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Judging by the quantity of meals involving toast, I would imagine that the browned bread played a fairly substantial role on the tables of Americans in the early twentieth century. I would imagine that many of these were served for lunch — though some would be well-suited to breakfasts or dinners.

Different kinds of toast

1. American Toast
To one egg thoroughly beaten, put a cup of sweet milk and a little salt. Slice light bread and dip into the mixture, allowing each slice to absorb some of the milk; then brown on a hot buttered griddle or thick-bottomed frying pan. Spread with butter and serve hot.

2. Milk toast recipe
23 ways to dress up toast (1912)Put over the fire a quart of milk, put into it a tablespoon of cold butter, stir a heaping teaspoon of flour into half a gill of milk. As soon as the milk on the fire boils, stir in the flour, add a teaspoon of salt. Let all boil up once, remove from the fire and dip in the slices of toasted bread. When all are used up, pour what is left of the scalded milk over the toast. Cover and send to the table hot.

3. Cream toast recipe
Heat a pint of milk to boiling and add a piece of butter the size of an egg. Stir a tablespoon of flour smoothly into a cup of rich cream and add some of the boiling milk to this. Heat it gradually to prevent the flour from lumping; then stir into the boiling milk and let it cook a few minutes; salt to taste. After taking from the fire, stir in a beaten egg. Strain the mixture onto toast, lightly buttered.

4. Cheese toast #1
Toast thin slices of bread an even crisp brown. Place on a warm plate, allowing a small slice to each person and pour on enough melted cheese to cover them. Rich new cheese is best. Serve while warm. Many prefer a little prepared mustard spread over the toast before putting on the cheese.

5. Cheese toast #2
Put half an ounce of butter in a frying pan. When hot, add gradually four ounces of mild American cheese. Whisk it thoroughly until melted. Beat to gether half a pint of cream and two eggs; whisk into the cheese, add a little salt, pour over the crisp toast and serve. These two recipes are usually called Welsh rabbit.

6. Oyster toast
Select the large ones used for frying and first dip them in beaten egg, then in either cracker or bread crumbs and cook upon a fine wire gridiron over a quick fire. Toast should be made ready in advance and a rich cream sauce poured over the whole. After pouring on the sauce, finely-cut celery strewn over the top will add to their delicacy. Or wash oysters in the shell and put them on hot coals or upon the top of a hot stove or hake them in a hot oven. Open the shells with an oyster knife, taking care to lose none of the liquor. Dip the toast into hot salted water quickly and turn out the oysters and liquor over the toast; season with salt and pepper and a teaspoon of melted butter over each. Oysters steamed in the shell are equally as good.

7. Mushrooms on toast recipe
Peel a quart of mushrooms and cut off a little of the root end. Melt an ounce of butter in a frying pan and fry in it half a pound of raw minced steak; add two saltspoons of salt, a pinch of cayenne and a gill of hot water; fry until the juices are extracted from the meat; tilt the pan and squeeze the meat with the back of the spoon until there is nothing left but dry meat, then remove it; add the mushrooms to the liquid, and if there is not enough of it add more butter; toss them about a moment and pour out on hot toast. Some add a little sherry to the dish before removing from the fire. (Get more mushroom recipes here.)

8. Tomato toast
Pare and stew a quart of ripe tomatoes until smooth: season with salt, pepper and a tablespoon of butter. When done, add cup sweet cream and a little flour. Let it scald but not boil; remove at once. Pour over slices of dipped toast, well-buttered.

9. Eggs on toast
Toast the bread a rich brown, allowing one slice to each person. Lay on a warm plate and butter well, then place a nicely poached egg on each slice of toast and pepper and salt to taste.

10. Baked eggs on toast
Toast six slices of stale bread, dip them in hot salted water and butter them lightly. After arranging them on a platter or deep plate break enough eggs to cover them, breaking one at a time and slip over the toast so that they do not break. Sprinkle over them salt and pepper and turn over all some kind of thickened gravy — either chicken or lamb, cream or a cream sauce made the same as white sauce. Turn this over the toast and eggs and bake in a hot oven until the eggs are set, or about five minutes. Serve at once.

11. Ham toast recipe
Take a quarter of a pound of either boiled or fried ham. Chop it fine; mix it with the yolks of two eggs, well beaten, and a tablespoon of butter and enough cream or rich milk to make it soft and a dash of pepper. Stir it over the fire until it thickens. Dip the toast for an instant in hot salted water; spread over some melted butter, then turn over the ham mixture. Serve hot.

12. Minced fowls on toast
Remove from the bones all the meat of either cold roast or boiled fowls. Clean It from the skin and keep covered from the air until ready for use. Boil the bones and skim with three-fourths of a pint of water until reduced quite half. Strain the gravy and let it cool. Next, having skimmed off the fat, put it into a clean saucepan with half a cup of cream, three tablespoons of butter well-mixed with a tablespoon of flour. Keep them stirred until they boil. Then put in the fowl, finely minced, with three hard boiled eggs chopped and sufficient salt and pepper to season. Shake the mince over the fire until just ready to serve. Dish it over hot toast and serve.

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About this story

Source publication: The San Francisco Call

Source publication date: May 05, 1912

Filed under: 1910s, Appetizer recipes, Bread recipes, Chicken recipes, Lunch recipes, Meat recipes

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