Note: Published 1961. I refuse to call it vintage if it is younger than I am.
It recently dawned on me that I have amassed a fair collection of BHG "theme" cookbooks from the 1960-1970 era, including this one. Although it contains some horrible post-war food company travesties (canned chicken a la king tarted up with curry powder, anyone?), there are also many shining examples of what used to be called just home cooking but is now referred to as comfort food. Nearly all of the recipes reflect a time when the homemaker had a couple of hours to prepare the evening meal, as well.
Foil-wrapped Steak Supper. Easy oven meal -- you don't even have to brown the meat. Onion-soup mix adds rich flavor.
1 1/2 pounds chuck steak, 1 inch thick
1 envelope onion soup mix
3 medium carrots, quartered
2 stalks celery, cut in sticks
2 to 3 medium potatoes, halved
2 T. butter or margarine
1/2 teaspoon salt
"Tear off 2 1/2 foot length of 18 inch wide foil. Place meat in center; sprinkle with onion-soup mix; cover with vegetables. Dot vegetables with butter and sprinkle with salt.
Fold foil over and seal securely to hold in juices. Place on baking sheet; bake in very hot oven (450°) 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until done. Makes 4 servings.
Note: To cook Foil-wrapped Steak Supper on a barbecue grill, use a double thickness of foil; cook over slow coals."
Tuna-Noodle Casserole. No editorial puffery with this, but it's a classic. Canned tuna, canned soup, and of course the garnish of almonds "for pretty."
6 ounces (about 3 cups) medium noodles
One 6 ½, 7 or 9 ½ ounce can of tuna, drained
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1 cup sliced celery
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup diced green pepper
1/4 cup chopped pimiento
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 can cream of celery soup
1/2 cup milk
1 cup (1/4 pound) shredded sharp process cheese
1/2 cup slivered blanched almonds, toasted (optional)
"Cook noodles in boiling salted water until tender; drain. Combine noodles, tuna, mayonnaise, vegetables, and salt.
Blend together soup and milk; heat through. Add cheese; heat and stir until cheese melts. Add to noodle casserole.
Turn into ungreased 2-quart casserole. Sprinkle with toasted almonds. Bake uncovered in hot oven (425°) about 20 minutes or till bubbly. Makes 6 servings."
6 pieces enriched bread
1 pound bulk pork sausage
1 t. prepared mustard
1 cup (1/4 lb) shredded process Swiss cheese
3 eggs, slightly beaten
1 1/4 cups milk
1/2 cup light cream
1/2 t. salt
1 t. Worcestershire sauce
"Trim crusts from bread; fit bread in bottom of 6 greased individual casseroles*.
Brown sausage; drain off all excess fat. Stir in mustard. Spoon sausage evenly over bread; sprinkle with cheese.
Combine remaining ingredients; pour over cheese. Bake in moderate oven (350°) 25 to 30 minutes or till puffed and set. Trim with flufs of parsley. Serve immediately. Makes 6 servings.
*Or put casserole together in a greased 10 x 6 x 1½ inch baking dish; bake 30 to 35 minutes until set."
The menu recommended by the editors is as follows:
Melon Cup or Tomato Juice
Buttered Green Beans
Cabbage-Celery Slaw Hard Rolls
Persian Peaches Hot Tea
(Persian Peaches are sliced peaches mixed with orange juice, honey, and candied ginger, and served over vanilla ice cream. A BHG cookbook reader might be able to get away with serving breakfast food for supper, but only if it was part of a three-course meal).