Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Praise the cook, dammit!

I'm returning to my cook booklet grab bag for today's entry. It's the demandingly-titled "Praise the Cook" from Pet Milk (1962).

Does this book have to implore us to "Praise the Cook" because the idea would not present itself otherwise? That's probably not a great sign.

And if the cook is the one reading this book, is it really just an order to praise oneself? Maybe this is written for people with no self-confidence?

I'm confused, but the scalloped potatoes look like they may well be praiseworthy. (Hard to go wrong with potatoes!)

The gelatin castle looks like it could have been a trick to unmold, too,so the cook must have known how to finesse a jiggly blob out of its home without breaking the thing into a jillion slithering pieces.

There are 14 total recipes, so not a lot to choose from. I think this one is pretty intriguing, though:

What are those? Thumbprint cookies? Cake donuts with jelly in the hole?

Nope! They are corn-crisped hamburgers. Mix hamburger with Pet Milk, Kellogg's Corn Flakes, and seasonings. Shape and bread with more Pet Milk, Kellogg's Corn Flakes, and seasonings. (Notice a theme here?) Top with catsup and bake on Reynolds Wrap for crispy, milky, corny burgers.

I'm sensing that Pet Milk was not really the only sponsor....

And since we are all crazy for gelatin molds, here's Recipe No. 14, from the cover:

Tutti-Frutti Mold is totally mid-20th-century, with a can of fruit cocktail in the gelatin. This one is dressed up with a fluffed-up base layer of Pet Milk and lemon juice in the base layer. It doesn't sound too bad, but I wonder if canned fruit cocktail was a lot different in the '60s. I'm used to grapes, maraschino cherries, and diced peaches and pears. Look at the picture from the cover, though, and it looks as if there are some seriously big hunks of pear in there. This would be one mold that would be hard to eat gracefully unless you could somehow cut up the pears (and who cuts up a gelatin mold?)!

Have a corn-crisped, tutti-frutti Wednesday!


  1. I'll be skipping the corn crisped burger, thanks. And I gave up on unmolding jello molds, since mine turned into a million slimy pieces the one time I tried it. These days, I put my jello in a wine glass and tell everyone it's fancy. Trust Me! It has fruit in it, and it's in Stemware! It's Fancy! So Praise The Cook!

    1. If you want to get REALLY fancy, some of the old Jell-O cookbooks recommend slightly tilting the stemware in a rack as the dessert solidifies so it will be magically slanted when it comes out. There are lots of routes to Fancy-Town. ;-)