Throwback Thursday: Good Housekeeping 1903 ~ Batter Cakes and Breakfast Puffs

Welcome to the second edition of Throwback Thursday.

As a quick reminder, I have collected a series of cookbooks from 1903 through 1954. I’ve started with the Good Housekeeping 1903 edition. (Seen below) The intention of this series is to “get back to our roots”. I believe in cooking food from scratch, the way our great grandparents cooked. A wonderful time in our history, when food was prepared and eaten at home, before fast food, before prepared food, before refined food.


In the first edition of Throwback Thursday,  I made Popovers. They turned out pretty good, if I do say so myself. 😉 (Considering I’ve never made them before.) Here’s a  photo of the final result below. I’m working my way through “Baking Powder Breads”.


For today’s article, I’ve decided to make two recipes. The reason behind this decision is that the first recipe is simply a basic “pancake” recipe called BATTER CAKES. The second one was a bit more challenging, called BREAKFAST PUFFS.

When I prepared the Popovers, I used an antique Dover Beater I had purchased from Ebay, circa 1875. As you might imagine, it didn’t work very well. I purchased a modern hand beater from Amazon. It really isn’t much different. Although the 1875 beater is made of cast iron, and the modern beater is stainless steal, the similarities are quite striking. You can see them both below, side by side.


Batter Cakes


 You can see the recipe below, as seen in the book. Every recipe in the book looks like this.


Ingredients (what I used)


  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3 cups sour milk (non-homogenized, cream line whole milk)
  • 3 pasture raised eggs (separated- yolks beaten and whites beaten stiff with a dover beater)
  • Pinch of Pink Himalayan Salt
  • 2-3 cups Einkorn All Purpose Flour – enough to make a cake-like batter


  • Mix 1 teaspoon baking soda into 3 cups sour milk.


  • Mix beaten yolks into milk/soda mixture


  • Add salt and slowly add flour 1/2 cup at a time until you have a cake like batter.


  • Fold in stiff egg whites, being careful not to deflate the whites.


  • Take one soup ladle full of batter, and pour it onto a hot cast iron griddle. Flip when edges look dry and batter begins to bubble. Brown on other side and remove.


  • Here’s the finished product


You can see my “helper” in these photos.



There you have it. A 1903 pancake recipe, called BATTER CAKES! It is a decent pancake recipe, though not quite as “fluffy” as my usual recipe. My family did enjoy it.

Now, onto the 2nd recipe!



And, here is the recipe, as seen in the book


Ingredients I used:


  • 2 cups non-homogenized cream line whole milk
  • 1/4 pound Amish butter (weighed on a scale)
  • 3/4 pound einkorn all purpose flour (weighed on a scale)
  • 5 pasture-raised eggs (separated and beaten)
  • organic Sugar


  • Preheat oven to 425 degrees
  • Grease cast iron muffin pan


  • Mix milk and butter in a pan. Stir and bring to boil.


  • Add flour and mix thoroughly. Move to bowl and cool completely.


  • Separate eggs and beat yolks.


  • Add beaten yolks to cooled dough


  • Beat egg whites to soft peaks


  • Add to cooled dough


  • Using two spoons, filled greased muffin pan


  • Bake in “quick oven” (425) for 30  minutes or until slightly puffy and golden brown.


  • Put organic sugar in a bowl. Roll puffs into sugar and enjoy. **



I followed the recipe to the letter and questioned it every step of the way. I thought the batter would be too thick for the eggs, but it worked out. I didn’t think they would “puff” up, because the dough was so dense, but they did. The result was a very tasty breakfast pastry. They tasted like a mixture of a popover and a doughnut. They were light, puffy and eggy like a popover, but dense like a doughnut. They went over very well in my house. The recipe made 16 puffs.


** After rolling the first batch in sugar, I made a slight change. The sugar didn’t really stick to the puffs, so I brushed melted butter on top of the next batches of puffs before removing them from the pan and rolling them in sugar. My son loved this change. Not only did the sugar stick better, but the butter added a nice flavor to the puffs. I HIGHLY recommend this added step.



that’s it for this edition of


Stay tuned next time

for 2 more recipes:






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