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How to Preserve a Husband

Geez. That sounds like a macabre title for a mystery.

It’s not; it’s a recipe. But that sounds equally ghoulish… 

I’ve started cutting sugar from my diet. Which means I have to make my own mayonnaise; no store-bought stuff for me, because it’s full of sugar.

What’s that got to do with Rose? Well, I started wondering how Rose would make mayonnaise without the slick hand-held immersion blender I used. (My recipe specifically says not to try mixing it by hand, I suppose because it’s a big pain to do it that way and they want me to be encouraged.) Then I wondered would Rose even want to make mayo, given that she didn’t have a refrigerator. In fact, to keep it cool, she’d have to either store it in her cellar or drop it down her well.

So I opened up The Perry Home Cookbook by the Ladies of Perry, Kansas, a 1920 collection of midwest recipes that I found online to see if they even had a recipe for this eggy condiment. That’s when I ran into the “How to Preserve Your Husband” recipe.

First be careful in your selection, do not choose too young, and take only such as have been reared in a good moral atmosphere. When once selected and decided upon let that part remain for ever [sic] settled and give your entire thought to preparation for domestic use.

Some insist on keeping them in a pickle while others are getting them continually in hot water this only makes them sour, hard and some times [sic] bitter. Even poor varieties may be made sweet, tender, and good by garnishing with patience well sweetened with smiles flavored with kisses to taste.

Then wrap them in a mantle of charity keep warm by a steady fire of domestic devotion. Serve with peaches and cream; when thus prepared they will keep for years.

As it happens, there is a recipe for mayonnaise as well. But, it’s full of sugar, so perhaps Rose will make due with butter.

P.S.: As a writer, it’s my job to keep poor Rose’s husband “in a pickle” and “continually in hot water.” And maybe it will make him sour and hard, and even bitter. Hopefully, Rose will do her part with the smiles and kisses. As for serving “with peaches and cream”… Well, Rose would rather not share what she and Harold are doing with whipped cream.

4 thoughts on “How to Preserve a Husband

  1. Poor husbands!

    The simplest mayonnaise recipe I know is the two spoonfuls of dijon, one egg recipe. Mix those two, then ever so slowly drop by drop stir in olive oil, and keep stirring as you go. After that you can add pepper or maybe even some herbs. Yum!

    Liked by 1 person

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