Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Hairy, homemade happiness

The holidays just keep on giving! This week I have a book my little sister sent me:

The Prairie Du Chien Jaycettes (1978/79? The opening letter is from the 1978-79 president Nancy Ashby, so I assume this was compiled during her tenure.) claim that Happiness Is Homemade, but I'd say this book makes a pretty convincing case that happiness can be found in the Half Price Books clearance racks.

The cover's bootleg version of Dennis the Menace seems not to be having nearly as much fun reaching the cookie jar with the Force as one would assume. Maybe he's self-conscious about his tiny arms and misshapen butt.

There's plenty of fun inside, though. Take Pizza Burgers, for example:

I love pizza burgers-- even have my own custom recipe for homemade veggie pizza burgers-- but I never considered grated Spam to be an essential component. (I guess we're just lucky these aren't Hawaiian pizza burgers, calling for pineapple tidbits in addition to the spam, spaghetti sauce, and mozzarella.)

Te pizza burger is a real recipe as far as I can tell, though, unlike the one for Elephant Stew:

At first, I wasn't sure whether the generically-named Mary Jones sent this in more because she was amused by the thought of spending two months cutting an elephant into bite-sized pieces, cooking it for four weeks, or serving 3800 people. Then I saw it was mostly so she could make a joke about adding a couple rabbits to stretch this feast, even if "most people do not like to find hare in their stew." I hate you Mary Jones, and I also love you.

The opening chapter of the booklet is titled "VIP Section," and most of the recipes are from politicians' wives, like this little number:

If you've ever wanted to eat turnips, but worried they might be insufficiently fluffy, Mamie Eisenhower has a recipe for you!

Nestled in among recipes like this and "Mrs. Richard Nixon"'s steaks braised in V-8 juice, there is one celebrity who is not like the others:

Yep-- Roseanne Roseannadanna sent in a recipe for Soup Without Hairs. (Hint: Wear a hair net while making it.)

A big thanks for this slightly hair-obsessed cookbook!


  1. I'm more curious about Dennis the Menace's T-Rex arms, YIKES

    1. Maybe he's a bit of a prediction of Calvin and his dinosaur alter-ego.

  2. I didn't know that you could grate spam. The elephant stew recipe seems to be popular in this part of the Midwest because I know I saw it in another book I sent you before. I don't think it said anything about getting hare into it, though.

    1. You could grate anything in some of these old books. I've seen people trying to figure out grated American cheese on blogs where they actually make the old recipes. It's hart to find American cheese in anything other than "single" format now, and even if you can, it's so soft that it doesn't take to grating very well.