Lean, Green Cooking Machine

How one old green stove became the jewel of the kitchen for this reader in Palisade, CO.

18_02_CherTom2_REXMay17 green stove oven vintage

What a find!

We bought our first home by flashlight, not knowing we had a green jewel in the kitchen. Our first question: How much for the house? Our second question: Do the appliances go with it? My pulse quickened when the Realtor said yes.

“Didn’t they ever use it?” I asked about the stove.

“Not really,” she said.

Shaking my head, I muttered, “Well, it’s going to get used now!” Saying a prayer, I turned knobs and waited for all of 10 seconds before the element coils turned bright orange. There was still some life in the old Frigidaire.

From then on, winter meant bread-baking for the green stove and me, followed by pie- and cookie-making. Each summer produced 100 to 125 canning jars steaming with hot fruit. Still, the old green stove rattled on, heating those jars until they were processed, sealed and lined up on the counter.

When the workhorse finally started to tire, she needed a chair propped in front of her larger oven door to keep it closed. Eventually, a burner sizzled and burned out. And at last, the oven element was cold to the touch. The electrician shook his head and said, “Sorry.” My heart thumped with panic.

18_02_CherTom3_REXMay17 vintage white stove oven

But then he said, “I have a picture to show you.” The next day, a white Monarch stove arrived, which we set up next to our green Frigidaire. Our new 1950s workhorse, which was molded in Wisconsin by the Malleable Iron Range Co., could cook and can almost as fast as her predecessor!

— Cher L. Tom, Palisade, CO

This story originally appeared in Reminisce

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