Author Topic: The Impoverished Students' Book of Cookery, Drinkery & Housekeepery  (Read 977 times)

foggyzhenya

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Good evening,

I am quite new to Mustachianism and still far from successfully implementing its precepts, but I was browsing a cookbook I've had for a long time (though not for as long as it's been in the world - it was published in the 1960s), titled "The Impoverished Students' Book of Cookery, Drinkery & Housekeepery", published by a young philosopher shortly after graduating from Reed College.

A classmate of his had kept the cookbook, and 30 years her son taught me to cook a couple of the casseroles when I was still in college. I've been cooking there super simple, cheap and tasty dishes for almost 20 years.

But in addition to recommending the book, I was struck by the parallels between the observations the youthful author included in the commentary and MMM (both are funny and thoughtful), and this one in particular should resonate with this crowd:

"It is important to distinguish between the merely Impoverished Student and the really Impoverished Student. The really Impoverished Student is poor! [...] the really Impoverished Student cannot afford to buy a cookbook.

"The merely Impoverished Student, for whom this work is intended, on the other hand, need not be poor. One of the finest Impoverished Students it has been my pleasure to meet is a young lady worth roughly $10 million dollars but the only way one could come to know that is by being told. Impoverished studenthood is primarily a state of mind."

There's lots more wisdom in it, and also a few good recipes:
https://www.reed.edu/reed_magazine/spring2008/columns/end_paper/index.html

lhamo

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Re: The Impoverished Students' Book of Cookery, Drinkery & Housekeepery
« Reply #1 on: October 22, 2018, 05:41:34 PM »
Paging @monstermonster who must surely know about this Portland classic....

jeninco

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Re: The Impoverished Students' Book of Cookery, Drinkery & Housekeepery
« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2018, 04:29:58 PM »
We have a copy! I'm not sure how much I'd recommend making the recipes as written (unless you're a really, really beginning cook) but the book's fun to read for ideas and inspiration and amusement. Not to mention a general sense of what can be combined to make a palatable casserole.

(In fact, we had it out just a few weeks ago to show a friend.)

Askel

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Re: The Impoverished Students' Book of Cookery, Drinkery & Housekeepery
« Reply #3 on: October 24, 2018, 04:42:53 PM »
I can relate, my kick in the MMM pants came when I went to grad school and learned to live as a really impoverished student. Now that I'm back working full time, I get to be merely impoverished.

I have something similar from roughly the same era- a copy of a cookbook published by the "Wives Club" (!!!) of my university.  Some good stuff in there and some... "interesting" stuff.   

adventurestache

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Re: The Impoverished Students' Book of Cookery, Drinkery & Housekeepery
« Reply #4 on: October 25, 2018, 06:33:08 PM »
"MAXIM III: Whenever I make reference to “butter” in this book, I mean oleomargarine. I can’t tell the difference in cooking. I’ll bet you can’t tell the difference in cooking."

Maxim 1 and 2 were great, but #3 might be a bit controversial these days! Is margarine still significantly cheaper than butter?

Rural

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Re: The Impoverished Students' Book of Cookery, Drinkery & Housekeepery
« Reply #5 on: October 25, 2018, 07:20:31 PM »
"MAXIM III: Whenever I make reference to “butter” in this book, I mean oleomargarine. I can’t tell the difference in cooking. I’ll bet you can’t tell the difference in cooking."

Maxim 1 and 2 were great, but #3 might be a bit controversial these days! Is margarine still significantly cheaper than butter?


Profoundly so, but then so is olive oil, and it's far better for you than margarine (as is butter, but expensive). Perhaps cheapest of all, though, is buying an item of "movabilia" known as a blender at a thrift store and spending two minutes a week making butter from cream.

ETA instruction: https://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-make-blender-butter-228225
« Last Edit: October 25, 2018, 07:24:18 PM by Rural »

adventurestache

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Re: The Impoverished Students' Book of Cookery, Drinkery & Housekeepery
« Reply #6 on: October 25, 2018, 07:30:07 PM »
"MAXIM III: Whenever I make reference to “butter” in this book, I mean oleomargarine. I can’t tell the difference in cooking. I’ll bet you can’t tell the difference in cooking."

Maxim 1 and 2 were great, but #3 might be a bit controversial these days! Is margarine still significantly cheaper than butter?


Profoundly so, but then so is olive oil, and it's far better for you than margarine (as is butter, but expensive). Perhaps cheapest of all, though, is buying an item of "movabilia" known as a blender at a thrift store and spending two minutes a week making butter from cream.

ETA instruction: https://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-make-blender-butter-228225

I recently got a nice blender for my wedding, and have tossed around the idea of making butter before. Perhaps this weekend I'll give it a shot. Thanks for the inspiration!

Goldielocks

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Re: The Impoverished Students' Book of Cookery, Drinkery & Housekeepery
« Reply #7 on: November 05, 2018, 11:16:02 AM »
"MAXIM III: Whenever I make reference to “butter” in this book, I mean oleomargarine. I can’t tell the difference in cooking. I’ll bet you can’t tell the difference in cooking."

Maxim 1 and 2 were great, but #3 might be a bit controversial these days! Is margarine still significantly cheaper than butter?


Profoundly so, but then so is olive oil, and it's far better for you than margarine (as is butter, but expensive). Perhaps cheapest of all, though, is buying an item of "movabilia" known as a blender at a thrift store and spending two minutes a week making butter from cream.

ETA instruction: https://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-make-blender-butter-228225

Making one's own butter, when you need to buy the cream is hideously expensive here.   
Margarine (hard) is comparatively cheap, I use it 50/50 in my baking when it calls for butter.

Check out this book "Make the bread, buy the butter"...
https://www.amazon.ca/Make-Bread-Buy-Butter-Shouldnt-ebook/dp/B004T4KXMS

Zoot

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Re: The Impoverished Students' Book of Cookery, Drinkery & Housekeepery
« Reply #8 on: November 09, 2018, 09:31:45 AM »
Thanks for posting--I love this kind of "proto-Mustachian" stuff.  :)  I bought a copy from the Reed Bookstore online today!

Turns out that proceeds from the sale at the bookstore go to fund a scholarship fund, so I was doubly happy to make the purchase there.

Zoot

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Re: The Impoverished Students' Book of Cookery, Drinkery & Housekeepery
« Reply #9 on: November 14, 2018, 07:23:18 AM »
Thanks for posting--I love this kind of "proto-Mustachian" stuff.  :)  I bought a copy from the Reed Bookstore online today!

Turns out that proceeds from the sale at the bookstore go to fund a scholarship fund, so I was doubly happy to make the purchase there.

Just wanted to update this:  my copy arrived this week, and it is just DELIGHTFUL.  Playfully and intelligently written, it's a fun read for the style as much as the content.  :)  Thanks for the recommendation!

foggyzhenya

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Re: The Impoverished Students' Book of Cookery, Drinkery & Housekeepery
« Reply #10 on: November 14, 2018, 08:01:59 AM »
I'm so glad you like it! I also love it for the writing style and the humor. It also reminded me that long-winded intros to recipes is a long-standing tradition and not unique to modern-day cooking blogs by the likes of David Lebovitz, Ree Drummond, etc.

BrightFIRE

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When I was in college I bought a copy of the Moosewood Cookbook by Mollie Katzen, which was first published in the 70s. I still have it. It's hand-lettered and full of whimsical drawings, as well as mostly good vegetarian food (with a few fails that are obviously from the 70s/back to the land/eat it because it's good, not tasty/vegetarian food has come a long way). I think a lot of what she made from scratch was out of necessity because being vegetarian wasn't that common, but the recipes are still solid now that it's mainstream.

APowers

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"MAXIM III: Whenever I make reference to “butter” in this book, I mean oleomargarine. I can’t tell the difference in cooking. I’ll bet you can’t tell the difference in cooking."

Maxim 1 and 2 were great, but #3 might be a bit controversial these days! Is margarine still significantly cheaper than butter?


Profoundly so, but then so is olive oil, and it's far better for you than margarine (as is butter, but expensive). Perhaps cheapest of all, though, is buying an item of "movabilia" known as a blender at a thrift store and spending two minutes a week making butter from cream.

ETA instruction: https://www.thekitchn.com/how-to-make-blender-butter-228225

Making one's own butter, when you need to buy the cream is hideously expensive here.   
Margarine (hard) is comparatively cheap, I use it 50/50 in my baking when it calls for butter.

Check out this book "Make the bread, buy the butter"...
https://www.amazon.ca/Make-Bread-Buy-Butter-Shouldnt-ebook/dp/B004T4KXMS

I don't even live in Canada, and I was going to say that there is literally no cost savings to make your own butter, unless you have a supply of free cream. Cream is just as expensive (or more) as butter, per unit of butter. Margarine, however, is indeed incredibly cheap. Butter tends toward >$2/lb, while margarine can be found for <$1/lb. If I didn't think it was unhealthy, I'd switch to using margarine for almost everywhere I use butter.

Rural

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 Interesting. Cream is a lot cheaper here by weight than butter.