Cream Puff Shells

So choux pastry, basically. Although the baking time on this recipe seems odd to me.

Compare it with the version that appeared in the September 19, 1872 edition of the Ellettsville (Indiana) Republican:

Cream Puffs — One pint of water, one half-pound of butter, three-quarters of a pound of flour, ten eggs. Boil the water and butter together, and stir in the flour while boiling. Take it off from the stove to cool, and when cold break in the eggs and stir them thoroughly, but not beat them. Then add a teaspoonful of water. Drop into a pan with a spoon, and bake in a quick oven twenty minutes.

From a notebook originally from somewhere in the general area of Sterling, Colorado from the 1930s.

This recipe is from the second and third pages of the notebook; here are those pages in full (click to enlarge).

Click to expand a longer explanation...

In the words of the seller:
I acquired this book from the great granddaughter of the woman who wrote this book back in a small Nebraska town in the 30’s. She belonged to that generation of rural housewives who worked tirelessly to make ends meet and “keep body and soul together” for their families working the farms.

Later addendum:

[A]fter a conversation I had with a friend’s sister who used to live in North Eastern Colorado, given the type of recipes listed we decided it might be from a small town there, i.e., Sterling or Fort Morgan. Also North Platte or Scottsbluff, Nebraska. Even Cheyenne, Wyoming. If you Google a map of Sterling, Colorado and pull back, you will see all these little towns in that tri-state area.

Cream Puffs

1/2 c. butter
1 c. boiling water
1 c. flour
4 eggs

Place butter and water in saucepan on range, as soon as it boils add flour all at once until well mixed, stir until it forms a ball and leaves the sides of pan.

Set off till cool (not cold); add 1 egg. Beat 5 minutes, another egg and beat 5 minutes, and so on until eggs are all used up in batter. Drop on greased pan (shallow pan). Bake in moderate oven 40 to 50 minutes.

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