Old Cookbooks

For the ladies who lunch

Besides the enchantment the authors of Good Housekeeping Menus For A Whole Year Of Dinners have with meat-filled meat, they also have an overarching fondness for combining other types of ingredients one never before thought to combine. 


Did you quickly realize those are chunks of crab meat mixed into the rice and pineapple? Olives, too, of course, and a creamy bottle dressing. French, back before (American) French dressing turned into a bright red syrupy affair. How you can tell this is for supper and not brunch is that there is no coconut in it. I feel certain that if it were to be eaten earlier in the day, or perhaps for a party, coconut would have been introduced as a special flavor sensation. 

The "Cream of Mongole" soup is fascinating. I can't decide if awful or not, to combine pea soup with tomato soup. I applaud the addition of sherry, no question there. It's actually a thing, though; the GH people didn't make it up. (More on recipes they adapted from "tradition," later.)

This meal, as you see, was to be served with buttered broccoli and French bread, and a jelly roll for dessert. Not certain if the colon would be refreshed or merely confused, but it's definitely a menu for every woman over the age of 55 back in 1971. My grandma would have been nuts for this stuff. 

Little garnish, little glory, big surprise

One of my favorite blog pasttimes in the, er, past, was to share photos and recipes from my old cookbook collection. You can see some of them at the previous incarnation of this page, linked in the top post. They're from many years ago, and got dragged from blog to blog for awhile. 

While researching for NaNoWriMo this weekend, I was perusing a book which is always mentioned in my stories, Good Housekeeping Menus For A Whole Year Of Dinners, from 1971, and rediscovered this gem to share with you. There are no olive eyeballs or carrot curls gracing the dish, but it's pretty weird just the same.  Rollupsphoto

Let's discuss this. Don't cheat and click on the thumbnail first! You can tell that's ham, right? It has a sort of ham color and texture, and there are cloves in it if you weren't sure. It's surounded by fruits, clearly some of which are grapes. So what might be inside these ham rolls? What goes with ham and fruit? Well, more fruit, perhaps. Maybe a kind of potato or something mildly saucy or cheesy, knowing it's 1971. I'll reveal more and tell you that the other fruits in the dish are canned apricots, peaches, and pineapple. The fresh grapes are "optional."

Maybe there's a type of spicy bread stuffing in the ham? That goes well with fruit. 


You could say it's a spicy bread stuffing. The kind called meatloaf. Made with ground beef. 

Inside of ham. 

I think what happened is that someone thought of the name Ham-burger Roll-ups first, as a sweet pun, and then invented the recipe to go with it. The ham is the bun! Get it? 

Me, either.