May 24, 2011

An Artist at the Stove

Love, happiness and - yes, even fame - can be yours.  How, you may ask? Simply by achieving true greatness in the art of cooking at your kitchen stove. Little did you realize when you sauteed those pork chops tonight that you were on your way to control the destiny of the world!

But how will you know when you have achieved true artistry? When will others be forced to acknowledge your mastery? Well, it turns out that the Mystery Chef has a very simple and specific test that will answer just those questions: "The way you serve mashed potatoes shows whether or not you are an artist at the stove." I clearly have a ways to go, since my mashed potatoes generally come from a box.  But if your plans for world domination are being held back by your inferior mashed potatoes, never fear. The Mystery Chef lays out his very own methods for achieving potato perfection.

Once you are master of the world, please be kind to us mere mortals; we are suffering enough with our pathetic boxed potato flakes.

The way you serve mashed potatoes shows whether or not you are an artist at the stove.  Never serve watery mashed potatoes, nor should there be a lump of potato unmashed. Here's the way I cook and mash potatoes: First remove every eye and black speck from potatoes before boiling. Boil in covered pot. Start in cold water, and when water boils, turn flame low for a slow boil. Boil for 30 minutes then drain ALL the water off and put the potatoes through a ricer. Rice them in the pot they were boiled in. Then add a level tablespoon of butter to each 2 potatoes (4 TBS. butter equals half a 1/4 lb. print). [?? That's what it says. What it means I have no idea] Then add a little milk. Place the pot over a slow flame and beat the potatoes vigourously with a large spoon. The more you beat, the better your potatoes will be. The addition of 1/4 teaspoon of Davis Baking Powder to each 4 potatoes used will help to give you light, fluffy mashed potatoes. The amount of butter and milk to be used should be decided by the artist at the stove. Mashed potatoes prepared in this way will reheat perfectly. (See Tip 24, p. 77)


Use a double boiler. Fill the bottom pot with boiling water and into the upper pot put a tablespoon of butter - depending on the amount of potatoes you are reheating - use your own judgement. Let it melt. Now put your cold potatoes in and add some milk. Mix the milk and butter in with a fork and then beat with a spoon - heat well until they are hot and smooth again. See if they are not just like freshly mashed potatoes.

May 23, 2011

Who is that Masked Man?

This week I'll be going through a little gem of a cookbook by the Mystery Chef, who has long since been revealed as early radio/TV chef John MacPherson. The Little Book of Excellent Recipes was published in 1934 under the sponsorship of Davis Baking Soda and includes a few hundred recipes plus 81 "Cooking Tips" that range from "How to keep horseradish from bothering the eyes while grating" (clench a 1/4 slice of ordinary bread between your teeth) to "Putting out a fat fire". MacPherson has an unusual and interesting back story, as summarized by blogger Sandra Lee:

“MacPherson writes that he came to America in 1906 from London where he owned a rapidly growing advertising business. He came looking for American business and later decided to stay and learn American methods. He left the London business in the hands of his father who was a director for various large companies. His father often complained that John made money so easily and spent it much too freely; he thought if his son stayed in America it would be an opportunity to learn the real value of money. His father, who had been sending him 100 pounds decided he would change the amount to 2 pounds a week…all of which led to a quick change in John’s way of living. He gave up hotel living and found rooms in a boarding house. “The house was fine” he writes, “but words fail me when I try to tell you how bad the meals were…”

Thus it was that he moved to an apartment with a fellow former boarder and began his foray into the culinary arts. Given his cooking skills, the enjoyment he received from cooking, his ability to put information into clear and simple terms - and no doubt that British accent (he was a native Scotsman) - it isn't surprising that a one-time stint as a fill-in for a friend's radio program led him to a new career as a popular radio chef. 
Why the "Mystery Chef" moniker? His proper mother was "horrified" by the thought of her son taking up cooking as a hobby, let alone actually working as a chef, especially one announcing himself over the airwaves. During her lifetime, he used his alias to protect her from the shame and embarrassment of his chosen profession. 

One thing that's very surprising about his recipes is that they seem much more contemporary than those in cookbooks from the 40's through 60's, with their 'all things in aspic" style. As a post-Depression radio host speaking to ordinary people across the country, The Mystery Chef kept his repertoire interesting, simple and affordable, though not plain or bland. For example, MacPherson is credited with being the first to introduce Beef Stroganoff to the American palate.  

The recipes in this book almost all stand the test of time.  The "Tips", less so.  We've tested this first tip, so I guess the following  can be considered "Frightening Food Investigative Report #2.

How did it turn out? Exactly as you suspect it would when you add 6 TABLESPOONS of sugar per grapefruit. Of the three testers, I was the only one who ate my serving, and that was only after draining the grapefruit syrup off.  Perhaps they were celebrating the end of sugar rationing with a bit of excess consumption?

May 20, 2011

Where the Wild Things Are....Eaten

There are so many frightening food recipe choices remaining in the Wild Game Cookbook, I've concluded that I will have to return to this cookbook again to pay homage to the full range of recipes it offers.  I will close out this first Wild Game Week, though, with a recipe who's name put an amusing picture in my mind. See if you can guess the dish from this illustration:
If you guessed Porcupine and Pineapple Shish Kabobs, you are quite astute! Sadly for the porcupine, the actual recipe requires his dismemberment. Interestingly, this recipe is in the "Home Cooking" section of the cookbook, right under the recipe for that other traditional icon of the home-cooked meal, BBQ Lion Ribs. Bone appetit!


Serves: 2 - 4
Prep Time: 20 minutes

2 - 4 rear porcupine legs
2 large pineapple rings, cut into chunks
1/4 cup pineapple juice

Alternate the porcupine legs and pineapple chunks on skewers. Let the legs cook a bit, then brush on the pineapple juice.  Cook until done.

Wild Game Cookbook, North American Hunters Club, 1988. Recipe contributed by Anthony Pace.

May 19, 2011

Leave It to Beaver

Yesterday's recipe for Moose Nose has set a high bar but I think today's recipe is a strong contender for second place in the "wierd wild game" category.  Here is an illustration of the object of today's culinary attention:

Oops! Wrong Beaver!
That's better! Now examine this picture and take a guess as to the part of beaver anatomy used in today's recipe. Is it the belly? Is it the leg? Is it the back? No, no, and no. It's the tail, dummy! Would I lie to you?

Serves: 2-4
Prep Time: 45 minutes

Blister tail over fire until skin loosens (or dip into boiling water for a few minutes). Pull off skin. Cut up and boil with a pot of beans. Add salt and pepper to taste. Some chopped onions add to the flavor. Beaver tail is also good roasted over a campfire or in the oven.

Good, hmmm? Then why does the contributer of this recipe use only initials, thus casting a shadow of doubt on whether this is a legitimate submission.  Who wants to test this one?

Wild Game Cookbook, North American Hunters club, 1988. Recipe contributed by G.O.A.B.C.

May 18, 2011

You Win by a Nose

You may think that the "I Can't Believe It's Cougar" recipe in yesterday's post is about as far out as you get in cooking wild game, but if you do you are WRONG! Today's recipe features a source of meat that I have never, ever imagined.  I am speaking of Moose Nose. What more can I say?

WARNING: this recipe is followed by a graphic BEFORE and AFTER picture of Moose Nose. It is not a sight for the faint of heart.

Serves 2 - 3
Prep Time: 24 hours

1 fresh moose nose
1 small onion, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic
salt and pepper

First bag yourself a moose, preferably an Alaskan moose (they have the biggest noses). Clean the nose by skinning and removing all hair. Cut the meat into small cubes and cover with water. Add the garlic, onions, salt and pepper. Let boil until tender (I wonder how much this step contributes to the 24 hour prep time?). Remove from fire or stove and let chill. Serve cold in the gellied broth (Aaaaagh!!)

Wild Game Cookbook, North American Hunters club, 1988. Recipe contributed by "Alaska " Rick Sinchak.

May 17, 2011

You Won't Believe It's Cougar!

Believe it or not, this is the name of an actual recipe. Made with actual cougar. So many of you, no doubt, have been puzzled by the question, "What can I do with all this cougar meat?" Never fear, the North American Hunting Club has the answer for you. The Wild Game Cookbook offers recipes to make a wide array of wild game more palatable. A very wide array:  alligator, antelope, bear, beaver, buffalo, cougar, coyote, duck, elk, goose, grouse, javelina, lion, porcupine, moose, pheasant, ptarmigan, quail, rabbit, squirrel, turkey and venison.  If you regularly join in the joy of deer hunting and you are lucky enough to bag a deer (okay, okay, hunters out there - skilled that better?), this is the cookbook that you want to have waiting for you back at deer camp. More than 50 venison recipes will add variety to the usual spaghetti sauce/chili version of venison cooking. Actually, if you are a frequent (and, we assume, successful) hunter, and you can't find your own vintage copy of The Wild Game Cookbook (1988), you should check out the NAHC website: They list 85 pages of recipes and cooking advice, which should be enough to get you started, whatever your source of meat.

Since we're offering cougar meat today, I Googled the term looking for an image.  While I found no pictures of actual meat from an actual cougar, I did find the Urban Dictionary definition (Any young man being preyed upon by an older, more experienced woman) and many, many pictures of Madonna's boy toy, Jesus Luz, in his tighty whities. Don't say I didn't warn you!.  


1/4 cup soy sauce
2 - 4 lbs. cougar meat
1 1/2 TBS. minced garlic
2 TBS. Worcestershire sauce
1 lb. sliced bacon
6 oz. of beer (More if you want to drink some - that might improve the dish)
1/4 tsp. liquid smoke (Why? You're cooking this on a campfire!)
1/4 tsp. pepper

Mix all ingredients except meat and bacon in a bowl. Trim all fat and gristle from meat and then cut into small pieces. Soak meat in mixture for 1/2 hour. (Do not, I repeat, do not, eat the meat at this time.  There have been recent reports of trichinosis among hunters who have eaten the meat raw. My thinking? They asked for it! Raw? Really?) Wrap half the meat in bacon strips, secure them with a toothpick and fry until done.  Fry the remaining meat without bacon for a different taste. You can flour or bread the meat prior to cooking, if desired.

Wild Game Cookbook, North American Hunters club, 1988. Recipe contributed by Jeff Gleave of IG Guides and Outfitters, Monroe UT

May 16, 2011

Cooking is Child's Play

Today's recipe comes from The Kids in the Kitchen Cookbook, subtitled How to Teach Your Child the Delights of Cooking and Eating.  Since it is targeted to children, it is full of child-friendly recipes that are easy to make and that appeal to the tastes of youngsters. But author Lois Levine manages to sneak in a few frightening foods, too. Glorious Spinach (really? isn't 'glorious' promising a bit too much?), Zucchini Custard Casserole and Butterflied Leg of Lamb all seem to run counter to the theme of this little book, but there they are. For a recipe that is least likely to appeal to children, though, I nominate Stuffed Cauliflower. It offers a combination of two unloved foods that is sure to put off all but the most adaptable children - cruciferous veggies and mushrooms (the latter of which is often fine with kids right up to the day they discover they are eating a fungus).

My copy of this cookbook has been annotated by its former owner, rating various recipes she has tried and noting the occasion when they were served.  Her ratings scale appears to be: so-so, mediocre, fine, nice, O.K., good, real good, very good, delicious, very delicious, and wow! (only Devonshire Potato Pie rated the wow!). Stuffed Cauliflower has not been tested - surprise, surprise.
I think children would prefer their cauliflower this way, for display only. But if you feel the need to avenge yourself on your children, forget the cute little sheep. Stuffed Cauliflower is the way to go.


Steam until tender (about 30 minutes):
1 large cauliflower
1/2 cup water
1/2 tsp. salt
Drain in colander.

Saute 5 minutes in 4 TBS. butter:
1/4 lb. mushrooms, sliced
1 medium onion, minced
1/2 cup minced celery
3 sprigs parsley, minced
Stir in 1 TBS. flour

Remove center stalk from drained cauliflower, being careful to keep cauliflower whole. Chop stalk and set aside. Stand cauliflower, hollow side up, in greased shallow pan and add 1/4 cup water.

Add to sauteed vegetables:
chopped cauliflower stalk
3/4 cup chopped toasted almonds
1/2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
dash Tabasco
salt and pepper to taste

Spoon vegetable mixture into cauliflower. Brush top with 2 TBS. melted butter.
Sprinkle with 1/2 cup bread crumbs.
Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. Serves 6.

The Kids in the Kitchen Cookbook, Lois Levine, Macmillan Publishing, 1968

May 13, 2011

How to Make Ham Sad

You know how you always seem to have more leftovers than you want when you serve a nice ham for Easter dinner?  It seems hams are better suited for a family of 12 than a family of four. This year, my kids asked if we could have anything besides ham or turkey so they didn't have to eat it again, and again, and again. As the person who has to come up with what to do with the leftovers, I thought that was an excellent idea. But maybe you set great store by keeping up the family traditions, and you served ham as your Easter entree. Since then, you have put ham in your mac and cheese. You have put ham in a quiche. You have mixed it in with red beans. You have mixed it in with baked beans.  The problem is that none of these dishes actually requires much ham, so you are always on the lookout for one more recipe to use up a little more ham. Today's recipe could be just what you are looking for....but I doubt it.  Perhaps the executives at United Gas Improvement Company were looking for a recipe that would demonstrate the precision stovetop temperature feature of the new Gold Star gas range in all it's glory, and they didn't really pay attention to anything other than the multitude of temperatures featured in this recipe.  Maybe they thought, as I once did, that sweetbreads actually involved something sweet, like sweet potatoes. Well, if they're not sweet, why are they called sweetbreads? According to The Straight, "They're called sweetbreads for the obvious reason that if you called them thymus glands or pancreas you couldn't give the damn things away." So true, so true.

There are a few gourmands who will swear to the great desirability of sweetbreads, including Ryan Adams, who blogs at He claims, "What keeps the sweetbread from gaining popularity in home cooking is the fact that they require a fair amount of fiddling with before you can actually get down to the process of cooking them. There is a thick membrane that needs to be peeled away, which is a bit more of an art form than technique. The goal is to keep the meaty nodules together with only a little bit of membrane covering to keep them intact." So it's only a matter of mastering the art of membrane removal that stands between me and the true pleasure of sweetbreads? I think not, Ryan. One look at the photo that heads your "Offal of the Week" column on sweetbreads ( is all it took to keep sweetbreads from ever being popular with me. Actually, just the idea that they are recommended by someone who writes an "Offal of the Week" feature is enough to permanently take them off my plate.

On the off-chance that, despite my warnings, you are willing to take Ryan at his word, and if the picture from his blog doesn't make you queasy, give this recipe a try. Don't say I didn't warn you.



1 pair calf sweetbreads
1 TBS. minced onion
3 TBS. butter
3 TBS. flour
3/4 cup dry white wine or chicken broth
1/2 tsp. kitchen bouquet
1/2 cup light cream
1 3-oz. can sliced, broiled mushrooms [never heard of these!]
1 cup julienne sliced cooked ham
1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
1/8 tsp. dry mustard

Cover sweetbreads with water, let stand 15 minutes. Carefully remove thin outer membrane [remember to be artful!]. Place in saucepan and cover with cold water, adding 1 tsp. salt and 1 TBS. vinegar per quart. Bring to boil with TCTB dial set at 225 degrees F. Reset dial to 200 degrees and simmer 15 minutes. Drain; plunge sweetbreads into ice water. Cook onion in butter with TCTB dial set at 275 degrees F. Stir in flour. Add wine, kitchen bouquet, cream and mushrooms. Reset dial to 212 degrees F. Cook and stir until sauce thickens. Add ham, seasonings and quartered sweetbreads. Heat thoroughly. Makes 4 servings.

May 10, 2011


Today's recipe is a whole new culinary concept for me. In March, we featured a frightening food sandwich filling that included ground salami, and that was bad enough.  But today's recipe takes it to another level.  You know how people say that if you want to enjoy sausage, don't watch it being made? This recipe makes me suspect that you don't want to watch the reverse process either. I have always thought of a French Dipped Sandwich as a sandwich of roast beef, on a hard roll, with a little au jus for dipping. Well, our friends at the United Gas Improvement Company have a very different idea.  No roast beef, no hard roll, no au jus. More like French toast, but with a bad surprise at the center.

How do you like this for the first 2 words of a recipe - "Grind frankfurters"? Great visual, huh?

FRENCH DIPPED SANDWICHES [or, How to Feed Four People with Two Hot Dogs and an Egg]

2 frankfurters
1/2 cup grated American cheese
1/2 cup chopped ripe olives
2 TBS. mayonnaise
8 slices bread
1 egg
1/3 cup milk
2 TBS. melted butter or margarine
1/8 tsp. salt

Grind frankfurters; combine with cheese, olives and mayonnaise. Spread on 4 slices bread. Top each with another bread slice. Beat egg lightly, blend in milk, butter and salt. Turn into flat dish. Dip both sides of each sandwich quickly in egg mixture and place on hot greased griddle. Brown both sides, turning once. Makes 4 thick sandwiches.

The New Gas Cookbook, United Gas Improvement Company, Milliken Publishing, 1961

Frightening Food Investigative Report #1

Some people will try any dish that includes sausage, and among those people is my husband.  So at his request, and even though I felt it was clearly a frightening food, I made the Grapefruit Hot Potato Salad featured in the 5/1 post, "Grapefruits Galore". I'd describe the result as less-than-satisfying, kind of like a somewhat dry German potato salad with sausage. Not great, but not bad until you toss in those grapefruit sections.

Conclusion: "I wouldn't care if I never ate that again."

Do you have a nomination for a test-worthy recipe from our archives?

Now You're Cooking with Gas!

Are you familiar with that expression?  I don't know if it's Pittsburgh-ese or if it's known more widely; if it isn't familiar - it means you are really on a roll, going strong. The United Gas Improvement Company (great name!) seemed to think that consumers needed a little help cooking with gas on their new "Gold Star" ranges, so they created "The New Gas Cookbook." The preface tells us, "To earn the Gold Star, each range must be proved better, in at least 28 ways." What is the significance of 28? And how is it proved? These questions must remain unanswered, but we are assured, "Only the finest of ranges, regardless of maker, earn the Gold Star of proven quality. It's your assurance that you are getting the most modern range that money can buy...a range that will stay easier to cook with...year after helpful year." I would like to have a range that will miraculously "stay modern" and one that will be "helpful". I'm trying to picture a range of 1961 vintage that has remained modern....nope. A helpful range...nope. Ah, well, ambitions yet to be achieved.

Yes, I'll get to the recipe in a moment, but first I want you to see the cookbook cover, with all it's iconic touches:
 First, of course, are the dinner-time pearls Mom wears with her turtleneck, and the jumper which is cinched tightly at her 22" waist. Second, the double wall oven, set into a stacked stone fireplace. Third, children who dress for dinner and who are eating separately from the adults.  And it raises some questions.  Why such teethy smiles? Why is Mom going to set Suzie's soup down on the canape tray? What is that in the middle of the canape tray? And last, but certainly not least, why do they have a lamppost in the next room?

Surpringly, with a few exceptions (Prune Pudding, Beef Liver en Casserole, Date-topped Cake, and our featured recipes), this is actually a pretty good little cookbook. It was a real bargain in it's time, too - 10 cents for 150 pages of recipes and cooking tips.

Today's feature recipe sounds, at first, like normal fare.  To understand the frightening aspect of this food, you need to visualize the final product - chunks of cheese scattered throughout an omelet, topped with marmalade or jelly. Why couldn't they stop right before the marmalade or jelly part? Or leave out the onion and cheese?  Maybe they were going for that elusive balance of sweet and savory.  In that case, I think that the balance continues to elude them.


4 eggs, beaten
1 TBS. grated onion
1/3 cup flour
1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/3 lb. sharp cheese

Combine first 6 ingredients. Add cheese cut into 1/4" cubes. Pour 1/4 cup amounts of mixture on hot greased griddle; brown well, turning once. Serve with marmalade or jelly. Makes 8 3-inch cakes.

The New Gas Cookbook, United Gas Improvement Company, Milliken Publishing, 1961

Friday's Frightening Food Photo

Fried fish, jauntily displayed in a circle of  "Black-eyed Susans" - pineapple rings with a ripe olive in the center.  Because pineapple and olives go together like chocolate and peanut butter. What? You disagree?

May 6, 2011

Friday Frightening Food Photo

What is it?

Tapioca - The Yolk's On You!

As I've mentioned before, I'm a great afficionado of judging foods by "mouth-feel".  Tapioca is one food that scores very high on the mouth-feel scale; smooth yet lumpy, with a mild taste that doesn't overwhelm.  I have to admit, though, that I have never considered whipping up a batch of tapioca so I could put it in my omelet. Obviously a failure of imagination on my part, because here it is on page 13 of 300 Ways to Serve EGGS - Tapioca Omelet. Just makes your mouth water, doesn't it?


3/4 cup milk
2 TBS. quick-cooking tapioca
1/2 tsp. salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
1 TBS. butter
4 eggs, separated

Scald milk. Add tapioca, salt and pepper. Cook 20 minutes in a double boiler, stirring occasionally. Add butter and beaten eggs yolks. Fold in stiffly beaten egg whites. Pour into hot buttered skillet and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes Serves 4.

300 Ways to Serve EGGS, Frances Troy Northcross in collaboration with the Culinary Arts Institute, Consolidated Book Publishers, 1940.

May 5, 2011

That's Using Your Noodle!

Do you enjoy eating a nice fluffy omelet with  a tasty filling? No? Then this is your lucky day! Today's incredible inedible egg recipe tells you how to avoid all that light fluffiness and add the chewy sensation that omelets so often lack.  The secret?  Noodles. Editor Frances Northcross suggests serving this dish with a side of applesauce.  I'd recommend setting aside the noodly omelet and sticking to the applesauce. She offers a similar recipe for Egg Noodle Ring, with eggs and noodles baked in a ring mold. Frances suggests filling the center with creamed fish, eggs or fowl, possibly to add a little wet blandness to accompany the dry blandness of the molded eggs while simultaneously getting rid of those soon-to-expire leftovers at the back of the fridge.  Doesn't it look great, too? 


1 cup broken noodles
1/2 cup butter
3 eggs, well-beaten
Salt, pepper

Cook noodles in boiling salted water 10 minutes. Drain well. Heat butter in a skillet, add noodles and brown lightly. Season eggs with salt and pepper. Stir into noodles and cook slowly until eggs are firm. Serve with applesauce. Serves 6.


1/4 pound  noodles
3/4 cup cream
3 eggs, lightly beaten
Fine dry bread crumbs

Cook noodles in boiling salted water. Drain; add cream and eggs. Butter a ring mold and dust with crumbs. Pour noodle mixture into mold and set in pan of hot water. Bake in moderate oven (350) for 45 minutes. Unmold on hot platter and fill center with creamed eggs, creamed fish, or fowl. Serves 6.

300 Ways to Serve EGGS, Frances Troy Northcross in collaboration with the Culinary Arts Institute, Consolidated Book Publishers, 1940.


May 3, 2011

Limpid Pools of Cucumber Jelly

I don't recall ever hoping to eat a spoonful of anything that could be described as 'limpid'. Perhaps that explains the difference between what I think is tasty vs. what editors of vintage cookbooks seem to consider a real treat. Today's frightening food is Stuffed Eggs in Cucumber Jelly.  Not cucumbers in jelly - jelly made from cooked and sieved cucumbers. The mental picture of the slop that would result from that step alone qualifies this as a frightening food. This recipe offers a variation, too - Stuffed Eggs in Tomato Jelly. The exciting addition in the tomato version is an anchovy curled on top of the egg filling, which will be visible through the 'limpid exterior' of shimmering red jelly, much like a tiny shark swimming in a little pool of blood. Yum. The real crime in both of these recipes is that they take a perfectly good version of deviled egg and coat it in slime, thus making it inedible.


2 large cucumbers
3/4 cup cold water
1 TBS. unflavored gelatin
1/4 tsp. onion juice
1 tsp. lemon juice
3 Picnic Eggs, cut crosswise (recipe follows)

Pare, slice and cook cucumbers in 1/2 cup of cold water until tender.  Force through a sieve, measure, and add enough water to make 2 cups. Soften gelatin in remaining water (1/4 cup). Dissolve in hot cucumber mixture. Cool. Add remaining ingredients. Chill until mixture starts to thicken. Cover bottom of individual molds with 1/4 inch of jelly. Chill. When nearly firm, place 1/2 stuffed egg, cut side down, on gelatin in each mold. Cover with remaining jelly and chill until firm. Unmold and serve on lettuce. Serves 6. 


Soften 1 tablespoon of gelatin in 1/4 cup cold water. Dissolve in 2 cups of tomato juice and add 1/2 tsp. of salt. Use as above. Add minced onion to yolks of Picnic Eggs. Press a curled anchovy into center of each yolk. Add chopped olives to egg yolks. 


4 hard cooked eggs
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. dry mustard
Dash cayenne
1 tsp. vinegar
1 TBS. melted butter.

Cut eggs into halves. Remove yolks and mash. Combine with remaining ingedients. Refill the whites with mixture. (If desired, add 3 drops onion juice or 1 TBS. mayonnaise or Thousand Island dressing).

All recipes from: 300 Ways to Serve EGGS, Frances Troy Northcross in collaboration with the Culinary Arts Institute, Consolidated Book Publishers, 1940.

May 2, 2011

The Incredible, Inedible Egg

A new aquisition from the library book sale is the inspiration for this weeks' blog feature - egg recipes.  Last night while we watched HGTV (yes, we're addicted) Margo and I started skimming through the cookbooks I had stuffed into my $4.50-for-everything-you-can-fit-into-it bag.  We found tons of awful and/or hilarious recipes, so I can promise LOTS of new frightening foods will be coming your way!  The cookbook that supplies the wonderful egg concoctions we'll feature this week is 300 ways to serve EGGS (Frances Troy Northcross in collaboration with Culinary Arts Institute, Consolidated Book Publishers, 1940), a book that afforded us lots of yucks - both in the sense of laughter, and as in "Oh, yuck!". Casey was listening in, and when he heard the recipe for Root Beer Egg Shake, he lobbied hard to have it featured as our first recipe this week. I think it's the totally unexpected addition of OJ that makes this raw egg drink worthy of the title frightening food.


1 egg, beaten
2 teaspoons sugar
1/2 tsp. root beer extract
1/4 tsp. salt
2 TBS. cream
3 TBS. orange juice
1 cup milk
Combine chilled ingredients and shake or beat thoroughly.  For 1.

May 1, 2011

Grapefruits Galore (In All the Wrong Places)

Since the family is in the office working at our various computers, I asked for opinions on the next featured recipe.  Tutti Frutti Stuffed Tomatoes?  Or Hot Grapefruit, Ham and Cabbage Salad?  As Margo scanned the page I had opened, she noticed that I had failed to include Grapefruit Hot Potato Salad, which she nominated for worst.  Once I realized that the ingredients include sweet Italian sausage, I had to agree with her choice.  This is another selection from the fine folks who brought you the recipes in my "Wheel of Fruit" post.  Somebody's brother-in-law must have been working for the Florida Citrus Marketing Board, because specifically 'Florida' citrus fruits show up in the most improbable recipes throughout the 300 Sensational Salads (Lucinda Hollace Berry, Ventura Books, 1982). Since the many wonderful uses of grapefruit sections have possibly escaped you, as they have me, I am including two recipes in this post.  Now you can begin to build your repertoire of recipes featuring grapefruit in all the wrong places.

Grapefruit Hot Potato Salad

1 pound Italian sweet sausage, cut into 1" slices
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/2 cup chopped parsley
4 1/2 tsp. flour
1/2 tsp. salt
2/3 cup Florida grapefruit juice
2 TBS. vinegar
1/2 cup water
4 cups sliced, pared, cooked potatoes
2 cups Florida grapefruit sections

Brown sausage in a large skillet over medium heat.  Add onion and parsley and cook until onion is tender.  Blend in flour, sugar and salt. Stir in juice, vinegar and water.  Bring to a boil, stirring constantly; add potatoes and cook over low heat 15 minutes.  Add grapefruit sections and heat. YIELD: 4 servings

Hot Grapefruit, Ham and Cabbage Salad

2 TBS. butter or margarine
1/3 cup chopped onion
1 1/2 TBS. flour
1 TBS. sugar
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. pepper
1 TBS. prepared mustard
1 cup Florida grapefruit juice
2 TBS. cider vinegar
1/4 cup water
2 cups diced cooked ham
1 cup chopped walnuts
4 cups thinly shredded cabbage
2 cups Florida grapefruit sections

In large skillet melt butter. Add onion and cook until tender. Blend in dry ingredients and mustard. Stir in juice, vinegar and water. Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly. Stir in ham, walnuts and cabbage; cook 10 minutes. Add grapefruit sections and heat.  YIELD: 4 servings