Festive Keto Cranberry Orange Bread · Fittoserve Group

Here’s a wonderful, low-carb keto quick bread for your Christmas Morning! YUM!



Festive Keto Cranberry Orange Bread · Fittoserve Group

Hundred-Year-Old Recipe for Apple Johnny Cake (Apple Corn Bread)

As many of you know, I’m a huge fan of vintage and old style cooking. I stumbled across this wonderful blog, that publishes 100 year old recipes. They have a new fan, I can tell you. Here is a unique corn bread recipe, that includes apples! What’s not to like!

A Hundred Years Ago

Apple Johny CakeCan I let you in on a secret? March is one of the most difficult months to eat local seasonal foods. Winter staples like squash, onions, cabbage. . . even apples are starting to seen humdrum. And, it will be at least a few weeks until local fresh produce is available. Usually, I cheat a little and buy strawberries and asparagus at the supermarket, and justify it by saying they are March fruits and vegetables. . . somewhere.

But, when I browse through hundred-year-old magazines, I’m keenly aware that people  actually ate local foods that had been stored all winter during March back then.

I decided to that today I was going to make an authentic March food and began flipping through the March, 1916 issue of Good Housekeeping. I came across an old recipe for Apple Johnny Cake that intrigued me.

This corn bread contains no sugar and…

View original post 164 more words

My Pioneer Cookbook Adventure – 15 Incredible Recipes from “The Virginia Housewife” ~ Circa 1839

Before we get to the main blog article, I wanted to share my latest purchase with you. My antique waffle iron, circa 1900. Have a look!


It is in really good condition. I have seasoned it and tried using it once, which was an utter failure. The waffles stuck to the inside, so much so that we almost couldn’t get it open. I will not give up. I’m going to season it again and keep trying.


As I have come to the end of the first section, baking soda bread, in the 1903 Good Housekeeping cookbook,  I decided to do something a bit different, before moving onto the next section.

All of the antique/vintage cookbooks I own are from the first half of the 20th century, which is fine, but, I wanted to get some that are a bit older. However, buying antique cookbooks is not an inexpensive endeavor, many costing $100’s or even into the $1000’s. So, I’ve taken to the internet and found a plethora of sites with pdf or ebook versions of these antique cookbooks. Since I hail from Virginia, I chose the Virginia Housewife by Mary Randolph. 

This book is full of wonderful and unique recipes. I’ve chosen recipes that are fitting with today’s lifestyle. There are, however, many recipes not as common today, such as how to bake a calf’s head or how to fry calf’s feet. What is wonderful about that time period is they used quite literally everything on the animal, which is very healthy. Some of the things they used, such as the head, feet and organs, contain abundant amounts of collagen, minerals, healthy fats and other nutrients. When making bone broth, for example, the best parts of the animal are the feet, joints and head, as these contain the highest amounts of collagen.

You’ll have to do some research to “translate” many of the recipes. You will also have to experiment with oven temperatures. Many say simply “bake”. There are a few that use terms such as “quick”, “fast” or “hot”. In cases like that you can refer to the following chart:


It is my intention to keep searching for reasonably priced hard copies of these cookbooks. However, I’ll be trying many of the recipes from this and other cookbooks, and reporting the results to you. I hope you enjoy looking through these wonderful and unique recipes.

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From: The Virginia Housewife

By: Mrs. Mary Randolph –

Published – 1839

Source for images

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Chicken and Eggs

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Since baking soda wasn’t invented until 1843, the rising agent for all baked goods was yeast. Below is the method used in the book for making yeast. Hop tea, as you may suspect, is a tea made from hops, which can be found HERE.

A GILL is equal to 4 ounces.

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My Pioneer Cookbook Adventure: Good Housekeeping 1903 ~ Boston Brown Bread

Hello all! Welcome to another edition of my adventures in cooking old school. As a brief summary, for those new to my blog, I have a small collection of cookbooks dating between 1895 to 1950. I am currently attempting recipes from a 1903 Good Housekeeping cookbook.


This week, I attempted to make BOSTON BROWN BREAD, an interesting experience, considering I’ve never had it before. As is the case with all the recipes in this book, you receive very little instructions. Here is the recipe as it appears in the book:


So, yep, that’s all I had to work with. This prompted me to do a bit of research, which in turn prompted me to make a change in the recipe/length of cooking. I combined the ingredients from this recipe with the tips from SERIOUS EATS-EASY BOSTON BROWN BREAD. The main problem I had was what to put the batter in for cooking, as the recipe doesn’t indicate what to put it in or how to steam it. According to Serious Eats, Boston Brown Bread is indeed steamed, and mainly prepared in cans, either one large can, such as a coffee can, or several smaller cans. Yvonne, at Serious Eats, recommends 3 small cans, approximately 14 ounces each, for quick cooking time. (Instead of the 3 hours recommended in the recipe above!) She says that a 14 ounce tomato can is perfect. I used 3 bean cans. I cleaned the cans thoroughly,  buttered them and put parchment paper in the bottom. (Per a tip from Yvonne)


So, with problem #1 solved, I moved onto problem #2-just what is graham flour. Now, I know we’ve all heard of graham crackers, but what exactly is graham flour. I looked in my usual grocery store, with no luck, and I didn’t have time to go to Whole Foods. As I was walking around the grocery store, I googled graham flour, to see what else I could use. According to Wikipedia, graham flour is a form of wheat flour named after Sylvester Graham. Mr. Graham didn’t like discarding the germ and bran, as is done in the production of white flour. He believed in using all the grain in milling flour. and this could help heal the poor health back in his day (1794 – 1850). Here is a quote from the Wikipedia article:

“Graham flour is similar to whole wheat flour in that both are made from the whole grain; however graham flour is not sifted during milling (i.e. unbolted), and is ground more coarsely.”

I also consulted Yvonne’s article on Boston Brown Bread. She indicates:

 “…it’s a New England colonial classic made with corn meal, rye or whole wheat flour, and enriched with molasses.”

So, as is the case with many pioneer recipes, you use what’s on hand. So, I decided to use stone ground whole wheat flour.

Let’s move on to how things went for me.

Here’s what I used:



  • 1 cup Organic whole milk (and a splash of vinegar to sour the milk)
  • 1/2 cup Blackstrap molasses
  • 1 pasture-raised egg
  • 2 tablespoons butter – melted
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda (not pictured)
  • 3/4 cup Organic Stone Ground Whole Wheat (Bob’s Red Mill)

Here’s what I did:

  1. Grease three 14-ounce cans well and place a circle of parchment paper on the bottom of each can. fullsizeoutput_d3b
  2. Mix sour milk and baking soda in a bowl and add molasses. fullsizeoutput_d33
  3. Add egg and mix well. fullsizeoutput_d43
  4. Pour in butter. fullsizeoutput_d31.jpeg
  5. Gradually add flour, 1/4 cup at a time, until batter resembles a cake batter. I used approximately 3/4 cup. (perhaps a bit more)
  6. Using an ice cream scoop, dived batter evenly between the three cans. fullsizeoutput_d3d

  7. Cover each can with foil and tie with string. fullsizeoutput_d2b
  8. Place the three cans in a large pot, a couple of inches taller than the cans. fullsizeoutput_d2d
  9. Pour water into the pot, halfway up the cans. Bring water to a simmer, and reduce heat to low. Simmer gently until bread is pulling away from the sides of the can and set. Bread is done when skewer inserted comes out with moist crumbs. (about 35 minutes, not 3 hours)fullsizeoutput_d27
  10. Remove from pot and set on wire rack. Leave in cans until completely cool.
  11. THE HARDEST PART…GETTING IT OUT OF THE CAN!!! Run a knife around the can and remove by turning it upside down and knocking it onto the work surface. This is easier said than done. You can see the photo, I was not entirely successful.-notice all the crumbs!)+CMmwJVmRD+z8A1pfFCpXA


Final thoughts:

This was incredibly easy to make. As I said, getting it out of the can, was quite difficult. If I ever make it again, I’ll put parchment paper around the sides as well as the bottom. My son and I tried it both plain and with honey. My son didn’t really care for it, saying it was “Meh” (Teenage translation-neither good nor bad-it just is…) I quite liked it with butter and honey. According to Yvonne at Serious Eats, it’s normally served with cream cheese. I didn’t have any on hand. Maybe next time. I can see the draw to this bread. It resembles cake more than bread. It’s REALLY moist, which makes sense due to the cooking technique.

Have any of you tried Boston Brown Bread? Did you grow up on it? Have you tried the canned store bought version? I’d love to hear your thoughts on this unique bread recipe.






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:






Thankful Thursday: Banana Flour choc chunk Loaf ! – DaniRowRuns

Today’s Thankful Thursday article comes to us from Dani Row Runs. Dani was the 2nd blogger to follow me, way back when I wrote my first blogpost in 2015, then didn’t write anything else for a year! Thanks to Dani for following me!

Dani says her blog is meant to:

“Help people create a life of greater health and self wealth”

The posts on Dani Row Runs are super healthy recipes using super foods, and whole food ingredients, such as raw cacao, hemp, goji berries and cashews. The recipe I’m highlighting today uses BANANA FLOUR as the main ingredient.

Here’s a quick :50 video showing the health benefits of banana flour:

If you’re not familiar with banana flour, it’s made from unripe, green bananas. The bananas are peeled, thinly sliced, dried and ground into flour. The result is a wonderful flour that is very similar to wheat flour and a great substitute for those of us who are gluten sensitive. Here is the nutrient content of banana flour courtesy  of  Zuvii Banana Flour.

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Since we’re talking about Complex Carbohydrates here on The Purple Almond this week, Banana Flour is the perfect ingredient. As you see from the nutrients above, banana flour is jam packed with something called RESISTANT STARCH. In fact, banana flour is the highest known form of resistant starch in the world. (1).

What exactly is resistant starch? Resistant starch is a type of starch that “resists” digestion. Instead, it travels to the large intestine, where it feeds the good bacteria or MICROBIOME, which is absolutely essential to a healthy gut, and by extension a healthy body. Here is a 4:04 video highlighting the importance of your microbiome and resistant starch.

NOTE: Because resistant starch and therefore banana flour is very high in fiber, use it sparingly at first. It can produce gas and bloating, if your body is not used to consuming it.


To see the complete recipe, follow this link to


Banana Flour choc chunk Loaf !  – DaniRowRuns

Other recipes from Dani Row Runs:

Raw Bounty Bars


Maple Syrup Cashew Butter


Protein Energy Balls



For more information on


  1. http://bananaflour.com/why-banana-flour/
  2. http://www.marksdailyapple.com/the-definitive-guide-to-resistant-starch/
  3. http://www.fao.org/docrep/W8079E/w8079e0h.htm
  4. https://www.prebiotin.com/prebiotin-academy/what-are-prebiotics/dietary-fiber/

Paleo Irish Soda Bread – A handfull of thoughts

A wonderful, gluten-free,

paleo version of an old Irish classic.



Happy St. Patrick’s Day! I don’t usual post a recipe on Friday’s, aren’t you pleasantly surprised? I thought so. And it’s holiday themed. I’ve really got it toge…

Source: Paleo Irish Soda Bread – A handfull of thoughts

Sourdough Soda Bread + 6 sweet & savory variations (including rolls!)


Happy St. Patty’s Day everyone! As a continuation on the “sourdough” theme, I found a recipe for SOURDOUGH SODA BREAD! If you need instructions on making a sourdough starter, see this article.



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For instructions, follow this link: Sourdough Irish Soda Bread

This article also contains 6 variations. They include:

  • Tasty Rye Bread
  • Buckwheat/Whole Wheat Bread
  • Cinnamon Swirl Bread
  • Asiago Herb Dinner Rolls
  • Rosemary Bread
  • Mini Loaves

For complete instructions on all 7 recipes, follow this link : Sourdough Soda Bread + 6 sweet & savory variations (including rolls!)

Health Benefits of Wild Yeast Sourdough Bread and How to Make it…with 4 Variations

A little while ago, I did a “Thank You” blog for reaching 500 likes by sharing a recipe for authentic Amish Friendship Bread. This bread is a type of sour dough bread, and the starter is shared to daughters on their wedding day or to friends as a gift.

So just what is sourdough?…I mean REAL traditionally made and properly fermented sourdough…

Sourdough is one of the oldest forms of fermentation, possibly dating to ancient Egypt. It is a natural form of leavening, that was used for centuries. (until commercial brewers yeast came along)

Most leavened bread, or bread in which the dough rises, uses commercial yeast. However, traditionally made sourdough…REAL sourdough, uses what’s called “Wild Yeast” and lactic acid bacteria from the flour, to leaven the bread. Wild yeast is naturally present in the air and on the grains. Making the starter gives this wild yeast food to grow. The acidic nature of wild yeast, allows it to work with lactic acid bacteria, allowing the dough to grow and rise. Most fermented foods contain lactic acid, such as: yogurt, kefir, pickles, sauerkraut and kimchi.

Here is a video, which discusses the science behind wild yeast and traditional sourdough bread. 

What are the nutrition benefits of this type of bread? Nutrition content depends on the flour used, but in general  the nutrition contents of an average piece of sourdough:

On average, one medium slice weighing approximately 2 ounces (56 g) contains (1):

  • Calories: 162 calories
  • Carbs: 32 grams
  • Fiber: 2–4 grams
  • Protein: 6 grams
  • Fat: 2 grams
  • Selenium: 22% of the RDI
  • Folate: 20% of the RDI
  • Thiamin: 16% of the RDI
  • Sodium: 16% of the RDI
  • Manganese: 14% of the RDI
  • Niacin: 14% of the RDI
  • Iron: 12% of the RDI

Sourdough bread, especially whole grain sourdough, is considered more nutritious than regular bread. Why? Grains contain a substance known as “Phytic Acid”, AKA, phytates. In the field of nutrition,  phytates are an “anti-nutrient”, because they “bind” the wonderful minerals present in whole grains, impeding your body’s ability to absorb them.

However, the lactic acid, present in sourdough bread, deteriorates the phytates in the grain, resulting in bread with a much lower phytate level. Some studies show that phytates, in sourdough, are reduced by as much as 25 – 50%, when compared with conventional bread,  which increases mineral absorption (1). Also, the lactic acid and bacteria in sourdough themselves, release anti-oxidants. Studies show that folate levels, or vitamin B9, tend to be higher in sourdough bread.

Here are some other health benefits of sourdough bread (1):

  1. Due to the bacteria in the bread, sourdough is easier to digest than conventional bread. Could be safe for individuals with gluten sensitivities. Sourdough bread has a lower gluten content than conventional bread. The gluten that is present, tends to be easier to digest.
  2. Help control blood sugar. Some research indicates the carbohydrate molecules are changed during fermentation, lowering the speed in which it is digested. In other words, the sugar spike is lessened. One study showed that individuals who ate sourdough had lower blood sugar and insulin levels than people who ate conventional bread.



What is a STARTER? Mixing flour and water together and allowing it to set for several days, feeds the wild yeast, naturally present in the air and on the flour, allows the wild yeast to grow, making what is known as a “sourdough starter”.

Here is a video showing exactly how to make your own “wild yeast” sourdough starter:

Now that you have a starter, here are some bread recipes! ENJOY AND BON APPETIT!










1) Why Sourdough Bread Is One of the Healthiest Breads-This is the main source for this article. For more specific information and a step-by-step guide on to how to make a starter , follow this link.

Tomato,feta and basil bread sticks~Gluten Free Home Bakery

Here is a wonderfully flavored gluten-free, paleo recipe from Gluten Free Home Bakery. The recipe uses a combination of almond and tapioca flour. The dough is flavored with tomato paste, basil and feta cheese, for a wonderful and tasty bread stick.

Continue reading “Tomato,feta and basil bread sticks~Gluten Free Home Bakery”