Learning from the past and deciphering old-time recipes in your modern kitchen can definitely improve your cooking skills, and more importantly, it will put you in touch with a time long, long ago.
Kitchen Gems: Vintage Cookbooks
Try this Dutch Potato Salad from an old family cookbook.
Dutch Potato Salad
From Receipts (the Van Loan family cookbook, circa 1900s to 1980s)
Use one potato per person. Boil potatoes in jackets. Peel & slice. Fry 2 or 3 slices of bacon very crisp. Remove bacon & add to grease 2 tabs. flour. Brown flour. Add 1/2 cup vinegar. Cook until like thin mustard. Add 1 tabs. sugar to sauce. To potatoes add bacon, onion, celery as you like it, 2 hard boiled eggs & green pepper. Season with salt & pepper & toss into custardy sauce. Let stand 1 hour to season.
4 Russet potatoes, cleaned and unpeeled
3 slices bacon
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 cup vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup sliced celery
2 hard-boiled eggs, chopped
1/4 cup chopped green pepper
Salt and pepper
Place potatoes in large pot and cover with water. Boil for 15 to 20 minutes until tender. Drain and cool. When potatoes are cool enough to handle, peel and slice into 1/4-inch pieces.
Fry bacon until crisp. Remove to paper towel-lined plate. When cool, crumble into small pieces. To bacon grease in pan, add flour and cook for 3 minutes. Add vinegar and cook until thin, like consistency of mustard. Add sugar and stir until dissolved.
Place sliced potatoes in large serving bowl. Add crumbled bacon, onion, celery, hard boiled eggs and green pepper. Season with salt and pepper. Pour sauce over and toss together to coat. Let stand 1 hour at room temperature before serving. Yields 4 servings.