Ready for another Cook Book? (Those fundraising cookbooks in the '70s sure came up with some creative titles!)
The colander full of vegetables on the cover seems appropriate for this book, as it has more of a diet-y feeling than most of these fundraiser cookbooks, which usually have a recipe for cabbage soup and a couple Jell-O salads that are composed primarily of fruits and vegetables (rather than cream cheese, marshmallows, and ice cream) for dieting readers.
The diet-adjacent recipes are everywhere, too, not segregated in a two-page "chapter." I came upon the appetizingly-titled "Broccoli Diet Bake" right at the start of the book:
Green peppers, broccoli, and chicken baked in tomato juice. Woo hoo. These Ohioans really know how to excite the taste buds.
Maybe the diet bake would be better with a little sour cream garnish?
The buttermilk-and-bouillon-gelatin will be a fine substitute.
Even a lot of recipes not billed as diet food read as pretty bland and diet-y to me. When I see the title Macaroni and Frank Casserole, I think of a big, gooey plate of mac and cheese studded with hot dog medallions.
This isn't supposed to be diet food, but the dab of macaroni in a thin white sauce seems like it should be.
When I think of lasagna, I think of big slabs of rich tomato sauce and gobs of gooey cheese. (The real takeaway here is that I think cheese should be in pretty much anything!) I don't think of this:
Canned tuna, mayo, some spinach... It's basically hot tuna/pasta salad, with lasagna noodles standing in for the macaroni.
Some of the official diet recipes actually seem less diet-y than the non-diet ones. Substituting cottage cheese for ground beef in a loaf may seem like a diet move...
...but when you use crushed potato chips (instead of, say, oatmeal) as the binder, and drown the whole thing in mushroom soup "gravy," well, the diet cred is more than a little questionable. Maybe you should just have some damn meat loaf if that's what you really want.
Of course, the fact that this cookbook gives me so many recipes I don't really want is exactly what made me want it in the first place. Life is weird.