I remember helping my grandmother do some “downsizing” and “uncluttering” when I was in high school, and she had a cabinet over her refrigerator full of old, old cookbooks and recipe leaflets dating from her early married years in the World War One era. I sure wish I had been able to save them; but I am finding the internet is a bonanza of these old books.
"The Good Housekeeping Women’s Cook Book 1909" has some good recipes, you can download the free PDF at the link. Here is one of them. I did modify it by adding peas and a little onion for flavor, and I give a recipe for the cream sauce and bread crumbs, which the original didn’t show…you were supposed to know how to make those recipes. They also give just wood stove baking directions; a moderate oven is usually 350°-375°.
This is a very good recipe to use up Easter goodies, but we liked enough to make it whenever I have too many eggs or they are on a good sale, the last time I made this they were 50¢ a dozen on the best sale we had seen for several years.
1 tablespoon chopped onion
1 cup ham – diced
1 cup peas, fresh or frozen
1 ½ cups cream sauce
3 large eggs -- hard cooked and sliced
½ cup fresh bread crumbs
2 teaspoons melted butter
1 ½ cups milk
3 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
Salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 375°.
Toss melted butter and breadcrumbs and set aside. Grease a 1-1 ¼ quart shallow casserole.
To prepare cream sauce; melt butter, set off heat and whisk in flour until smooth, heat over medium heat one minute, stirring constantly. Set off heat and whisk in milk slowly. Let cook 3-4 minutes until medium thick.
Stir the ham, onion and peas into the cream sauce, put half in a baking dish, add the sliced or chopped eggs, then the rest of the ham mixture, cover with bread crumbs, and bake until a very light brown.
Bake at 375° for 20-25 minutes until bubbly and crumbs are brown.