Wednesday, October 26, 2016

As Tasteful as This Blog Gets...

A big thanks to Jeffrey's Antiques for very tastefully putting an unremovable sticker on the cover of Very Tastefully Yours (Clark County Extension Homemakers' Clubs, 1977). Aside from the sticker, the cover is as tasteful as these recipe collections go, with a hand-drawn cornucopia spilling out fruits and vegetables, most of them immediately recognizable despite the lack of color cues. That's a trick in itself.

I was a bit surprised by the first page of the first chapter: Appetizers, Pickles, Relishes:

Many of these collections have lots of pickle recipes, but this is the first I've seen that elects to omit them entirely out of safety concerns. I like the diplomatic tone, assuring contributors that "This is not a bad reflection on anyone." I also think this was an extremely wise move, as I would be reluctant to make a (more than usually) potentially health-threatening recipe from this book. It's the only book I've found that also comes with an entire page of printed corrections:

We have everything from the relatively minor (an omission of a teaspoon of celery seed) to recipes that were missing their instructions entirely.

You might notice that this recipe for Dried Beef Casserole...

...doesn't actually list dried beef as an ingredient. There is a correction for it above (the Dried Beef Casserole on page 45, as the other dried beef casserole recipe that needed a correction omitted instructions on what to do with the pimentos), but the recipe immediately above it on the same page had a similar problem:

Notice anything missing from the chicken casserole? (Like, say, chicken?) And this one isn't even listed on the page of corrections.

Plenty of recipes actually appear to be correct, though. Here's a casserole recipe that seems to be complete:

Hamburger Vegetable Dish certainly has both hamburgers and vegetables. You could serve it on a dish. And that's about all I can say for it. I've never lived in a Clark county, but I almost had to check twice to see if my mom had somehow submitted this recipe. It is exactly the kind of thing she loved to make: bland as an unsalted soda cracker washed down with lukewarm tap water.

More colorful recipes hide out in this book too, though. I am not at all sure what to make of this:

Pineapple and marshmallows is a tried-and-true "salad" combination for those who'd really prefer dessert, but what happens when you throw in diced American cheese? And do you pour the hot salad dressing over the assembled cheese-pineapple-marshmallow combination? Will it melt the cheese and marshmallows? Will it all turn into a weirdly-congealed sweet-cheesy-pineapply mass? Or should you let the dressing cool first and maybe end up with distinct bites of American cheese in with the pineapple and dissolved marshmallows? I can't quite wrap my head around this one.

Thank you for reading about old recipes that were missing major components (or that maybe should have left out a few). Perhaps I'm missing a major component myself, but I'm glad you have the patience to read anyway.

No comments:

Post a Comment