it’s so refreshing that guests won’t be able to refrain from seconds. —Taste of Home Test Kitchen, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
Smoky and sweet flavors come through in every bite of this Kentucky-style ham. Since I found this recipe, it’s the only ham I make. —Sue Schiller, Tomahawk, Wisconsin
Honey Whole Wheat Rolls
Most of the farmers in our area grow wheat, so this recipe definitely represents my region. I bake these rolls often, especially when I’m making soup or stew. —Celecia Stoup, Hobart, Oklahoma
Garden-Fresh Seafood Cocktail
For something cool on a hot day, we mix shrimp and crabmeat with crunchy veggies straight from the garden. Look for adobo seasoning in your grocery’s international section. —Teri Rasey, Cadillac, Michigan. These brilliant kitchen shortcuts will help you when cooking these delicious recipes.
Super Grilled Cheese Sandwiches
Heat up your indoor grill to make these ooey-gooey grilled cheese sandwich recipes. They’re delicious served with soup! —Debbie Murray, Fort Worth, Texas
My grandmother taught both me and my mom this appetizer recipe for stuffed celery. We always serve it at Christmas and Thanksgiving. The stuffing is so yummy that even if you don’t normally care for the ingredients on their own, you’ll love the end result. —Stacy Powell, Santa Fe, Texas
Authentic German Potato Salad
This authentic German potato salad recipe came from Speck’s Restaurant, which was a famous eating establishment in St. Louis from the 1920s through the ‘50s. I ate lunch there almost every day and always ordered the potato salad. When the owner learned I was getting married, he gave me the recipe as a wedding gift! —Violette Klevorn, Washington, Missouri
Strawberry Ladyfinger Icebox Cake
This cake is inventive and yet familiar. Be sure to use a springform pan; otherwise, you cannot invert the cake or remove it from the pan. If it breaks while you’re transferring the cake to the serving plate, just push it back together and press gently. —Stella Ohanian, Porter Ranch, California
Mom’s Favorite Olive Burgers
When she was in her 80s, my mom would reminisce about olive burgers at Coney Island. I used her instructions to make one and ended up pleasing both of us. —Lorraine Hickman, Lansing, Michigan.
Apple Cinnamon Jelly
I have made this for my five kids for their peanut butter sandwiches throughout all of their school years. I have made jars and jars of this wonderful jelly for gifts for teachers, neighbors, and relatives for Christmas. It’s easy, delicious and homemade—what’s not to love? Be prepared to have to make this jelly regularly once the kids get a taste of it! —Nancy Jenkins, Fullerton, California
Fruit molds are my specialty. This one, with its refreshing peach taste, makes a colorful salad or dessert. —Adeline Piscitelli, Sayreville, New Jersey
Spiced Devil’s Food Cake
One of my mom’s friends gave her this recipe when I was a child and it has been a family favorite ever since. When your “chocolate sweet tooth” acts up, this really hits the spot! —Linda Yeamans, Ashland, Oregon. Make sure to avoid these cooking mistakes that ruin your food.