Today Julia Child would have been 100 years old. I should probably be cooking some French inspired recipe but there are very few in the 1906 Berlin Cook Book. And although I watched Julia on TV when I was a child, I also watched Canada’s own Frugal Gourmet. So, I’m going to recognize thrifty cooks tonight.
I still have some corn left that I bought at the market on the weekend. It is probably tough now but I decided to try using it for Green Corn Pudding. The recipe was contributed to the 1906 Berlin Cook Book by Miss Oelschlager. The recipe appears in the Pudding section of the cook book – a section of desserts so I’m curious about this recipe. Green corn simply means fresh corn rather than dried. It is synonymous with “fresh” or “young” or “sweet”.
I cut the kernels from one cob of corn and had the one cup needed. I buttered a small casserole dish before adding the cup of corn. Next, I added 3/4 cup of milk so that the corn was covered. I added pepper and salt and a tablespoon of butter. I put the dish in a 350 degree oven for 30 minutes. The last step was to beat an egg and stir it into the hot corn and milk mixture before returning it to the oven. I left it in the oven about 15 minutes until it was set. I suspect it took this long since I might have used too much milk and butter.
The 1901 census has three Oelschlager households. There are several young girls but they would only be in their early teens in 1906. Therefore I think Miss Oelschlager is Louise. She was born in the area in 1854 and in 1901 she lives with her widowed mother Catherine. It looks like they live next door to a married son and his family. Yet, in 1911 Louise is the only Oelschlager in Berlin. She lives at 93 Queen Street South with her married sister Elenore (wife of W. H. Schmaltz and mother of 20-year-old William). Mr. Schmaltz is in insurance while his son is a student.
I wasn’t sure what to expect when making Green Corn Pudding. After making it, I was sure it would be unpleasant for me. However, it is pretty good even though it contains egg. It would certainly be better with fresh corn but it is fine with older corn too. I had seconds! This is not a company dish but it would suit Mrs. and Miss. Oelschlager just fine. The ingredients would be cheap and easy to eat. Now, a modern cook might want to try it with frozen corn and perhaps add a few more seasonings. I’d suggest trying it once as written and then experiment. It can also be easily doubled for a family. And butter really does make everything better!
GREEN CORN PUDDING
Grate the corn from the cobs, put 1 cupful in a deep buttered baking dish, cover it with milk, sprinkle in a little pepper and salt, add 1 tablespoon butter and set in oven for 1/2 hour. Take it out and stir in an egg that has been well beaten and return it to the oven and leave it only until the custard has set. A few minutes will be sufficient. This is a most delicious accompaniment to a meal course.