There is a fabulous little used bookstore near my house and whenever I visit it, I inevitably leave with an armload of books. They often have fantastic sales, like “all trade paperbacks $2” or “all hardcover books 50% off.” This week, they had every book in the store on sale for $1. One dollar! For any book in the whole store!
I have a bit of a cookbook addiction, and this bookstore happens to have a fairly large section of used cookbooks. Of course, there are rarely any there that have been published within the last decade, but fortunately I happen love purchasing “retro” cookbooks, and that’s exactly what I did:
On the left, the Culinary Arts Institute’s Canadian Family Cookbook, published in 1975. There are 3,000+ recipes in this behemoth, and I would estimate roughly half of those are for dishes I would only eat on a dare. Case in point: page 212 features a recipe for Glazed Stuffed Beef Heart. Yikes. I’m not a picky eater, but just the name of that recipe terrifies me. This book also features a handy “how-to” section at the front, listing common ingredients and methods. Unfortunately, one of the ingredients they list (and include in many of the recipes) is a little substance called Monosodium Glutamate. Yup, MSG. People used to keep it in their homes?? I guess 1975 was a more innocent time when it came to trusting food additives!
In the middle, we have the Yankee Church Supper Cookbook, published in 1991. Is that old enough to be retro? I was in first grade when this one came out… Anyway, this book features recipes contributed by real people for hearty, homey dishes of all kinds. I have a recipe from here called “Chicken Delicious” cooking away in my oven as I type – who could resist a recipe with the word ‘delicious’ in the title? I’ll let you know how it turns out.
Finally, on the right we have Chatelaine’s Adventures in Cooking, published way back in 1969. In it, I’ve found the secrets to throwing really great dinner parties in the 1960s. I’m sure some of those secrets will translate well to the 2010s, right? There are actually quite a few intriguing-sounding international recipes in sections called things like “Translations from the Scandinavian” and “From the Far Pacific.” I can’t wait to try a few of these delightfully retro recipes.
Heading back to the current decade, here’s what happened this week:
What I posted:
- Mocha Coconut Cookies taste like a Starbucks Mocha Coconut Frappuccino!
- Chili Bourbon Meatballs are perfect party food. I took my family’s classic recipe and added a boozy twist.
That’s all folks. I have some reading to do!
Until next time,