Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Allergy-prone caterpillars and apples with digestive issues

Pillsbury is better known for dessert-laden bake-offs than for diet dinners, but in 1970 the company published Pillsbury's Family Weight Control Cook Book.

One interesting thing about this book is that while it assumes that of course the woman is going to be doing all of the cooking, it also assumes that she is not going to subsist on celery suspended in nonfat-dry-milk-enriched gelatin while feeding the kids and husband thick-cut pork chops and ice cream sandwiches. The book emphasizes that it is important to keep the whole family at a healthy weight. It's a little progressive for the time and (unfortunately for me) that means that most of the recipes are not objectively terrible. Seven-year-olds are not going to touch celery and dry milk gelatin no matter how much mom begs.

Another interesting thing about the book is that I have reason to doubt the previous owner's dedication to weight control, as it came with a nice pair of vintage restaurant place mats in the cover:

I'm not sure where they came from, but I sincerely doubt these are from a restaurant known for its diet entrees.

As I said, the recipes are generally passable, and sometimes amusing.

I like the note alerting cooks that the Cranberry Baked Chicken can be baked sans cranberries for some calorie savings. Never mind negating the recipe title....

I was a little concerned when I read the title Cherry Fries, but these involve neither fries nor cherries:

They're just sauteed cherry tomatoes.

My favorite part of the book, by far, is the section on garnishes meant to perk up a diet dinner. Here's the big, crazy, two-page spread:

So many choices!

A cucumber boat with a lemon sail should keep the kids enchanted:

Maybe a citrus tree for the holidays:

To me, the kumquat topper looks like a head, and those weird dark green things are are arms, waving wildly, as kumquat head begs for someone to help pull her out of this ridiculous citrus dress.

You could go with the classics, like radish slices in a partially sliced cucumber:

Such an elegant description for a caterpillar with hives.

If you love food coloring and turnips (and who doesn't?), here's a real treat:

I can't quite figure this one out. I guess maybe it's the radish rose's less-popular cousin?

And my favorite of all, olives stuffed with colored cream cheese...

... or as I like to call it, apple with olives rocketing out of its ass.

Have a great day! And may olives leave your ass alone.


  1. That apple looks like Sputnik! BTW, I love the cover model's hair do. So sassy!

    1. She kind of reminds me of Lana on "Archer" if she lived a waaay more boring life.