OCTOBER 18, 1951
NEW YORK, Wednesday—On Monday I visited America House here, having read a story of the exhibit of furniture made by young student craftsmen. The School for American Craftsmen, which is sponsoring the exhibit, was founded in 1944 by the American Craftsmen's Education Council. Now it has been taken over as a division of the Rochester Institute of Technology, Rochester, N.Y.
I was very much interested in the designs of some of the furniture and fascinated by many of the things in the shop. I always enjoy seeing the handicraft work that is done in this country. It proves that artist-craftsmen can be developed here as well as in Europe or any other place in the world.
Once having begun to look at craftsmen's work I could not help but walk a little farther and go into the Southern Highlanders shop on Rockefeller Plaza. There I also saw nice wood carving and ceramic work and weaving.
Not long ago I received a United Nations cookbook and immediately I was fascinated in looking up the dishes I should serve whenever I have guests from foreign countries. It is really going to be fun to try out these different recipes and then surprise my guests. The variety, of course, is great and it may be difficult at times to get the proper ingredients, but I am certainly going to enjoy experimenting.
Now there comes to me a new American regional cookbook. I am beginning to think we should make a collection of these recipes from different parts of the country. They vary greatly and I think particularly when we have guests from other countries, it would be interesting to them to be given something to eat that is characteristic of some part of the United States.
This book is called "The Tennessee Cookbook." It primarily covers dishes from the mountain regions. The foreword says: "People who dwell here are proud and dignified; tall and rugged; sinewy and courageous; cordial and hospitable. Mountaineer life is difficult, but the mountaineer shares with a friendliness that touches you."
These recipes certainly give a picture of hospitability in the old days by an open fire where the spit turned and the ashes were used to bake potatoes. Those days are gone forever and the electric stove has replaced the open fire, but the hospitality is still there.
This new book is a treasure not only of recipes from many periods but of household hints that are gems for all of us. For instance, at the bottom of one page is a little note that says: "If cream is too thin to whip, add a tablespoon of cocoa to each cup, mix and whip."
For a lack of that knowledge I have gone without whipped cream many a time!
If you have small fry in the house and are looking around for things you might ask Santa Claus to bring them, I am sure you will be glad to hear of the new books called, "Try It Because It's Fun." The authors are Herb and Dee Sweet, who live on a farm in Noblesville, Indiana.
I admire their fertility of mind in thinking up things for little people to do, but I assure you that these books also will keep grownups very busy. And for bad weather in the winter they will be invaluable for entertainment and amusement in the home.