- Historic Mid-West Farm Recipes Illustration

by The Jones Girls

Historic American Mid-West Farm Recipes

Magic Noodles
Fried Pumpkin Blossoms
Indiana Butterscotch Pie
Rhubarb Pie
July 4th Baked Beans
Corn Bread
Seasoned Sausage

Most families have special recipes they save for certain holidays, as well as recipes that can make any day a holiday! In my family, our special recipes are collected in our copy of We Love to Cook, a cookbook written by my Mom and her sisters and brothers.

As our holiday gift to you, we have shared 7 recipes from the We Love to Cook book; one recipe from "Mother" (Grandma) and one created by each of her six children. We hope your family will enjoy these historic farm dishes, as we have, for generations.


Magic Noodles

4th of July Baked Beans

Fried Pumpkin Blossoms

To Season Sausage

Corn Bread

Rhubarb Pie

Indiana Butterscotch Pie


Rhubarb Pie   From: We Love to Cook
2 eggs juice of 1/2 lemon rhubarb 1 to 1&1/2 cups sugar 3 tablespoons flour nutmeg, Mix and bake in unbaked pieshell

Fried Pumpkin Blossoms
From: We Love to Cook
Ingredients Instructions
"It is best to pick the blossoms while they are young and tender, but since this will stop the growth of a pumpkin on that vine, the farmer - whose field you are taking the blossoms from - is apt to object. Better ask first or grow your own pumpkins!" Pick the blossoms when open, look over and wash. Soak in salt water from 2 to 4 hours. Take out of water and drain. Put lard in skillet, flour the blossoms and fry to a crisp brown.

Indiana Butterscotch Pie From: We Love to Cook

1 & 1/2 cup brown sugar 4 tablespoons butter 1/3 cup flour 1/2 teaspoon salt 2 egg yolks 2 cups milk

Directions: Melt brown sugar and butter in saucepan.
Add rest of ingredients. Cook until thick in double boiler.
Put in baked crust. Top with Meringue (for company)
Meringue recipe: 2 egg whites
pinch salt
2 tablespoons conf. sugar
dash vanilla

Corn Bread From: We Love to Cook

2 eggs beaten
1 1/2 cup buttermilk
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup oil
1 cup corn meal
2 cups flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon soda
1 teaspoon salt

To Season Sausage From: We Love to Cook

15 pounds meat 2 level dessert spoons pepper 2 level dessert spoons sage 10 level dessert spoons salt (smoked.)
If the salt used is not smoked, use 3 spoons of pepper and sage and 15 spoons salt.

July 4th Baked Beans From: We Love to Cook

Ingredients Instructions
1 pound navy beans
2 strips bacon
tomato juice
tomato catsup
2-3 tablespoons brown sugar
chopped onion
Soak beans overnight
Add salt and bacon.
Simmer till done (1 hour).
Add tomatoes, sugar, onions.

Bake slowly about 2 hours

Magic Noodles From: We Love to Cook 3 minutes to make; 10 minutes to cook!

I'll give you the recipe in the book, and then I'll share with you what it means! This is a very special recipe. On holidays, when everyone collected at the farm, the word would go out that Grandma was about to cut noodles. Kids, grandkids and great-grandkids would drop their quarrels and games and pour into the kitchen to watch. Today, my kids pour in to watch me. It's a good thing, too, because this is a very fast recipe. You make the broth ahead of time, but it's simple, of course, and it freezes well. The actual noodles take 3 minutes to make, 10 minutes to cook.

Here's the recipe in the book
1 quart chicken and beef broth + 1 cup
2 eggs
1 teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons cream
1/2 teaspoon salt
Flour to mix into ball. Roll-cut thin. Cook 10 minutes in boiling broth.

(Here's how it works...)

The broth: Boil some chicken and beef in water. (Use both meats. If you don't use both, you won't get magic noodles). Remove meat from broth. Freeze until needed. When ready to make Magic Noodles, put broth on to boil.

Flour to mix into ball: This process takes about a minute. Fill a mixing bowl half full of flour. With a spoon, make a well in the center of the bowl (an indentation in the flour, about the size of a fist) Dump your four ingredients (everything except the broth) in this well. (I substitute evaporated milk for cream.) With a fork, stir gently (don't beat), picking up flour as you go from the outside walls of the well. Keep stirring until you've picked up enough flour to be able to remove the dough, from the well of flour, even though it may be in pieces and still sticky. Drop dough on floured board. (I dump flour on wax paper on my countertop, and make them there.) Gently knead a few times to add more flour (using the left-over flour from the mixing bowl, if you wish) until you can roll the dough into a ball that doesn't stick to your fingers.

Roll-cut thin: Roll the dough out with a floured rolling pin. Sprinkle flour all over the rolled out dough. Starting at one side, roll up the dough, like a tube. Cut the dough (like cutting bread) into very thin slices with a knife dipped in flour. Shake noodles lightly to remove excess flour. (I put the noodles in a strainer and shake). Dump noodles into boiling broth. (Immediately turn the burner temperature down a bit, or the broth will boil over.)

The cutting process takes me about three minutes to make enough noodles for 4 people. It took Grandma about 20 seconds to cut enough noodles for 40-50 people, which is why everyone gathered to watch. She would pick up a big knife - there was a blur - and the noodles were cut. Amazing!

Cook ten minutes - and eat. Unless you've made Magic Noodles, you've never tasted anything like this. You can add chicken or beef or vegetables, but Magic Noodles, as directed, really do make a meal.

Why do we call them Magic Noodles? Partly, I suppose, because you watch them being made. But mostly, I think, because eating them makes you feel so good. There is something comforting about Magic Noodles. Perhaps they really are mixed with .... magic!


Thanks for visiting! Have a great year!
Lin and Don Donn