Mrs. Crowen’s American Lady’s Cookery Book is one of the country’s “grandmother” cookbooks. Published originally in 1847 under the title The American System of Cookery, it went through many editions, remaining in print until the end of the century. With more than 1200 recipes, it was meant to be encyclopedic in its coverage—from calf’s head soup to candied nectarines and buttermilk muffins to goose ragout. The language is plain and the approach one of good common kitchen sense. The following recipe entitled Delicious Butter is typical:
Lay open three clean coarse towels, one over the other; put a pint of thick cream in the upper one, tie the cream in them as close as possible; then bury it in the earth in a dry place, eighteen inches deep, for twenty-four hours; then put the cream in a cool earthen basin, and stir it with a spoon for five minutes in summer, or fifteen in winter;—when you will have a lump of cool, fresh, and most delicious butter, for this breakfast table. Why not try it?
This copy is the 1866 edition—over-all in Very Good condition—casebound, with red fabric and bright gold stamping on the spine. Small repaired chipping at the spine head and foot and some tiny holes along the hinge. The binding, however, is fully sound and the interior unmarked. This is a good-looking copy.