After taking last week off due to my son being here, I am back this week with another Vintage Menu to Share with you. I hope that you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed planning and preparing it.
I have always had a great love of Vintage Cookbooks and Vintage Recipes. I had quite a few vintage books when I was in the U.K, but had to leave them there when I came back to Canada. I have been trying to replace some of them since my return.
What is the point of having these books, however, if you never use them and so I am on a quest to cook a full menu from at least one of those books every week, and then share it with you on here. These old recipes remind me very much of my childhood and my mother’s and grandmother’s cooking! Maybe they will do the same thing for you!
I have taken the recipes for this week’s menu from The Good Housekeeping Cookbook. I had ordered the 1955 version as that was the year I was born, but ended up receiving the 1963 version. Its a good book.
I was a bit disappointed that it wasn’t the 1955 version, but I am happy with it and it is in excellent shape. I will keep looking for the earlier version and hope that I can find it. Usually Thrift Books are pretty accurate in the books that they send.
In any case it is in excellent shape for a book published 60 years ago! I was only 8 years old when this book came out!
I tried to put together a real family meal this week, in fitting with what my mother would have made for us when I was a child. This week’s menu consisted of:
BAKED ACORN SQUASH
FRUITFUL COBBLER WITH CREAM
Do you remember in the old Good Housekeeping magazine they used to have a section dedicated to Susan’s recipes? They were always excellent recipes. So just who was Susan?
From the book:
“”Who is Susan? What is she. That all our readers love her” is Good Housekeeping’s paraphrase of the famous old song. Susan is our perennial teenage cook. For nineteen years she has led by the hand, not only teenagers, but cooks and would-be cooks of all ages, through her step by step recipes make cooking a joy with dependable results.”
I figured most people, at least on this side of the pond, would be quite tired of turkey by now and so I picked something which I thought would make a nice change from turkey or a roast dinner of any kind, and be comforting and delicious and a real family meal.
It doesn’t more comforting or familial than Meat Loaf! The recipe for this meat loaf was noted inside the cover in the original owners handwriting, and the recipe itself was annotated with the words “very good.” I don’t think you can get a much better accolade than that!
The original recipe made 8 servings. I did not need 8 servings and so I cut the recipe in half to make four servings. It is your pretty basic meatloaf recipe, but with a few tasty twists. You can double this recipe to feed more people if you wish. It will take slightly longer to bake in that case.
My sister makes very good meatloaf. Hers uses Bisquick. That is her secret ingredient. My father loves it. I confess now that meatloaf was never my favorite meal when I was growing up. I was not fond of ground beef at all.
I did make it for my children when they were growing up, but I always used the recipe from the Fanny Farmer Cookbook. That one I kind of liked. This version here today is very similar to that one and it is very good actually! I rather liked it a lot!
HINTS AND TIPS FOR MAKING MEATLOAF
1. Handle the meat mixture the least amount as possible. Your loaf will be juicier and more tender. Use a gentle touch when mixing and do not pack it tightly into the pan.
2. If you want a soft, moist exterior, bake the meatloaf in a loaf tin. Any juices accumulated can be used to make a gravy.
- 1 cup (60g) fresh soft bread crumbs
- 1/2 medium onion, peeled and finely minced
- 2 heaped spoons of green pepper, finely minced
- 1 large free range egg
- 1 lb. (453g) ground chuck
- 1 TBS of prepared horseradish
- 1 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp dry mustard powder
- 1/8 cup (30ml) whole milk or evaporated milk
- 1/2 cup (123g) tomato ketchup, divided
- Preheat the oven to 400*F/200*C/ gas mark 6. Have ready a small roasting tin.
- Beat the egg slightly in a medium bowl. Add the hamburger meat and mix lightly together. Mix in the bread crumbs, onion and green pepper.
- Add the horseradish, salt, mustard, milk and 1/8 cup (32g) of the tomato ketchup. Mix lightly together and then shape into a loaf or oval shape in the roasting tin. Spread the remaining ketchup on top of the loaf.
- Bake in the preheated oven for 40 to 45 minutes. Cut into slices to serve.
I thought scalloped potatoes would make an excellent side dish for the meatloaf. My mother would have either served them or she would have served mash. It would have always been potatoes of some sort.
Old Time Scalloped Potatoes
- 4 cups (927g) pared and thinly sliced potatoes
- 1 medium onion, peeled and minced (2/3 cup/about 40g)
- 2 TBS plain all purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/8 tsp black pepper
- 2 TBS butter
- 1 1/2 cups (360ml) scalded milk
- paprika to sprinkle on top
- Preheat your oven to 400*F/200*C/ gas mark 6. Butter a 2 QT/liter casserole dish really well.
- Arrange a layer of potatoes in the dish. Top with some of the onions. Mix the salt, pepper and flour together. Sprinkle some of this on top and then dot with butter. Repeat layers until you have used everything up, ending with butter.
- Scald the milk by heating it in the microwave for 1 minute. (in 1963 they would have used a saucepan) Milk is scalded when there are bubbles around the edge of the cup. Pour this over the potatoes in the dish.
- Sprinkle with paprika and cover tightly. Bake for 40 minutes, uncover and bake for 10 to 15 minutes longer until the potatoes are tender and the top is beginning to brown a bit. Serve hot.
Because everything pretty much for this menu was baking in the oven at the same time I decided to do some Baked Acorn Squash to go along with the rest of the meal. If you time things right, everything should be finished about the same time!
What family meal would be complete without a dessert/pudding to finish things off. My father always looks for something sweet to finish. Most of the time he gets sugar free jello with squirty cream.
- 1 pint (2 cups/453g) peeled and sliced peeled peaches, sliced, pared and cored apples or sliced pitted plums
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/2 TBS plain all purpose flour
- 1/4 cup (60g) corn syrup or honey
- 1/2 cup (60g) packaged baking mix such as Bisquick
- 1 TBS sugar
- 1/4 cup (60ml) milk or water
- 3/4 tsp sugar
- Preheat your oven to 400*F/200*C/ gas mark 6. Butter a 1/2 QT/liter casserole dish.
- Toss the fruit together with the flour, salt and corn syrup/honey. Pour into the baking dish.
- Whisk together the baking mix, milk, and 1 TBS sugar. Pour or dot this mixture over top. Sprinkle with the remaining sugar.
- Bake uncovered in the preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes until golden brown and the fruit is tender.
You can make a cherry variation on this by using 1 pint of drained canned red sour cherries for the fruit in the recipe. Use honey instead of corn syrup.
If you wanted to be really fancy you could start off your meal with a glass of chilled tomato juice. I did serve my meatloaf with a chili sauce/chutney. It was really delicious.
Debunking the myths of English Cookery, one recipe at a time.
The English Kitchen
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