Now, if you're feeling the way most people seem to be feeling these days, you'll think Tommy there has the right idea. (I can't deny that I've joined him a time or two.)
But if there's one thing the appreciation for a vintage lifestyle can do for you, it's knowledge of how to make the most of what you've got: from reading the history to making the vintage things you own live long past their projected lifetimes.
I collect cookbooks. When I say collect...well. I have 12 shelves of cookbooks. This doesn't take into consideration the ones piled on top of already full shelves, or the ones piled on my bedside table. Or the ones in the living room, or the Christmas cookbooks tucked under the armoire, or...you get the picture.
Make do, make do and mend. Whether it's about just being thrifty because it's "moral" or you don't want to drive to town more than once a month, or you're in the midst of a depression, or--again, lots of reasons and prompts.
What it boils down to is this: you can do it. With, surprisingly, the things you might otherwise have thrown out or dismissed.
Take this for an example. I've been working on making sourdough starter*, absolutely from scratch; I haven't used the stuff for decades, since I baked bread when living in Virginia (because, in the late 1980s, there was very little Italian, French, or artisanal bread available for sale in any part of the South). Yeast breads are not high on my list of Stuff That's Fun To Bake...but needs must, and all that. I got pretty good at it, some 25 years ago or so.
Well, my starter is coming along, but not as quickly as it might. I don't have any commercial yeast around to give it a kick in the pants, and I don't have any wholewheat (wholemeal) flour (which attracts wild yeast more readily), so it's going slowly. I'm on day 5, and it's not much of a sponge when I check on it.
The best way to get things going, in the absence of what I've mentioned above is discarding some starter, and "feeding" it with another dose of flour and water (50-50 proportions by weight). I don't like to waste things, especially food, at any time, so I looked up recipes for using discarded starter. King Arthur Flour's website
to the rescue--I found a smallish recipe for a savory sourdough pancake recipe. I cut it in half and went my merry way. Didn't add the recommended corn and green onion, because I didn't have the onion, and my garlic chives aren't up yet.
That being the case, I thought about maple syrup (I still have plenty) or jelly and lemon. I looked in the fridge and found the remains of a jar of heavenly jam** (peaches, rind and juice of an orange, Maraschino cherries) that had set too hard. I'm a Yankee (or cheap, if you prefer!) and just couldn't toss the batch. I also didn't feel like adding water and re-making it, so I've been using it for jam cake, once it's suitably diluted to the correct consistency.
I combined the jam--about 3 tablespoons--with about the same amount of water and simmered it until it looked right. When it was slightly cooled, I added a splash of quince-lemon brandy.
We have a winner! I like pancakes, but I don't love them; I've never been one to choose them over something really bad for me, like corned beef hash and rye toast dripping with butter (and homemade jelly), but they're okay. My usual complaint is that they're just too heavy. I've made good pancakes for years--they're quick and thrifty, and you can ring all kinds of changes on them, but this time, I'm enthusiastic. These things are delicious; light, not exactly tangy, but without the overwhelming sweetness even unsweetened pancakes sometimes have (to my taste buds).
Besides--they're even more thrifty than bog-standard pancakes. Ding!
I'll be making these again.
*There's a lot of information about sourdough starters available online. Check the King Arthur site for a beginning, and just keep asking Dr. Google. You'll get there.
**If anyone wants the recipe, speak up in the comments. I'll write a post about it.