Vintage Refrigerator Recipes for Cool Cooking


This is a special guest post from Talia Felix of The Gibson Girl's Guide to Glamor and Gothica Gothique!

Since Va-Voom Vintage deals with all things vintage, today we're going to take a little peek at some interesting old recipes from times long ago, when refrigeration was a novel thing and people needed to be instructed and informed of the amazing powers to be found in chilled food. Behold, 1927's Electric Refrigerator Recipes and Menus, published by General Electric to be used with their refrigerators!

"To many people electric refrigeration is still such a novelty that they scarcely realize the range of its possibilities," says author Alice Bradley in the intro. "It is almost like having an Aladdin's lamp and not knowing the right way to rub it. [...] The owning of such a refrigerator is a form of health and happiness insurance which every homemaker in America should have the privilege of enjoying." It's nice to see her dream came true.

She later goes into the basics:

Fruit and fruit juices that are to be served for breakfast can be prepared and put into the refrigerator the night before. Exceptions are cantaloupe and pineapple, which cause an unpleasant odor if left in the refrigerator, unless closely covered.

[Fruit cocktails, hors'd'oeuvres, jellied soups, salad greens, salads and salad dressings, dishes for serving chilled items, aspic jelly, pastry and cookie dough, and "all kinds of cold beverages" are then given loving descriptions for how they can be used with a refrigerator and thereby enjoyed more thoroughly.]

There is also an entire chapter on making ice blocks.

While as with so many old time cookbooks there are plenty of disgusting sounding recipes like "Jellied Chicken" and "Frozen Cheese", there are also a goodly proportion of tasty fare, perfect for serving in the summertime. Note that I am editing and reformatting some of these for ease of reading.

Melon Cocktail.
1 cup balls from a cassaba melon or a cantaloup, [sic] using a French vegetable cutter
1 cup balls cut from an apple
1 cup Tokay grapes, skinned and seeded (Note that this was before seedless grapes took over the grocery shelves.)
2 tablespoons syrup from maraschino cherries
a few grains of salt
(The actual instructions make constant references to other recipes in the book: basically one is instructed to combine the ingredients and chill, then serve the fruit mixture on a bed of colored ice cubes, garnished with cherries.)

Frozen Lobster Salad.
1 cup lobster meat cut in pieces ("Crab meat or other shell fish, salmon or chicken may be used in place of lobster.") with
1/2 cup white sauce
1/2 cup white stock in which 1 tablespoon gelatine has been soaked and dissolved
1/4 teaspoon salt
Few gratings of nutmeg
[Combine?] Leave until cold.
3/4 cup cream until stiff
Beat in:
1/2 cup mayonnaise dressing
Add to the lobster mixture and freeze in refrigerator pan. Serve on a bed of lettuce or romaine.

Orange Frappé.
1/3 cup sugar
3 tablespoons white corn syrup
1 cup water
rind from 1 orange
Combine in saucepan and boil for 2 minutes. Cool, and add:
1 cup orange juice
2 tablespoons lemon juice
a few grains of salt.
Strain into a refrigerator pan and freeze like Freezing Methods I or II [Basically, let it freeze about 30 - 60 minutes till ice begins to form, beat the mix, and freeze again another hour or so, beat it again. This yields an icy mixture.]

Orange Pekoe Mousse.
1 cup milk
2 cloves
1 teaspoon gelatine
Scald together, add:
1 1/2 tablespoons orange pekoe tea
[Let cool?] Add to this mixture:
2 egg yolks mixed
1/3 cup sugar
3 tablespoons of corn syrup
a few grains of salt
grated rind of 1 orange
In a double boiler, stir until thickened. Strain, cool and cut and fold into 2 egg whites, beaten stiff. Stir occasionally until cold and beginning to stiffen. Beat 1/2 pint cream until thick, add mixture gradually, turn into pan of refrigerator and freeze [about 3 hours or until firm.]

Lemon Cream Sherbet.
2/3 cup sugar or 1/3 cup sugar and 1/3 cup corn syrup
1/3 cup lemon juice
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup cream, sweet or sour
a few grains salt.
Mix, and add gradually to 2 teaspoon gelatine soaked and dissolved in 2 tablespoons cold water. Chill in large refrigerator pan, then beat 10 minutes or until very light. Return to chilling unit and leave until frozen. If the mixture separates and the bottom portion becomes icy, it should be beaten again.

Pears Frozen with Ginger Ale.
Drain syrup from canned pears and put in refrigerator pan. Add to pear syrup an equal amount of ginger ale. Pour over the pears and leave 2 hours or until mushy.
Place pears in nests of lettuce leaves, fill center with
Preserved ginger, chopped, or with
Chopped nuts, or with
Cream cheese, and serve with
Mayonnaise dressing,
Or omit lettuce and serve with whipped cream.

-- There is also a whole chapter on whipped cream, speaking of which. Interesting ideas that have fallen from modern fashion include pre-freezing pipings of whipped cream in order to place them later onto hot desserts, and coloring whipped cream ("especially attractive with some colorless or dark desserts.")

And did you know -- "Any ice cream, mousse or parfait served with crushed fruit or other sauce becomes a 'coupe.'"

And let us not overlook the best chapter of all: --

"Frozen Delicacies to Tempt the Invalid."

These include Frappéd Clam Juice, Frappéd Sherry Milk, and Orange Ice for Diabetics (with saccharine in place of sugar.)

I must say, the General Electric Refrigerator Recipes is one of the better refrigerator recipe book of the era. I have others in my collection -- GE's must have been very cutting edge as most of its recipes still would hold up today, invalid food aside. (Compare to the Kelvinator brand's Cooking With Cold which includes multiple 2-ingredient salads and other recipes we'd consider too simple nowadays to even be worth describing.) Sometimes the old even becomes new again, as with the whipped cream and ice block advice (candies, fruits and flowers can be frozen inside of ice cubes to decorate them for parties! Wow!)

And of course...


New Sponsorship Program on Va-Voom Vintage!


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About Va-Voom Vintage
Va-Voom Vintage is a blog focusing on vintage fashions from the 1930's-1960's. I write about fashion, beauty, movies, crafts, housewifery and my vintage life. My readers are mainly ladies aged 18-35 from the U.S. UK Canada and Australia who share a love for vintage. 

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Encouragement and Inspiration Link Round-up


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Goodness, my poor blog has been terribly neglected this week. Pj started a new work schedule working three 12 hour days,then he's off for 3 days, then works 3 days again. The working days are crazy and exhausting but the off days have been wonderful! I've been awake early with the kids all week but it has given me lots of extra time for housework, cooking, couponing and being domestically awesome in general. I have made a little time for poking around in blog land, though and thought I'd share some of my favorite posts from the week....

One of my fab sponsors, Heyday gives away a beautiful red and wicker handbag in honor of The Queen's Diamond Jubilee.

Betty Bee Towers has a beautiful post (and gorgeous pics) on loving yourself

Jessica writes about Maybelline's three quick 1950's tricks to eye beauty as well as her own tried and true products and tips on her blog, Chronically Vintage

My momma shares how to have an affordable "staycation" with pics of her Star Trek exhibit staycation

The Vintage Baroness must have read my mind when she posted about beautiful 1930's culotte dresses this week

Who else thinks Katie from The Little Red Squirrel is a genius? Did you see her adorable, clever trousers to jodhpurs revamp earlier this week?

I hope that everyone has a wonderful weekend!!

Friday Fashionistas: Amelia Earhart


how to dress like amelia earhart

amelia earhart vintage fashion

We know her as the daring depression era aviatrix who mysteriously disappeared but she was more to the fashion world than simply "Lady Lindy. Amelia Earhart was America's first celebrity fashion designer and the first to insist on selling separates to fit all shapes and sizes.

"I have always believed that clothes are terribly important in every woman's life....And I also believe that there s much of beauty in aviation-color and line that is exclusive to the air.."
Amelia Earhart in "Amelia Earhart Our Newest Designer. New York World Telegram December 29, 1933

  The Lady
Amelia Earhart was born in Atchison Kansas on July 24, 1897. Her mother raised her and her sister to be tomboys, wearing bloomers, climbing trees and playing with bugs. Her first "flight" occurred when her uncle helped her build a ramp, attached to the roof of a shed with a wooden box that she could ride in like a makeshift roller coaster. She flew down the ramp, into the air and crashed to the ground, later telling her sister "it's just like flying!"
Amelia with students of Perdue University

 In 1920, she had her first ride in a real airplane with pilot, Frank Hawks. She said "By the time I had got two or three hundred feet off the ground, knew I had to fly." Amelia worked several jobs to save enough money for flying lessons and in January of 1921, she began lessons with the pioneer female aviator, Anita Snook.

amelia earhart vintage fashion

In October of 1922, she set the world record for altitude among female pilots at 14,000 feet and n the following year, she became the 16th woman to receive a pilots license. 5 years later, she became the first woman to fly across the Atlantic, although she was only a passenger in the plane. Finally, on May 20, 1932, she piloted a small  Lockeed Vega 5B from Newfoundland to Ireland, making her the first woman to fly solo non-stop across the Atlantic.
amelia earhart vintage fashion
one of Amelia's flight jackets on display at Perdue University

The Legend
Amelia Earhart was the "Queen of the Sky"'. She broke several more world records for speed, altitude, transoceanic fight and women's aviation. She became highly decorated for her achievements in flight. She was a spokesperson for several companies of the time including Lucky Strike and her own luggage an fashion lines. She was an associate editor for Cosmopolitan Magazine, all to raise funds for her aviation projects.


On June 1, 1937, she and her co-pilot Fred Noonan took off from Miami to begin her quest to circumnavigate the globe. They completed 22,000 miles of the journey when they reached Lae, New Guinea. On July 2nd, they took off from Lae headed to Howland Island. The U.S. National Guard was stationed at Howland, waiting to guide her in. These are her transmissions to the island.

 7:42 am "We must be on you, but cannot see you—but gas is running low. Have been unable to reach you by radio. We are flying at 1,000 feet."

8:43 am "We are on the line 157 337. We will repeat this message. We will repeat this on 6210 kilocycles. Wait."  a few minutes later, she radioed, "We are running on line north and south."

Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan were never seen or heard from again. Search efforts went on, scanning Islands throughout the Pacific. Rumors and conspiracies surround her disappearance but no one has ever been able to confirm her fate. This 2009 article from Discovery news discusses a possible resting place of Amelia Earhart and Fred Noonan, citing that they may have crashed on an island in the Pacific Republic of Kilibati.
amelia earhart vintage fashion

Get the Look
Although she claimed to have sewn her own clothing in college, her sister stated in her biography of Amelia that "she simply sewed two lengths of dyed material together gathered one end on a narrowed belt and turned the other end up so it cleared the floor eleven inches all around." A 1928 New York Sun article proclaimed "Miss Earhart Spurns Fashions" and fan letters told her to do something about her hair. In spite of her unconventional style choices, she was still named one of the top 10 best dressed in 1935.

Amelia's clothing choices:

Since women's aviation was relatively new, Amelia designed a flight suit for the ladies of the Ninety-Nines as well as jump suits for herself.

 In an attempt to make Amelia Earhart a household name and make money to support her aviation, she debuted her own clothing line in 1934. The line included affordable, practical designs for active women like herself. She took inspiration from her love of flight and used it all of her fashion designs. In an interview, she said she always uses "something characteristic of aviation, a parachute cord or tie or belt, a ball-bearing belt buckle, wing bolts and nuts for buttons." Her garments were made of parachute silks, durable cotton and tweed and featured flight-themed details such as buttons shaped like airplane wheels and propellers. The clothing line appeared in very neutral shades of brown, gray, red, blue and taupe.

amelia earhart vintage fashion
1934 Vogue

1934 Vogue

            She also had a line of Stetson hats and lightweight, practical luggage for women who travel.This is my circa 1960's Amelia Earhart train case

In spite of her efforts, the Amelia Earhart clothing line was a flop and ended after its first season.

 Check out my post about the movie and Amelia's fashions, Friday Night Fashion and a Movie: Amelia 

Images of Amelia's belongings, documents, photos and more at the Perdue University Libraries
read more about her fashion line in the online book On Fashion

Wear the Rainbow


1950s summer casual fashion with bakelite rainbow bangles and vintage squaw dress patio skirt

      On Thursday, we went out for our weekly date night: dinner and Dark Shadows at the movies.
 I wore an entirely new outfit. I was feeling like a big poo all day (note the wild hair) on Thursday and the only way to get me out of the house in a good mood was color.

Thankfully, my brand new, gorgeous, fabulous, comfortable  wedges from Modcloth came in the mail.
1950s summer casual fashion with bakelite rainbow bangles and vintage squaw dress patio skirt

These shoes looked amazing on the site but reviews noted that they run quite big. I usually wear a size 9.5-10 and have wide feet so I ordered a size 9. Like many other reviews said, the ankle strap could use an extra hole to make them fit a bit tighter but other than that, these shoes are perfection! The color is darker and more golden than the Modcloth photo and they are gorgeous. If they had these in other colors, I'd probably buy one of each. I wore them all day and they were wonderfully comfortable.

Also, my new favorite skirt from local St Louis vintage shop Retro 101. I went down last weekend to meet a blog reader and while shopping, I spotted this gorgeous skirt. I think it may have been part of a two piece sqaw/patio dress. Do you think I should make a matching blouse this summer?
1950s summer casual fashion with bakelite rainbow bangles and vintage squaw dress patio skirt

1940's blouse-handmade by me, using my own pattern
rainbow ric rack skirt-Retro 101
shoes-Modcloth Sunset Lemonade Wedge
Jamaica handbag-estate sale
1950's pink at eyes-flea market
assorted bakelite
hair bow-Jack's Daughter

*disclosure-Va-Voom Vintage is an affiliate of Modcloth*

Tutorial: Rita Hayworth Pin Curl Waves


Rita Hayworth waves hair tutorial from Va-Voom Vintage

My hair has finally grown long enough to try some Rita style waves. I used my Sculpture Pin Curler for this set but you can use manual pin curling as well.  See yesterday's post about how to use the sculpture pin curler. This style works best on shoulder length or longer hair. My hair is cut in a femme fatale style, so it is layered and has that vintage "U" shape in the back.

My hair pin curls best on towel dried hair with lotta body setting lotion, so that's what I have to start with

 Begin by parting your hair way off to the side. I used the arch of my brow as a guide for the part.

Work in rows from one side of your head to the next. I rolled the first row up. The front is sectioned into 2 rows of two curls, all rolled away from the face with this side section hanging down

how to do rita hayworth pin curl waves vintage hair tutorial
this little section off to the side is rolled down. how to do rita hayworth pin curl waves vintage hair tutorial

Roll the rest of your hair in alternating layers. One layer rolled up, the next rolled down until all of your hair is pinned up. 

how to do rita hayworth pin curl waves vintage hair tutorial
how to do rita hayworth pin curl waves vintage hair tutorial

I did this around 5 in the evening, slept in it all night and took it out the next morning for a brush out.

how to do rita hayworth pin curl waves vintage hair tutorial

 Brushing out a pin curl set is vital to the finished look. In the beginning of my pin curling days, I had no idea how to brush out a set so my hair looked very clown-like.

This video is almost 15 minutes long but will show you exactly how I brush out this set. It really does take a long time to do but in the end, it looks fantastic. In the video, I share a few tips and tricks for how to de-frizz and how to sculpt your hair into waves.

Please pardon my mid-western "just" and "kinda". It's funny how you never realize how you speak until you hear yourself, right?


If you love Rita's style as much as I do, see her as a featured Friday Fashionista.

Va-Voom Vintage is not an affiliate of The Sculpture Pin Curler was provided in exchange for a review on this blog. All reviews and opinions presented on The Sculpture Pin Curler are my own.

How to Use The Sculpture Pin Culer


I reviewed the sculpture pin curl tool from yesterday but today I thought I'd talk about how to use it! It's very easy, even on the first try. Here's how....

 I start by brushing my hair out, making sure there are no knots. My hair tends to pin curl best on towel dried hair with lotta body setting lotion. Part hair as desired and section off a piece of hair to curl
easy vintage pin curl hair style tutorial

                                 Choose small or large curls and insert the pin curler at the scalp.

                        Comb the tool through to the end of the hair and wrap the ends around the tool
easy vintage pin curl hair style tutorial

     Rotate the tool either up or down, depending on your desired style and roll it all the way up to the scalp

                                                                    remove the tool

                                        pin the curl into place or use pin curl clips to secure it

easy vintage pin curl hair style tutorial

               Stay tuned tomorrow to see my Rita Hayworth pin curl set using the Sculpture Pin Curler!

Show and Tell: Novelty Brooches


vintage novelty brooch collection from Va-Voom Vintage

Good morning, lovely ladies!
 Today I have a guest post over at Lollipops and Roses for her Show and Tell Tuesday post. The post features my collection of vintage novelty brooches.

 Do you have a dearly loved collection?

Thank you so much to Stephanie for inviting me to Show and Tell Tuesday!

My Little Vintage Family


Hello everyone! I hope that all of the mommas out there had a wonderful Mother's Day weekend!! We had a great weekend. Saturday was spent getting our family portraits done, in vintage style of course. After photos, we went to my mother-in-law's house to celebrate Mother's Day with her. Pj made her favorite dish, shrimp creole, which is what his dad made for her each time she came home from the hospital after giving birth.

On Mother's Day, I had breakfast and mimosas in bed while I watched Mad Men. The kids let me sleep in till almost 9:00, which was such a rare treat! We had dinner at my mom's house followed by playing at a local park until dark.

 Anyway, I wanted to show you some of our vintage family portraits! My sister's friend, Roxanne is an amazing photographer and I've been dying to get some photos done my her for years. She did a fantastic job getting my kids to smile and look at the camera, even though all they wanted to do was run off and play.

                                            All photos by Roxanne Spooner Photography


 I wore my Paris Market Dress that I made last year for Easter.  To tie in the colors from the kids outfits, I accessorized with  Bakelite jewelry and a green bolero. I used a pair of over sized Bakelite earrings as dress clips to keep my bolero in place. See more on The Paris Market Dress  here

Pj doesn't dig on vintage so he put together a modern, vintage-style outfit with his own rugged twist, He wore a button-up shirt with rolled up sleeves, his favorite vest, grey corduroy pants and one of his trademark hats

 Olivia wore her green vintage dress from Brenda Sue's. I love the embroidered yoke, peter pan collar and little rhinestone buckle. I did make a green hair ribbon to match but she fell asleep in the car on the way to the park and it slipped out!

Rhys wore a vintage yellow seersucker romper that I picked up from my local antique mall last month. He looked a little naked in just the romper so Pj had the idea to put a little striped onesie on underneath.

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