Monday, July 10, 2006

The Stories and Poems of
Florence Edna Lusk

"If you can read you can do anything." - Florence Lusk

Stories and Poems

The Unforgettable Person In My Life
Untitled (Guitar)
Untitled (Strength)
Untitled (Cycles)
Untitled (Snake and Dove)
Bells are More than Bells
Untitled (Man)
Just a bit of Family History
Untitled (Life)
The Miracle of a Statue
Untitled (Rustle of Trees)
Untitled (Land)
Untitled (Tulip Tree)
Untitled (Where are my glasses?)
Untitled (Cloud)
Untitled (Girls and Boys)
Untitled (Time)
Untitled (Ego)
Untitled (Before Seven)
Untitled (Peace)
Untitled (Old woman)
Untitled (Five Old Ladies)
Untitled (Six Monuments)
Untitled (Old Woman in a Shoe)
Untitled (Steven's Flag)
Pumpkinville (song)

More Recipes

(Note: Titles in parenthesis to untitled stories and poems are
for identification purposes only)


I remember Grana at the store. The store was "Lusk's Delicatessen," where I grew up and where she cooked. Some of my happiest moments of childhood were spent listening to her tell stories of Kansas, Kinderhook and Illinois while she was mixing a big 50 pound tub of potato salad or cole slaw. To be honest, she didn't tell them often, certainly not as often as I would have liked. Growing up, we never knew much about our family history - it wasn't "talked about." Gathering information for this book has made me realize that the years have played tricks on my memory. Did she really tell me that her first home as a married woman was a hole in the ground on the plains of Kansas covered with boards? She called it a "dugout."
I do remember Grana writing poetry during the 1960's. She did it with the same casual air that she made a quilt or baked bread. There was an unspoken assumption that this was what people did. And like her quilting or baking, there was no pretense of being fancy. It was serviceable and good, but there was to be no question in anyone's mind that it was a quilt, bread or poem!

After Grana died, my aunt, Margy Honeck found the poems and gathered them together, making photocopies for us. They were hard to read, since the originals had been written in pencil. Last year several of us gathered in Kinderhook for my uncle Alfred's (Siani) funeral. My brother Steven and I decided to try and put the poems into a book. He typed the raw copy from her original writings. My sister Nancy, my parents and Aunt Margy donated several photographs. Cousin's Joe and Matt Grim have done the layout and the printing.

Our family was lucky to have Grana living with us in Brooklyn for all those years. Hopefully this book will bring her memories closer to those who were not able to be physically with her as often.

Robert Lusk
Kingston, New York
June 1995

We Grim kids didn’t live in the same house with Florence Lusk while we were growing up and we didn’t carry the Lusk name. In fact, we don’t really remember our grandmother as “Grana”, but rather more as “Grandma in Brooklyn.” Nevertheless, the Grims, Matt, Jo, Diane, and Phil, always felt very much a part of the Lusk clan. We are proud to be celebrating the life, writings, and memory of our grandmother with our large family of cousins.

For me, preparing this book has been quite a voyage of discovery. There are many facts here that I never knew and pictures I have never seen. I hope you have as much enjoyment reading this as Matt and I had putting it together.

Creating this book was a bit like assembling a jigsaw puzzle where all the pieces came from different corners of the United States. The Internet made it possible for Bob and Steven Lusk to transcribe Grana’s writings along with Bob’s biography of her and comments, and then to send them all to me via electronic mail. Matt scanned in all the photographs you see here and sent me the electronic versions. I took all the text and photographs and prepared the book on my Hewlett-Packard workstation. It is intriguing to observe the contrasts between Grana’s early years in Illinois and the high technology that is so commonplace today. The past may be an undiscovered country, but its inhabitants are a lot like us.

Joe Grim
Fort Collins, Colorado
July 1995


FLORENCE EDNA LUSK was born Florence Whitlock to James Whitlock and Effie Jane Cotter Whitlock on September 23, 1894, in a log cabin in Carrollton, Illinois. Carrollton is the county seat of Greene County, Illinois. It was a small town when Grana was growing up.

She describes herself as an independent sort, always in trouble with her skirt tails flying while running and riding roller skates. She gave the middle name "Edna" to herself later in life and always signed her name "Florence E. Lusk"

She had St. Vitus Dance which is caused by the strep germ, and was sent to live with her Aunt May for awhile. Her Aunt had a boarding home and Grana worked waiting on tables. From Carrollton, Illinois they move to nearby Plains, Kansas. Then her parents moved back to Hutchinson. Her father was variously a barber, prison warden, and taproom owner. He taught inmates how to cut hair in the State Prison. Her family were strict Methodists, but they also went to the Baptist church on Sunday evenings.

She attended school up to the 9th grade and then taught school herself for a year. She never went to high school. There was no high school in her town and she would have had to move to another town if she wanted to attend high school. Her parents didn't want her to move, so at the age of 14 she took a job as a typesetter for the town newspaper.
From Hutchinson the family moved again to Plains, Kansas. As a young woman, she was tall, thin, and athletic. She rode a horse and always won prizes in the sack race. She also whistled and yodeled.

She was married at age 18 on November 1912 to John Niles Lusk Jr. in Plains, Kansas. They had six children: John Niles III(Jack), Katherine Virginia (Kay V.), Paul James, George Vincent, Myrna Jane, and Margy Carol. Jack was born a year after they were married. They lived in Liberal, Kansas where John Lusk Sr., her father in law, was a broom corn farmer. Liberal is near Oklahoma and 100 miles from Dodge City. It claimed to be "tougher than Dodge City". Later her father in law was foreman of XI ("ex eye") Ranch on the Cimmaron river, east of Liberal. The house they lived in was called figure 4. It was 20 miles from anyplace else and Grana hated it. She said she wished it would burn down and it did. She lost her engagement ring and her husbands’ new Stetson hat. Kay V. was born in 1915, Paul in 1916 and George in 1919.

In 1923 they moved to Kinderhook, New York, the home of MartinVan Buren. They lived in a large house called the Gables, built in 1741. There were apple orchards and the Lusk's had their own private speakeasy on the grounds. Grana frequently played cards in Lindewald, the Martin Van Buren mansion nearby.

In 1927 they moved back to Liberal. They owned property on Kansas Ave and Lincoln Ave. They once bought a house that was almost a county seat and had several bullet holes. They renovated and moved it 20 miles. Myrna was born in 1932. In 1933 they moved back to Kinderhook. There was a lot of back and forth movement between New York and Kansas during this time.

In 1934 she wound up, minus her husband, but with her children in New York City. She was undernourished, emotionally distraught and had a "touch" of tuberculosis. Margy was born in 1935. They moved to 474-74th Street, Brooklyn in 1935, and then to 9420 Wogan Terrace on February 25, 1938, (George's birthday). The owner of the house in the Terrace, Mr. Tate, didn't want to rent to just anyone. The whole family had to be interviewed by him and his wife before they could move in. When her boys went to war, the landlord lowered the rent by $5 a soldier. All of the children worked.

Margy describes this time:

"Delicious odors of cooking, starched white curtains at the windows, clean sheets, hot water, hugs and kisses all around and lots of parties and laughter. Mom sewed all the time. She made dresses for Myrna and I with huge, full skirts which needed hours of patient hemming.

She always did her chores in the morning, kept a clean and shiny house, took an afternoon bath and was dressed to the teeth for the evening hours with earrings, hose and high heels."

Myrna and Margy went to Fontbonne Hall, an exclusive girls school. As all the children grew older, they married and moved to different parts of the USA, except Paul who stayed on with his family. Grana helped him and his wife Agnes raise seven more children in the same house.

Not too long after her son Paul opened Lusk's Delicatessen (November 1950), she started cooking in the store. She was regionally famous for her apple pies and potato salad. She arose early to cook at the store and then around 3:00 would leave to play cards with the women from church. She usually won. She had a garden in the back yard of the Delicatessen in Brooklyn. She said "I always like to have a garden".

Florence Edna Lusk died July of 1978 from a stroke and is buried in Kinderhook, New York.


The Unforgettable Person In My Life

(It is unsure whether this story is about her paternal grandfather John Whitlock or her maternal grandfather Charles Snowden. Whoever he was he lost a leg in the Civil War. William Jennings Bryan, mentioned in this story ran against William McKinley in 1898 when Grana was four years old. She told a story once about how somebody had paid her to campaign for William McKinley on the front lawn. Not knowing any different she did so, but was severely chastised by her parents who apparently were of the opposite political persuasion. McKinley won!)
My grandfather was a tall square built man. He was a Civil War veteran. He never went to school but learned to read from the Bible and to figure from it's pages at the end of the corn rows while resting the oxen. He drew a pension - lived on ten acres of land in southern Ill. The place has two wells with chains and an oaken bucket. There was an ash hopper kept filled with wood ashes. A spigot drained the lye from the ash and the lye was used to break the water for washing clothes.

The laundry was done on Monday morning before time for the train to pull thru bellowing smoke. The sheets must be kept white and all things were ironed, even socks.

My grandfather raised a garden, had chickens - the land had berry bushes of all kinds - peach, cherry, apple and pear trees. He tended them to get the best fruit. He knew herbs - sour dock, dande lions and lambs quarter was good to cook and eat. Catnip was good to make tea for babies with colic. Pressed onion with sugar was good for colds. Goose grease to rub on for a chest cold. Salt was good to kill weeds. Cloves were good to sweeten the breath and always before going to church everyone had a clove popped into his mouth. He said simple grace. It was "Thank thee Lord" each meal before anyone took a bite of food. He had a long white beard which I loved to comb and braid. He was a patient man.

His parents built a log cabin from the woods. My father was born in it and so was I. He offered it to my father but my father said "No", it wasn't worth his time. The town of Franklin Ill. still stands and all are dead but me. My memories are good ones for my Grandfather was a good man and he taught me many fine things that few children ever get from a grandfather. He was a church going man. His wife a spicy little woman and when she sounded off too much for him, he would say "tut, tut, Becky that's enough". He was a Democrat and his last trip out of the house was to see William Jennings Brian. He always read the Commoner. His flag always hung out on every national day. He was born Nov. 12, 1832 - dies Nov. 20, 1906

Untitled (Guitar)
(A story about me and my brother George. I'm afraid it was a rather idyllic vision of my musical life - Robert Lusk)

Young Clay wanted a guitar for his 10th birthday. His mother decided to buy one but not to spend very much money until he decided to really play it. She made arrangements with a teacher. Four lessons and he was finished with the guitar. he looked at it with pure hate in his eyes.

One day his brother Don came into the room and asked Clay what he would take in trade for the thing. It was decided on a ball and a knife. Don took his new possession and rubbed his gentle hands over it. He tuned it as best he could as he had never known any music training. He strummed and sang - day and night made no difference to him. The house shook with his sounds. Father and Mother would threaten to break it if he didn't stop it.

Time passed, Don haunted coffee shops where people played their music. He asked questions. He used any money to buy a better instrument. He would trade one for another and give some extra cash.

Time passed and Uncle Sam called Don. He left his old guitar at home and went to Germany. While there he pursued his quest for the stringed instrument. Before he came home he spent his money for a good guitar and when he arrived it slung over his shoulder. He pursued his quest for more knowledge of the music - the strings - the tuning the polishing and buffing.

After a year or so he decided to go to college. He rounded up a few boys to teach so he could make a few dollars for spending plus pay bills for school. By this time he made a tool bench to mend and repair stringed instruments. He made a lyre, first a small one, then a bigger one. He picked up a banjo - a violin and a ukulele. His classes increased in number. Women came to learn and he begun to feel pushed for time. Coffee houses wanted him. He taught a friend to play with him. They learned to sing in harmony. They entertained where ever they were. Finally the college asked him to teach a class in guitar for credit. This is the story of one boy that pursued a whim and made it pay off. He never had a lesson but sought all the people that give him a hint of any thing they knew. He plied it all and what he will do with it now, only time will tell.
F.W.L. his grandmother.

As of today Nov 22, 1977, he is still teaching and playing for square dances. He hopefully will make music in a big way and I hope he does. Anything you want bad enough you must finally get.

Untitled (Strength)

I am strong the young man said
I can do anything
I will walk with the lame
I will feed the hungry
I will lead the blind
I will give drink to the thirsty
I will comfort the lonely
I will smooth the way for all things
Years pass by
The young man is old and tired
No one to walk with me
No one to feed me
No one to lead me
No one to give me a drink
No one to comfort me
But faith will smooth the way for me
I have done my best
Time passes
The step falters
All is dark
Lips are parched
No food is needed
Tis the end of the young
grown old and weak

Untitled (Cycles)

The music was glorious
The food exotic
The gowns beautiful
The company charming
The room perfect
All of it man made

The sky is blue
the grass is green
the trees graceful
The birds song divine
All things wrought by nature

Man can strive to outdo nature
Nature doesn't strive
It simply comes alive in spring
Sleeps in the winter
and the cycle goes on infinitum

Untitled (Snake and Dove)

The rattle snake and dove, both things of beauty. The rattle snake slithers along the ground hisses and coils to strike at anything near by. He loves no one and no one loves him.
The dove waddles along pecking her food and noodling her head from side to side. She lifts her plump body into the air and soars along gracefully then lands to preen herself. She coos a gentle sound and love abounds for her.

Bells are More than Bells

Bells ring out to call you to worship
They call the children to school
They toll for a death of someone
They chime for a happy event
They ring for a meal to be served
The bell by the side of a bed of pain rings
with hope that someone will hear
The bell in the lighthouse sounds for danger ahead
The sleigh bell jingles on the harness
as the sleigh glides along
The fire bell rings to warn of destruction
The telephone bell rings from distance far and near
Oh bells are bells and they sound so clear
and each in its way is a part of life

Untitled (Man)

The man had money
He bought whisky
instead of honey
It made him stumble
when he walked
It made him
mumble when he talked
It made him feel
ten feet tall
But he had to balance
to avoid a fall
His sight was bleary
for he couldn't see clearly
Oh man in your vanity
where is your sanity

Just a bit of Family History

As a child I played with my grandmother's sister's children. There was an old brick yard and the kilns were still in use. They used straw pack the brick to cure it slowly. My father's people owned the first brick yard in southern Ill.

My Grandmother had a brother that lived in Texas. She could not write so she would tell me "get your tablet and pencil so you can write to Mike for me". She would take her finger and run it along the page and say "write this". From 8 years to 12 years I wrote her letters. In the meantime her brother's wife was struck by lightning and died. She was hoeing in the garden with her daughter Edna. Edna put the fire out on her mother's clothing. Mike had started to build a house for her. He had the frame work up but never put another nail in it and dared any one else to. There was a little boy Brady and he was very fond of his mother. After her death he refused to eat - just cried and wondered around until he died. There were four older children but none of them could do any thing about his grief. Mike lived into his late eighties. He knew a lot of western history. He had a pair of buffalo bones and could rattle them to any tune. He gave the land for Folene, Texas, and the cemetery holds his family and him. He went west at 16 years of age and lived and died there.

Untitled (Life)

I was young when I married. I read books of love and devotion and that life would be like that. Instead there was hard work with no reward. There was pain and children and miscarriages and no comfort was there. There was quarrels and every few years a new move to uproot what ever life you had made. There were accusations that were untrue but no one to defend you. Time passed by. I was tired and sometimes ill. The man I thought would be true and kind decided on someone young. I let it all pass, took my children and made a new life. It was good and strong and healthy. I am glad I had the strength to carry on alone except for the children. They were and are wonderful. The dream was lost but life must go on.

The Miracle of a Statue

{Names in parentheses are added and were the names of her four oldest children)

The family was separated. The father had found a younger girl. The mother was forty and pregnant. Three children (Jack, Virginia, George) were in the city. One (Paul) was in the country. The mother and a little one in the west. Two of the children in the city
went to work everyday. The gave the brother money for lunch each day.

They lived in a dark and gloomy basement. One day Jeff (George) went out to get his lunch but instead of lunch bought a statue of the bleeding heart (The Sacred Heart of Jesus Statue) for $.50. He brought it back home and set it in the light.

Some how the whole place came alive. The mother and child came one night. The boy in the country came and the family - all but the father were there. The statue looked so pure and white in that dark basement. The family lived and flourished and the statue is still in the family but broken in half.

Untitled (Rustle of Trees)

Oh for the rustle of trees
and the hum of the birds and bees,
For the patter of the rain on my window pane
to drowned out the noise of the plane

The sound of the Juke box
with the awful mixture of people and fox,
It is a bain to the hearing
of the downfall that's nearing

The senses are dulled
and thinking is mulled
In the raucous transcending
without any ending
Maybe time will lead us to peace
all the garbled noises will cease
and the rustle of trees
and the hum of the birds and bees
will once again increase

Untitled (Land)

When I was quite young
My grandfather said to me
There is land beyond the sea
Where people who are good will go by and by

Being to young to understand
I wondered how there could be a land
Beside the one on which I could stand

The sky was all blue and white
and this land was dark and tight
The years pass by and the sky is the same

This land is the earth by name
The sky is still blue and white
and my earth is still dark and tight

Untitled (Tulip Tree)

(This tree stood near the back of our store in Brooklyn where my
grandmother cooked. It was very, very tall and straight.)

I stand by my window

a spoon in one hand

a mixing bowl in the other

I see a brick building with railings all around.

To keep people out or in, I know not which.

I look across two fences or more and see a tree, tall, majestic,
and grand. It sways in the breeze and tosses in a high wind. I guess
this tree is about 200 ft tall. They tell me it is a tulip tree.
No matter what ever it's name, I love to look at it each day
and hope it will be there when I am gone. When my spoon is
dropped and my bowl is broken.

Untitled (Where are My Glasses?)

"Where are my glasses?"
the old lady said.
I always kept them beside my bed
But her faith she kept
as she turned on her side and slept

The Pastor came to call
They were glad to see him
One and All
I will read you a verse
After we have had time to converse

He picked up the good book
and what to his surprise
He found the glasses for her eyes
Seven years had past
since she saw the glasses last
The Bible lay in it's silent place
As the family went on it's pace.
But time takes care of everything
Even as the bell tolls and children sing

Untitled (Cloud)

A cloud is a beautiful thing
It floats thru the air with a lilting swing
You can make of it an image
a lad, a baby of any age

When the cloud is dark and fierce
your calm is changed to fears
But clouds pass into space
Then you can put on a happy face

Untitled (Time)

Time what are you?
We cannot see you
cannot touch you
But you plague us
always - running - speeding
racing, hurrying - never returning - always coming -
you push us - shove us - nag us-
pull us to something - some where
Who can tell?

Untitled (Girls and Boys)

Little girls are a lovely thing
as they bounce and play on a swing
They are a cute little flirt
as they wink and flip their skirt

But dear God
give us some little boys
with dirty hands
and funny toys

We need them all
both large and small
boys and girls
with straight hair
and curls

Untitled (Ego)

Ego, what a little word
But it is only a bubble
to deflate or inflate.
Everyone has ego of some degree
Even me.

Untitled (Before Seven)

I hear the breeze so soft and cool
It makes little ripples on a pool
I wonder how wise, was God
when he made green grass grow on dark sod

I hear the voice of the birds as they sing
I see great beauty in many a thing
I wonder when is heaven
I am sure it must be in the morning before seven.

Untitled (Peace)

They tell me of a place paved in gold
Where nothing is bought
and nothing is sold
But all is calm and serene
For people are borne on a bright shiny beam

This place is hard to get to
For only a chosen few
can make their way thru life
For minds are filled with to much strife

If clouds were always blue
and there was nothing to do
But sit quietly by
and wait in the groove where they lie

Untitled (Old woman)

Old woman what have you here
These are my treasures from over the year
All these things are that of the past
and I want them with me to the last

Old woman where will you be
when life's troubles break furiously
I cannot tell you that young man
But I will do the best I can
For there is many a trial along the way
And many a pleasure in each day
So when the road is dark and dreary
What matter if I don't see clearly

Untitled (Five Old Ladies)

Five Old Ladies sitting in a row
One said "I must go"
Then there were four.

Four Old Ladies left in the row
One got sore feet
and then there were three

Three Old Ladies sitting side by side
One said "I can't see you"
and then there were two

Two Old Ladies sitting in the pew
One said "I don't like you"
Then there was one

One sad lady left all alone
She froze up like stone
then there was none

Untitled (Six Monuments)
(Her six children, John, Virginia, Paul, George, Margy and Myrna)

Six monuments I have given to the world. Not carved of marble or stone or wood. When first they were placed in my hands, they were a wiggling wailing piece of humanity. Today they stand on a pedestal. The pedestal is mine alone. The monuments each have names, not one of renown or fame. I cannot reclaim or yet buy them back again. I can only look in awe and wonder and say "See what God hath helped me do." "Me and the world"

Untitled (Old Woman in a Shoe)

I could be like the old woman in a shoe
But I am not
Because I know what to do.
I would give you
a bright shiny coin
and skies that are always blue
and say my dear
This is what I wish for you

Untitled (Steven's Flag)
I planted a flag in the ground
and patted the earth all around
I watered and tended with care
In hopes my flag would stay there

But along came the rain and poured down
Then the wind whipped it around
Believe it or not my flag stood the test
It is the one flag I love the best


(Grana learned this as a child in Franklin, Illinois. It was collected July 10, 1978 by her daughter, Margy Honeck shortly before Grana's death.)

There is a house in Pumpkinville
Fourteen stories high
Every room within that house
was filled with pumpkin pie.

Run along home, run along home
And don't forget the way
Run along home with the two bright eyes
And don't forget the way

Big white house and nobody living in it
We'll move in and take it over
And fetch some clover
Then we will be living in it


Grana freely admitted that she couldn't cook or sew when she got married. But her cooking got to be so good that ranch hands would go out of their way to apply to their ranch for work. Years later in the Deli, people would travel great distances to get some of "Mrs. Lusk's Potato Salad". A local deli owner offered her $25.00 for the recipe (at a time when $25.00 meant something.) For 30 years she wrestled huge pots of potatoes and cabbage, making in an average week 50 lbs of potato salad, 25 lbs of cole slaw, 25 lbs of macaroni salad, 50 lbs of other assorted salads, 10 Roast Beefs, 5 turkeys, 50 apple pies, 10 peach or cherry pies, 50 oatmeal cookies, 6 pound cakes, and various chocolate cakes, cup cakes, meat cakes, fish cakes, .... and it never stopped.

Potato Salad
(Grana would make Potato salad 50 lbs at a time. This is the recipe for the "German Potato Salad". The "American" just had mayonnaise added.)

Cook 8 lbs. small potatoes with skins
Peel, cool and slice thin
Grate one large onion
Add onion and 1 raw beaten egg to solution ( we don't do the egg anymore for health reasons)

Solution :

1 cup white vinegar (not Heinz)
1 1/2 cups water
2 tablespoons of salt
1 teaspoon celery salt
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1 cup sugar

Bring solution to boil just enough to disolve sugar

3 lb Version

3 lb small potatoes, cooked, peeled, cooled and sliced thin
1 onion grated
Add solution
1/3 cup of sugar
1/3 cup of white vinegar
2/3 cup of water
1 teaspoon of celery salt
1 teaspoon of dry mustard
2 teaspoons of salt

Marinate overnight. Add Mayo or vegetable oil and parsley

Raisin Cake
(She called this her "Poor Man's Cake", because she said it could be made without eggs or milk, which was not always available during the depression. She added eggs when she made it at the store so it would stay fresh longer.)

Cook 1 lb. or raisins and 6 cups of water, until water is half

Let cool

2 cups of sugar
4 cups of flour
2 teaspoons of baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 eggs
1 teaspoon of cinnamon
1 cup of shortening (she used Crisco)
Add raisin mixture

Bake 1 hour at 350 degrees in a flat cake pan.

Apple Coffee Cake

Apple Coffee Cake was a speciality Margy Honeck learned from
her mother. It is an easy recipe and very moist.

Cream 2 sticks margarine, 2 cups sugar and 3 eggs. Sift together 3 cups flour and 4 teaspoons baking powder and add to the creamed mixture alternately with 1 cup orange juice and 1/2 cup milk. Blend in 1 cup canned sliced apples.

Put in a 13-inch rectangular pan and bake at 350 degrees F. for 45 minutes. Sprinkle with a mixture of sugar and cinnamon while slightly warm.

Other Recipes

At one point I asked Grana to write down some of her recipes for me. She wrote them in a brown notebook. Over the years, I tried some of the recipes, but with mixed success. She never used measuring spoons, just a pinch of this kitchen spoon or a coffee cup of that. Also, she was doing commercial cooking in large quantities. Reducing recipes is always tricky. Please adjust these recipes as your experience tells you. Also, please add any relevant recipes, stories, memories, etc.


Sift together:
2 cups flour
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon baking soda
2 rounded teaspoons baking powder

Mix 2 tablespoons of Crisco into dry ingredients
Add 1 cup of buttermilk
Stir into a ball (do not beat)
Roll out and cut with biscuit cutter
Bake at 400˚ until brown
Makes between 10 and 12 biscuits

Oatmeal Cookies

Mix together:
1 lb Oleo Margarine
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup white sugar
3 ½ cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder

6 eggs
2 cups oatmeal
½ cup nut meats
1 tablespoon vanilla
½ teaspoon cinnamon

Drop from spoon onto cookie sheet
Bake at 350˚ for 15 minutes or until brown
Makes between 55 and 60 cookies

Devil’s Food Cake

Mix together:
1 ½ cups sugar
1 ½ cups flour
½ cup cocoa
1 ½ teaspoons soda
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
½ cup oil
1 cup buttermilk
2 eggs

Bake at 350˚ for 30-35 minutes
Makes 2 layers or 1 flat 12” by 14”

Rice Pudding

Cook in a large kettle or a double boiler for 1 hour:

1 quart of milk 1 cup of rice Mix and pour into kettle: 4 eggs yolks 1 quart milk
2/3 cup of sugar
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
Cook stirring constantly over medium heat until it coats a wooden spoon. Do not boil. Put in a baking dish and top with merangue made from egg whites.

Bake at 350 until light brown (15-20 minutes)

Merangue -
4 egg whites
1/2 teaspoon of cream of tartar
1/2 sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
Using an electric beater, beat egg whites and tartaruntil frothy. Gradually add sugar and vanilla

Roast Beef

(In the deli, we always got our roast beef and other meats from Kettle’s Butcher Shop across the street. We all agreed it was the best meat in the world)

Place beef on a grate in a pan. Beef fat should be on top, and the beef should be tied with butcher string.

Sprinkle with course grained Kosher salt.

Cook at 400˚ For 4 lb Roast beef, allow 20 minutes for 1st lb., and 15 minutes for each succeeding lb. for rare. 20 minutes if medium rare.

Banana Bread

Mix well:
3 dark, ripe bananas
2 cups flour
Scant touch of salt
Scant touch of soda
1 cup of sugar
1 egg
¼ lb. of shortening
Pour into greased loaf pan
Bake at 350˚ for 1 hour

Makes one loaf

Apple cake

Mix and pour into pan:
2 cups sugar
2 sticks margarine
3 eggs
3 cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
¾ cup orange juice
½ cup milk


Mix and sprinkle over top of cake
¼ cup sugar
¼ teaspoon cinnamon

Bake 1 hour at 350˚

Meat Loaf

Mix and form into loaf:
1 lb chopped mear
1 slice of bread, soaked in milk
1 small onion (chopped)
1 pinch of salt
Sprinkle with flour
Add 1 small can of tomatoes
Bake at 350˚ for ½ hour

White Cake

1 ½ cups sugar
¾ cups shortening
2 ½ cups flour
4 teaspoons baking powder
2 eggs
Salt and vanilla to taste
1 cup milk

Pour into greased pans,
Bake at 350˚ for 30-40 minutes


1 lb of “10X” (confectioners) sugar
2 tablespoons of Crisco
2 tablespoons flour
Salt and vanilla to taste
4 tablespoons warm water

Beat with a large spoon until well mixed

Cup Cakes

1 cup sugar
½ cup of butter
3 eggs
2/3 cup of milk
2 cups of flour
2 ½ teaspoons of Baking Powder
Vanilla to taste

Pour into cupcake tins and bake at 350˚for 20 to 25 minutes
May be frosted with recipe above

For blueberry muffins, just add blueberries!

Pie Crust

1 teaspoon salt
2 cups flour
1 cup of Crisco
Pieces should be the size of walnuts

Add ¾ cup of cold water

Mix lightly into ball
Put into refrigerator overnight
Roll out as needed

Florence Lusk’s advice:

Cook bacon and all pork products slowly and thoroughly