Friday, April 26, 2013

Food Friday: Tacos with Ketchup from Illinois

Oh tacos, our family loves them. We often have a taco night where we set up a taco bar with everything that can make a taco great like meat, lettuce, tomatoes, cilantro, onions, guacamole, and sour cream. And of course, glorious shredded cheddar cheese.

Now, everyone has an idea of what makes a great taco. I have spent almost my entire life in Southern California and have traveled to Mexico. I've tasted great tacos. Let's face it, people travel, they like a dish and want to make it for their family but may lack the recipe or even the ingredients to make it like the original.

That's where What's Been Cookin' in Bureau County. Bicentennial Cook Book comes in. I've highlighted this cookbook last year and its recipe for pickled eggs. There's a lot to like about this cookbook from the Ladies of the Bureau County Home Extension Association (1975). Aside from recipes are some history snippets with drawings of historical buildings.

And then there's recipes. I will admit that there's a few that seem very 1970s to me, maybe even 1950s, including one that calls for a lot of cream soup, cheese, pimentos,  noodles and pork. For the sake of the recipe author I won't say more. But then there are the taco recipes, both unattributed so no one needs to worry that I am making fun of anyone.

My favorite instruction has to be to add the cheese and then if it needs color, add ketchup. Ketchup does cover a magnitude of sins. I will say the addition of baked beans is not one I would recommend.

You know, life changes, people grow, tastes mature. These odd recipes serve a purpose. They show us the types of foods made by our families with what they had access to and they show some creativity.

So when you put together those family cookbooks, make sure to add some of the more weird interesting ones. They help tell your family history story.

Friday, April 19, 2013

Food Friday: Pass the Root Beer and Japanese Chop Suey

Today's Food Friday comes from the Woman's City Club Cook Book. Compiled by the Library Committee of the Woman's City Club of Chicago, 1923. This book is available on Internet Archive's Cookbooks and Home Economics Collection.

This cookbook provides us names associated with recipes and no other genealogically relevant information.

It includes a faux recipe, along the lines of what I wrote about last week. This one is specific to Chicago.

Fridays seem to beg for a simple recipe. And no recipe is simpler than this one provided by Sue Seeley.

I've written about American Chop Suey in my book From the Family Kitchen before. This version of Sukiyaki is called Japanese Chop Suey, maybe to give American women some context to better understand it. Sukiyaki is a soup or stew that includes meat and vegetables with soy sauce and sugar. The website Japanese Food has a recipe.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Food Friday: Faux Recipes

Faux recipes  often find their way into community cookbooks. Recipes such as How to Cook Your Husband have been found in community cookbooks for decades.

Spoonful of Joy by the First Baptist Church of Bessemer Alabama has several of these types of recipes. There's a few that involve food while others dictate secrets to a better life.

So in case you need to explain basic cooking skills to the "worst cook" in your family, here's a recipe for Boiled  Water.

Now, if you decide that you need to cook for a large party on your next safari, here's a recipe for Elephant Stew. (And no, I do not condone the hunting or cooking of elephants).

And for those who want to know the secret to raising  children, consider this.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Vintage Recipe Booklets: Jell-O Ice Cream Powder

From the collection of Gena Philibert-Ortega

Friday, April 5, 2013

Food Friday: Doris Keeton's Toast Rolls with Ham and Asparagus

I am always looking for a great book to read. Recently I read about the book The Girls of Atomic City: The Untold Story of the Women who Helped Win World War II by Denise Kiernan. This is the story of the women who worked at Oak Ridge, Tennessee on a then secret project. They later learned that they had been working on the Manhattan Project.

I was interested in this book, besides the interesting topic, because I have a community cookbook written and published by some of the women of Oak Ridge, Tennessee. (To learn more about Oak Ridge and its part in World War II check out the Convention and Visitor's Bureau). You can also check out a previous post I did from this cookbook here.

I love this cookbook, it has everything...  recipes, histories, images, memories, names and family history details. For today's Food Friday I am posting a recipe that's so easy any of us could whip it up as an appetizer but better than the recipe, is the information that accompanies  it.