Back to long, busy days and cool nights-- seems like a good time to pull out the slow cooker, right? Today we're looking at "Rival Crock-Pot Slow Electric Stoneware Cookbook" (undated, but online sources suggest this is from the '70s and that sounds about right).
This booklet cracks me up because the last quarter or so is devoted to shilling for a Crock-Pot accessory: the "special Bread 'n Cake Bake pan." Apparently it's a roughly coffee-can-shaped insert that allows cooks to make (you guessed it!) bread and cake in their Crock Pots to save energy by not turning on their ovens and to make cakes that are "extra moist, even textured, [and] full of flavor."
Of course, that's not all! There's more! The bake pan will allow cooks to mix up casseroles at bed time, refrigerate the ingredients in the pan overnight, and "Simply pop it in the Crock-Pot in the morning" for a no-fuss start to the busy day. What kind of casserole might work well? How about Hearty Hodgepodge:
It's a mix of ground beef, green pepper, and onion with cans and cans and cans of veggies (Tomatoes! Lima beans! Peas! Mushrooms!). I like canned tomatoes, but I'm not so sure about the rest. Canned peas and lima beans are already cooked until they're mushy and metallic-tasting and smell like moldy wet cardboard. Mixing them with rubbery mushrooms and then cooking it all up for another 8-10 hours just seems like overkill to me. I thought my mom cooked veggies until they were beyond dead, but even she wouldn't finish off canned peas by cooking them for another third of a day.
Much more promising (and deliciously retro!) is this cake recipe:
I know the casserole recipes were meant to make the insert seem more versatile and attractive, but for some reason I suspect the cake recipes are far more persuasive.