To Destroy Flies

September 30th, 2018

Boil the parings of potatoes in a little water for an hour, skim them out, and boil the water down to a few table-spoonfuls. Sweeten with molasses, and turn on to plates. It is a deadly poison. Another method is to boil quassia chips to a strong decoction, sweeten and proceed as above.

Source: Household Hints and Recipes, Henry T. Williams

Keep Potato Peelings

March 31st, 2018

Never throw away your potato peelings, but always burn them, and you will seldom have to clean your stove.

Source: 1001 Household Hints, Ottilie V. Ames

Potatoes Used to Cleanse

January 26th, 2018

Small pieces of raw potato in a little water shaken vigorously inside bottles and lamp chimneys will clean them admirably. To clean a burned porcelain kettle boil peeled potatoes in it. Cold boiled potatoes not over-boiled, used as soap will clean the hands and keep them soft and healthy. To cleanse and stiffen silk, woolen and cotton fabrics use the following recipe:–Grate two good sized potatoes into a pint of clear, clean, soft water. Strain through a coarse sieve into a gallon of water and let the liquid settle. Pour the starchy fluid from the sediment, rub the articles gently in the liquid, rinse them thoroughly in clear water and then dry and press. Water in which potatoes are boiled is said to be very effective in keeping silver bright.

Source: Vaughan’s Vegetable Cook Book

Stained Hands

November 17th, 2017

To remove stains, rub a slice of raw potato upon the stains; or wash the hands in lemon juice or steeped laurel-leaves.

Source: The White House Cookbook, F.L. Gillette

Remedy for a Burn

September 12th, 2017

After immediately applying sweet oil, scrape the inside of a raw potato, and lay some of it on the place, securing it with a rag. In a short time put on fresh potato, and repeat this application very frequently. It will give immediate ease, and draw out the fire. Of course, if the burn is bad, it is best to send for a physician.

Source: Directions for Cookery, in its Various Branches, Eliza Leslie

When A Button Is Swallowed

August 31st, 2017

Children sometimes swallow buttons, fruit stones, thimbles and pennies. When the mother is sure that the child has swallowed a foreign substance the child should be encouraged and even compelled to eat plentifully of mashed potatoes, thick mush and coarse bread. Then follow with syrup of rhubarb or castor oil. Do not give the cathartic immediately on finding out the accident but make sure that much bulky food is taken. Give a child slippery elm to chew when it swallows a penny or button or hard object. This forms a slippery coating on the surface of the penny in the stomach which aids it in passing easily through the intestine and prevents its lodging there and was the remedy applied by a physician when called.

Source: Civic League Cook Book

Burns

August 7th, 2017

Grated raw peeled potatoes spread on bandages and bound on a badly burned arm, shoulder and hand brought immediate relief to one of my children once when I was on a farm and could not get a doctor. I kept the bandages moist by binding fresh new, wet ones over the old ones until pain ceased but did not remove the dressing at all until wound was healed. It healed perfectly without leaving any scar. Do not know the merits of this remedy from a physician’s standpoint but it was used successfully in a bad hotel fire in a village where no physicians resided and the patients all recovered from severe burns and there were no scars left on their bodies.

Source: Civic League Cook Book

Homemade Shortening

May 11th, 2017

Do not throw away small pieces of fat from pork, lamb or steak. Put them on the stove, in a skillet or agate dish and cook them till there is nothing left, but scraps. Then pare a potato, wash clean, cut into thin slices and cook in the fat for a half hour to clarify it. Strain through a cloth. This will be good to fry doughnuts in and for all purposes, where shortening is needed, except for pie crust.

Pieces of fat, not fit for shortening can be saved in some old utensil and made into kitchen soap.

Source: Things Mother Used To Make, L.M. Gurney

A Simple and Harmless Hair Dye

April 15th, 2017

“It is said that the water in which potatoes have been boiled with the skins on forms a speedy and harmless dye for the hair and eyebrows. The pareings of potatoes before cooking may be boiled by themselves, and the water strained off for use. To apply it the shoulders should be covered with cloths to protect the dress and a fine comb dipped in the water drawn through the hair, wetting it at each stroke, until the head is thoroughly soaked. Let the hair dry thoroughly before putting it up. If the result is not satisfactory the first time, repeat the wetting with a sponge, taking care not to discolor the skin of the brow and neck. No hesitation need be felt about trying this, for potato-water is a safe article used in the household in a variety of ways. It relieves chilblains if the feet are soaked in it while the water is hot, and is said to ease rheumatic gout.”

Source: The Housekeeper’s Friend: A Practical Cookbook

To Cleanse Silks, Woolens, and Cottons

February 26th, 2017

Grate raw potatoes to a fine pulp in clean water, and pass the liquid matter through a coarse sieve into another vessel of water ; let the mixture stand still till the fine white particles of the potatoes settle to the bottom; then pour off the liquor from the sediment, and preserve it for use. The article to be cleaned should be laid upon a cloth on a table ; dip a clean sponge into the liquor, and apply it to the article to be cleaned, till the dirt is perfectly separated, then rinse it in clean water several times. Two middle size potatoes will be sufficient for a pint of water. Should there be any grease spots on the articles, they should be previously extracted.

Source: Valuable Receipts, J.M. Prescott