Tuna-Cheesettes

Tuna-Cheesettes

A Recipe from preparing foods with Reynolds Wrap pure aluminum foil (195?)

About the Recipe

Imagine a tuna-melt. Now imagine that the tuna salad part has a few more ingredients than it really should. Now imagine that instead of quickly grilling it up, you’ve got to put it on a bun, wrap it in tinfoil, and bake it for a half hour. Voila! The Tuna-Cheesette is born!

This has all of the trappings of a classic post-war recipe – canned ingredients, using a war material for something other than artillery, a vaguely brown and smushy end product that tastes great, but just will not photograph well, no matter how hard you try. It’s worth the effort, though watch the salt levels. Both the husband and the brother commented on how salty the end result was (though it heartily got the husband seal of approval).

Aside from that – enjoy! These are great make-ahead sandwiches, and I could even see them working really well for sticking on charcoal for a camping trip or barbeque.

About the Book

I was so excited to get this booklet along with some of the Culinary Arts and Pillsbury booklets. It’s got great illustrations, and is so illustrative of that particular brand of re-marketing that was happening after the war. The advertising company that decided this booklet was a good idea took great pains to go through literally every use you can possibly imagine for aluminum foil.

The Recipe!

Ingredients:

1/4 lb. processed American cheese, cubed
3 hard cooked egg yolks, chopped
1 7-ounce can tuna, flaked
2 T chopped green pepper
2 T minced onion
2 T chopped sweet pickle
1/2 cup salad dressing
2 T chopped stuffed olives
1/2 t salt
1/8 t pepper
6 hamburger or other thick buns

Directions:

Combine ingredients except buns, mixing lightly. Split buns, spread with softened butter or margarine and fill. Wrap buns in Reynolds Wrap. Place on shallow pan and bake in slow oven (325*F) 35 minutes, until filling is heated and cheese melts. Serve hot.

Eggs, Eiffel Tower

Eggs, Eiffel Tower

A Recipe from Better Homes & Gardens Lunches and Brunches (1963)

About the Recipe

If you’ve been reading my blog for any period of time, you probably know by now how much I love an overcomplicated but delicious breakfast / egg dish. Here’s another one to enjoy!

When I was looking at the recipe on paper, my first thought was that it sounded like a croque Madame – egg, ham, cheese, bread. Simple! But it’s clearly more complicated than that – and the flavor profile you get out of it is more complex as well. It tastes kind of like a quiche Lorraine or an egg hash when all is said and done. The texture is really lovely and surprising. It’s a very light, fluffy dish and everything just comes together when you dig in with a fork.

I used a rustic French sandwich bread for the toast, and a sharp cheddar cheese. This is a recipe that would also be really easy to substitute in other kinds of cheeses and meats with success. Just make sure that your meat can be broken up or speared easily as it gets buried in the ramekin. And of course, if you want a true Parisian taste to go on, go with the deviled ham and some good gruyere.

About the Book

These little Better Homes & Gardens books are such great resources in a kitchen. In the case of this one, you simply pick the lunch or brunch that you’re planning for and there’s a menu ready to go! I’ll go into more details the next time I post on it. For right now, just to give you the flavor of the book, here’s some of the contents:

The Recipe!

Ingredients:

4 rusks or slices dry toast
1 4.5 oz can deviled ham
3/4 cup shredded process cheese
6 egg whites
1/4 t cream of tartar
10 drops bottled hot pepper sauce
Dash salt
1 t prepared mustard
6 egg yolks

Directions:

Cut rusks or toast in rounds to fit in bottom of 4 ramekins or 6-oz custard cups. Butter each rusk; spread with 1 T deviled ham, place in ramekin and sprinkle with 1 T cheese.

Beat egg whites with cream of tartar, hot pepper sauce, and salt till soft peaks form. Place on top of cheese in each ramekin. Top with egg yolks (place 2 egg yolks in 2 of the ramekins). Dot layer with bits of deviled ham (about 1/2 T on each) and sprinkle with 1 T cheese. Top with egg-white mixture.

Repeat layers of ham, cheese, and egg white, building up a peak of egg white mixture. (See picture, above)

Bake in slow oven (325*F) about 30 minutes, or till golden and yolks are of desired doneness. Makes 4 servings.

Zucchini Lasagna

Zucchini Lasagna

A Recipe from The Wonderful World of Cheese (1979)

About the Recipe

With so many cheesy, delicious recipes to choose from out of this book, my husband opted for the lasagna. This is a super simple lasagna recipe, if you’re looking to break the ice and try one for the very first time. The sausage provides a punch of flavor, and the zucchini is timed just right so that it’s slightly crunch, adding great texture to the dish.

The recipe itself kind of tricks you into making a meat sauce – brown the meat and onions, add the tomatoes / sauce and spices, simmer for a bit to let everything blend together. Rather than using their quick sauce, I used this Basic Red Sauce from the New York Times cookbook that’s become a staple in our home. You could absolutely feel free to use your favorite jarred sauce as well for a nice short-cut.

About the Book

This is everything I love about advertising booklets from the 1970’s: Swirly, ridiculous fonts. Weird suggestions on what to do with the product in question. Colored photographs that are supposed to look appetizing, but somehow… miss the mark. It’s a total winner!

This booklet was produced by the American Dairy Association. It eschews the value of a good cheese, and gives a thorough list of the 200 different variations available in the United States in 1979. It’s a total treasure, and came again from the giant box from my cousins. Only fitting, since Becky and I have been munching on cheese together since the beginning of time.

The Recipe!

Ingredients:

1 lb. mild Italian sausage, casing removed
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 can (15 oz.) tomato sauce
1/2 cup water
1/4 t salt
1/4 t oregano
3/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 T flour
8 lasagna noodles, cooked and drained
4 cups zucchini slices, cut 1/4″ thick
12 oz. sliced Mozzarella cheese

Directions:

Brown sausage with onion; drain. Stir in tomato sauce, water and seasonings. Simmer, uncovered, 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Preheat oven to 375*F. Combine Parmesan cheese and flour. Layer half of the lasagna noodles on bottom of buttered 13×9-inch baking dish. Top with half the zucchini, half the Parmesan mixture, half the meat sauce and half the Mozzarella cheese. Repeat layers of noodles zucchini, Parmesan mixture and meat sauce. Bake 20-25 minutes or until zucchini is tender. Add remaining cheese; return to oven until cheese begins to melt. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.

NOTE: Option to use your favorite jarred sauce or make your own with this Basic Red Sauce from the New York Times instead of using ingredients 2-6 above.