midcenturymeals

1950's and 60's meals, memories and trivia

Sunshine and Meatloaf…a perfect Sunday!

Wow, day number three..sunny and almost warm. I should be blogging about picnics and BBQs but I am unprepared. Our winter has been so cold and wet and snowy and…well you get the drift, that I only have blogs and pictures prepared for hearty warm comfort food. Speaking of hearty comfort food, how about meatloaf? Does that evoke memories of a mid-century childhood or what? I actually didn’t care for meatloaf when I was young. Think about the name. “Meat” and “Loaf”. There is something not quite right about that. Having said that, my palate, which should have become more sophisticated as I aged, now adores “meat” and “loaf”. Fortunately, so do my boys.

Isn't this the reason we make meatloaf?

Not only is it great with mashed potatoes at dinner time, but is there anything better than meatloaf sandwiches? Good old fashioned soft “Wonder” bread, (though I now use whole grain white if I use white at all), and tons of ketchup slathered all over. I don’t eat ketchup on any other meat, but I couldn’t imagine meatloaf without. A little tip: When you make your sandwich, spread butter or mayo on the bread before you put the ketchup on. They will act as a raincoat and prevent the bread from soaking up the ketchup.

Ingredients for a double batch.

This recipe has carrots in it. Weird, huh? I found this recipe many years ago in an old cookbook I bought at a flea market in Georgia. It called for the carrots to be sliced lengthwise. You put half the meat in the loaf pan, then the carrots, and then the rest of the meat. It was delicious, but the carrots cut the loaf in half and you didn’t get those nice compact slices of meat. I decided to try grated carrots, and it was really good. I won’t tell you this is the best recipe ever, that is personal opinion. However, although my husband loves spicy meatloaf, he and my boys love this recipe! I think there may be as many variations on meatloaf as there are people on the planet. (Slight exaggeration but close!) You can leave out the carrots but the meatloaf seems more moist and they add a touch of sweetness.

I will freeze the mini loaves.

When I make meatloaf, I always double the recipe. I did that this time and the pictures will show how much I ended up with. I froze the mini loaves. I baked all my loaves in my well- seasoned Pampered Chef bakers, but it works in any type of loaf pan. When I was in a hurry once, I made them in a 9×9 baker. It cooked quicker because it wasn’t as thick. One more thing to try? Baking your meatloaf in muffin tins. Then you get darling individual meatloaves. Just cut the baking time to about 30 min. Speaking of the pictures, I took 32 of them. It finally dawned on me that meatloaf is not pretty! Hopefully you can get past that and try this unique recipe!

For crispy bacon, broil after baking. You can substitute a ketchup "frosting" for the bacon.

Country Meat Loaf

Serves 4-6

1 lb. ground beef

½ lb. pork sausage

1 medium onion, finely chopped

¾ cups old-fashioned rolled oats, (not instant)

½ cup shredded carrots

½ cup ketchup

1 egg, lightly beaten

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon salt

Dash pepper

4 slices of bacon

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. In a large bowl, combine all ingredients except bacon. Mix well. I find using my hands works best. Press the meat mixture into an 8×4 loaf pan. Place bacon strips on top of the meatloaf. Bake for 60 minutes.

Did You Know???  On May 29, 1953, Edmund Hillary and Tenzing Norgay are the first people to reach the summit of Mt. Everest, the world’s highest peak.

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Celebrate the Sun with Creamy Berry Fizz!

Creamy!

I was going to save this recipe for later this Spring, but today was about 50 degrees and the sun was shining for the first time in quite a while. The daffodils (my very favorite flower), were blooming in all their glory and I have been infected with Spring Fever! So….. you are getting the recipe for one of my favorite drinks of all that I tried from my mid-century cookbooks. I have many more to test, but for now this is my fave!

Fizzy!

For those of you who were around during the 50′ and 60’s, can you recall a holiday gathering or a party of any kind that didn’t include a punch bowl full of some creamy delight? It usually consisted of a fruit juice, sherbet or ice cream and a bubbly soda, (or Champagne if it was an adult party!) This is one of those textbook mid-century punches.  I have broken the recipe down to single servings as well. You can double, triple, etc. I have also made this nearly sugar free though s.f. cream soda is tough to find. If you want to make a punch but don’t have a punch bowl, you can go to almost any thrift store and find punch bowl and glasses for around $10.00. If you are really good, you can find them for less! I have not paid over $7.00 and have several different patterns. When I get bored, I donate them back and buy new ones!

I can’t emphasize enough what a wonderfully refreshing drink this is. I should say a great summer drink, but I don’t let the seasons dictate what I eat and drink. Pumpkin pie in July, barbeque ribs in November, Creamy Berry Fizz in March! You can replace the frozen strawberries and sherbet with frozen raspberries and raspberry sherbet if you prefer. I personally love the original recipe myself. Everyone else who tried this LOVED it as well!  As I said above, you could replace the bubbly soda (in this case cream soda), with Champagne or if you want to really step it up…vodka maybe? This is wonderfully versatile, positively delicious and so very mid-century!

Creamy Berry Fizz

Serves 16

4 c. unsweetened pineapple juice

2- 10 oz. pkgs. frozen strawberries

1 qt. vanilla ice cream, softened

1 qt. pineapple or tropical fruit sherbet, softened

4 c. cream soda

Combine first 4 ingredients in large mixing bowl. Stir with a whisk until blended, or you can use a blender. Slowly pour in cream soda. Whisk or pulse one more time. Pour into tall glasses or a large punch bowl.

Single Serving

1/3 c. unsweetened pineapple juice

3 Tbls. frozen strawberries

3 Tbls. vanilla ice cream

3 Tbls. pineapple or tropical fruit sherbet

1/3 c. cream soda

Follow directions above.

In 1953, a company that began in 1917, The French Sardine Co., became Star-Kist Foods. Charlie the Tuna swam his way into our hearts in 1961.

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Saucy Corned Beef

Yum!!

I don’t know why I feel like it is imparative I celebrate St. Patrick’s Day. I am about 1/16th Irish. Maybe it is because I love the color green. Or perhaps because I love a good dark beer…Guinness, of course. (Green beer doesn’t excite me…) I love Irish pub bands, “Gaelic Storm” in particular. (Check them out on YouTube!) Irish history is fascinating and the people are wonderful. Does all this make me full blooded Irish? No, but I am going to pretend for a day, like most of the rest of America. That is why I am posting this recipe. One more way to feel Irish for the day!

Luv my Le Creuset Dutch oven!

This is not your typical corned beef recipe. I was raised with the basic boiled corned beef brisket. The one that cooks for hours in the pot then put on a plate and smothered in mustard. One of my sons was NOT a fan! Then great auntie Phyllis, one of the most amazing women I ever knew, gave me this recipe to try. Now this is a favorite of the entire family. I remember absolutely refusing to eat corned beef when I was young. If only I could have poured this sauce over it! You decide if you would like to add the potatoes, carrots and cabbage to the pot. I love the veggies cooked with the brisket. You have some latitude when it comes to the weight of the meat so I didn’t put anything specific in the recipe. It will work with almost any size prepackaged corned beef. Make one large enough for leftovers. This makes a great sandwich the next day!  I posted a day early so you have time to run out and get your corned beef in time for tomorrow. Erin Go Bragh…Ireland Forever!

Saucy Corned Beef Brisket

Serves 4+

 

1 Corned Beef Brisket

**********

1 cup brown sugar

¾ cup + 1 tablespoon ketchup

The delicious sauce.

2 tablespoons prepared mustard

2 tablespoons vinegar

2 tablespoons canola oil

6 whole cloves

Trim excess fat from the corned beef. Place in a large Dutch oven and just cover the meat with water. Simmer on the stove top for approximately 3 or 4 hours OR bake in the oven at 350 degrees until corned beef is tender. For sauce, combine remaining ingredients in a small saucepan and simmer for 10 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent burning. This sauce recipe can easily be doubled, tripled, etc. (I ALWAYS double it!)Slice the meat against the grain.

Bubbling in the oven with the sauce. So tender after 4 hrs in the pot, it is falling apart!

When corned beef is tender, you can do one of 2 things:

  1. Place corned beef in a baker and cover with sauce. Bake at 400 degrees until sauce is baked on, 15-20 minutes
  2. If you are in a hurry, just slice corned beef and pour sauce over the meat or serve it on the side. Either way is awesome!

 Did You Know???   The Beverly Hillbillies, Bonanza, The Dick Van Dyke Show, Petticoat Junction, and Andy Griffith were the most popular T.V. shows of 1963.

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Bunnie’s Beef Brisket

Notice the "grain" running left to right diagonally? You would cut opposite the grain for the meat to be tender.

My husband played 18 years in the N.F.L. He played in Seattle for 9 years, Atlanta, 4 years, Pittsburgh, 4 years and Philadelphia, 1 year.  All were exceptional cities but we were really crazy about the South. We moved to Suwanee, Georgia, (suburb of Atlanta), from Woodinville, Washington, (suburb of Seattle), in 1991 and stayed until 2000. During that time when Norm played in Pittsburgh, we would rent a place for the season, keeping our permanent home in Georgia. His parents would stay with us throughout the football season, their home being in Garden Grove, California. During those years in Pittsburgh while I was chasing 3 little boys, my mother-in-law would do much of the cooking. She shared some wonderful recipes that were very retro. These were dishes she fed her own boys as they were growing up in the 60’s. (No, girl’s do not run in this family’s genes, with the exception of my niece Paige Marie!) Fortunately I recorded many of the recipes she shared during that time and now, more than ever, appreciate them for their simplicity and flavor! This is one of them.

When I made this the other day, I was in a hurry and had already cooked several meals to test and photograph. I accidentally put in two 12 oz. bottles of beer instead of 2 cups of beer. This is one of the reasons that, before you start, remember “mis en plac” or “everything in its place.”  Measure out and set aside all your ingredients before you start. Anyway….both beers were ales so a bit more robust than a lager. I must say, I got lucky and it was a pleasant mistake. You may want to first try this with cups of beer and then increase from there if you wish. When you pull it out of the oven after 3 hrs. you may not think it is tender enough. The meat doesn’t “fall apart” when it is done. Try a bite of the meat. If it isn’t chewy, it is done. Be sure to slice it against the grain. If you aren’t sure what this is, slice a small piece both ways. You will know right away which way is agaist the grain. It is much easier to chew!

Yesterday, I pulled out the leftovers and took a bite of the beef while it was cold. It was delicious! I then chopped it up and put it on a bun with a little extra sauce, for a brisket sandwich made similar to a pulled pork sandwich. It is great warm OR cold. This is one of those recipes that is better on day 2 and 3! If you end up with more than you can use, this also freezes well. So versatile!

Before the sauce is cooked over the meat.

Bunnie’s Beef Brisket

Serves 4-6

Beef Brisket, (any size brisket at the market will work. They are typically 2-3lbs)

2 cups ketchup

2 cups beer (a lager or ale is preferred)

2 cups sliced mushrooms

Salt and Pepper

Cut excess fat from brisket. Whisk together ketchup and beer. Mix in mushrooms. Set aside. Place meat in a roasting pan or baker and cook meat uncovered in oven for 1 hour @ 325 degrees. Remove meat from oven and pour ketchup mixture over the brisket. Bake 2 more hours or until meat is tender. When you slice this, remember to slice against the grain. It will make it much more tender. Salt and pepper to taste if desired.

After...YUM!

Did you know???  In 1965, Shake ‘n Bake was born. It was promoted as a healthier and easier way to make “fried” chicken, without the frying.

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Celebrate Daylight Saving Time with Pizza Salad!

Spring forward tonight!

Tomorrow morning at 2:00 a.m., it is that time of year that we change our clock by one hour. “Spring forward, Fall back.” I wondered how this custom started and in my research, discovered the mid-century era has a connection! Many people credit Benjamin Franklin for coming up with the idea originally, but others say that is inaccurate. They say it was a man named George Vernon Hudson of New Zealand who originally proposed it in 1895. In 1918, the U.S. adopted Daylight Saving Time, (NOT Savings with an S). Prior to the U.S., Germany and then a number of European nations adopted it. It was very unpopular and the U.S. abolished it right after WWI,. Several states continued to observe it. FDR reinstated it and called it, “War Time.” After the war it was up to the individual states to decide if they wanted to continue. This led to much confusion and so the “Uniform Time Act of 1966 became law. (There is the mid-century connection!) That is the DST we know today.

Arizona and Hawaii were exempt from this law. I always wondered why. According to my research, Arizona is exempt because during the summer, AZ is so hot that little is done during the day. People wait to go out until after the sun sets. The last thing they needed was more scorching, summer daylight! Hawaii is exempt because of their position so close to the equator. There is very little difference between the number of summer and winter daylight hours. THERE! Now you know more than you ever cared to know about DST! Don’t forget to turn your clock AHEAD tonight before you go to bed! Now on to the good stuff….Pizza Salad.

Everything in this book is a version of recipes I found in cookbooks dated from 1950 through the 1960’s, or were recipes from my family’s and friend’s mid-century files. Much of what I have written, I remember being served either at home or as a guest somewhere. I found the basis for this salad in one of my mid-century books. I don’t remember anything like this but I love the whole idea. This is a good way to get your tweens and teens to eat salad. They will eat anything with the word pizza attached!

I know the dressing sounds completely bizarre, but it is really good and the salad does taste somewhat like a pizza. I didn’t have tomato soup for the dressing, so I thought I would just replace it with tomato sauce. Don’t do it. I dumped it and ran right out and bought the soup. The dressing is sweeter and much creamier with the soup. Also, though it has nothing to do with mid-century, I MUST share with you something I discovered. Turkey pepperoni!! It tastes just like regular pepperoni and it is much lower in fat! Also, I have used both garbanzo and white kidney beans. We prefer the white kidney beans.

This is both a fun side salad or a nutritious entrée salad as well. I highly recommend you try this and then let me know what you think!

 Pizza Salad

Serves approx. 8 as a side or 4 as a meal

1 head of crisp lettuce, shredded

1 tomato, chopped

1 c. shredded mozzarella cheese

½ c. sliced pepperoni

½ c. sliced black olives

1 c. garbanzo, cannelini or white kidney beans, drained

Pizza Salad Dressing to taste

Stack round pepperoni slices and slice into 3 pieces. In a large bowl, combine all dry ingredients. Toss gently with dressing just before serving.

Pizza Salad Dressing

 ½ c. cider vinegar

¼  c. salad oil

¼  c. water

½ – 10½ oz. can condensed tomato soup

2 tsp. grated onion

2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

2 tsp. sugar

2 tsp. Italian seasoning

 ¼  teas. garlic powder

½ tsp. prepared mustard,

¼  tsp. paprika

Dash salt

Mix in blender

 Happy birthday to Barbie who was introduced March 9, 1959. We are the same age and are both blond. ( Though I think she is a natural blond.) That is where the similarities end! She met her future and long term boyfriend Ken on the set of a t.v. commercial in 1961. According to Wikipedia, his full name is Ken Sean Carson. Barbie is just, “Barbie.”

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Mom’s Shephard’s Pie

As promised yesterday, I am posting my mom’s shephard’s Pie recipe. I decided to do some research on this dish. It was quite interesting and has as many variations than stew or chili. Every family appears to have their own idea of what shepherd’s pie should be. I never thought my mom’s was very authentic, but she nailed it. It is considered a “layer of meat, then a layer of vegetables, topped with creamy mashed potatoes.” That is exactly what this recipe contains.  It just goes to show you,, “Mother knows Best!” Thanks Mom!

1st layer - meat

Shephard’s Pie was first created in the mid- 19th century, in England. It was a take on meat pies, which were enclosed in a pie crust. Essentially, Shephaerd’s pie is a meat pie without the crust! American women became enamored of it 100 years later. With all the conveniences of the middle of the 20th century, it was a quick, inexpensive alternative to stew. Also, the mid-century was the heyday of casserole. This fits nicely into that catagory.

Shepherd’s Pie has many variations. Originally, the meat used was lamb. American cooks use ground beef far more often. Technically, the 2nd layer - veggiesname changes to “Cottage Pie” when beef is used. The meat is cooked in advance to speed up cooking time. The second layer, vegetables, can really be any veggie of your choice. I was raised with green beans, (canned, of course) but a half cup of corn added to the beans would sweeten up the dish. Carrots, peas, onions…almost any vegetable you’d like to use will work. The topping still needs to be some form of mashed potatoes. American cooks began adding tomato sauce, gravy, etc., to moisten up the dish. This is also a wonderful way to use up leftovers. You can use pot roast, steak, sausage, added to whatever veggie you had the night before, and then potatoes. How about left over Thanksgiving dinner. Bottom layer of turkey, turkey-day veggies, left-over gravy poured over that with a layer of mashed sweet potatoes. Yum!

My siblings and I loved this dish, but I remember my mom making it when dad wasn’t coming home for dinner that night. He hated green beans. Now I realize that she could have put anything she wanted in there with or in place of the beans. Was there a method to her madness????

3rd layer - sauce/gravy

Shepherd’s Pie

 1 lb. ground beef, cooked and drained

1- 15oz. can green beans

1- 10.5 oz. can tomato soup, undiluted

2 tsp. garlic powder

Pinch of pepper

1 package mashed potato buds, prepared

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Mix ground beef and green beans in a mixing bowl. Add tomato soup, garlic powder and pepper. Stir to combine. Pour into a casserole dish. Spread mashed potatoes evenly over the top.  Bake for 30 minutes until all ingredients are hot. Remove from oven and dot the potatoes with butter. Sprinkle with paprika as garnish (optional).

Add potatoes, bake and enjoy!

Did you know???    The “Flying Saucer” & “Pluto Platter”, were renamed the “Frisbee” in 1956. The original was made from a pie tin. Yale students would yell “Frisbee!” after “The Frisbee Baking Company” in Bridgeport, Connecticut, when one was thrown, to warn other students.

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Vichissoise (Potato Soup)

 

Prior to World War II, foreign food consisted of the family favorites brought to America by the immigrants. Post World War II, soldiers and sailors brought home with them a taste for food from far away places. In the 1950’s many of the cookbook sets included at least one book that had a “foreign flair.” Vichyssoise popped up in virtually every one of those cookbooks.

I was given this recipe by a dear friend, (Thanks Donna Gay!) She offered it up when I told her about my book. It is an old, tried and true recipe. She says it’s “the best”! Vichyssoise is typically served cold, but my classy bunch likes it hot with shredded cheese, chopped bacon and a dollop of sour cream. It is more like a liquid baked potato to them. (They would riot in France if they ever read this!) It is creamy, delicious, very economical, appropriate for company, and so simple to make. A green salad and a slice of a French Baguette and you can close your eyes and imagine you are seated outside at a little cafe in Paree. Quel magnifique repas!

Vichyssoise (Potato Soup)

Serves 4-6

2 c. boiling potatoes, peeled and cubed

1 c. onions, coarsely chopped

3 c. chicken stock

1 Tbls. butter

¾ c. milk

½ tsp. salt

1/8 tsp. pepper

½ c. cream, light or heavy

In a large saucepan, combine all ingredients except cream. Cover and cook on medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are tender, approximately 15 minutes. Pour into a blender and blend on high until creamy. Don’t over blend or potatoes will become glue-like. Pour into bowl and add cream. Stir. Let cool and place in refrigerator. Vichyssoise is typically served chilled but it is really good warm as well. Serve seasoned croutons on the side. You may add more milk or cream if you prefer it thinner.

Today’s Trivia: In 1952, we were introduced to the extremely versatile Lipton Onion Soup mix.

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Old Fashioned Beef with Vegetable Soup

From this...

This soup is the most wonderful cold weather soup…maybe ever! It is so thick and rich tasting. It is made with cross cut beef shanks which you can find in most grocery stores. It is inexpensive. I also always check the “clearance” meat area. When I see them there, I buy every one they have and freeze them. Either way, you get lots of meat and flavor for very little money.

Yesterday I explained how I came about this recipe. Dr. Gordon Cromwell, my son’s best friend’s dad, suggested I get it from his mom, Jinx. Gordon is a brilliant orthopedic surgeon, so maybe this soup contributed to his brain power growing up! It’s worth a try.

This recipe can be altered to your taste, i.e., add more veggies, or less if you would like. The vegetables can be either medium or large dice. I wasn’t given all the measurements so I tested until it came out right. Jinx says she has difficulty finding beef shank and has to order it from her butcher. I have had no problem finding it. I asked the butcher and they pointed them out. They were cross cut and I took 4 which equaled 3 ½ lbs.  I have another recipe for beef and vegetable soup that is very quick and easy. This is easy though not so quick, but it is the best beef soup I have ever tasted and my family wholeheartedly agrees! If you want more broth, you can add a can of low-sodium broth, but it will change the flavor. Thanks Jinx!!

...to this!!

I prefer to make this the day before we eat it. In the refrigerator, the fat will rise to the top and solidify. I use a small spoon to scrape it off so I can get around the meat and veggies. Then you just reheat and eat! Your soup is low fat and the flavor even more pronounced!

Old Fashioned Beef with Vegetable Soup

Serves 4-6

2 tsp. oil

Beef Shank, 3-4 lbs. (aprox. 4 shanks)

Dash salt and pepper

2 bay leaves

¼ c. celery leaves, chopped

Pour oil in large stock pot. Brown the meat well on both sides then cover with water (I used about 7 cups). Bring to a boil on high heat. Lower heat, cover and simmer for 1 hr.

Add:

1/3 c. onions, chopped

1 large potato, diced

1 large carrot, diced

1 celery stalk, chopped

1/2 c. corn

1-15 oz. can of diced tomatoes, undrained

Simmer covered for 2 to 3 more hours until meat is tender. Add more salt and pepper if needed. If the broth is still a little watery, remove lid and bring to a low boil until the broth has reduced and has the flavor you want. Don’t do this if you are waiting until the next day to eat it. It may end up with the richer flavor from waiting and there will be no need to reduce.

Today’s Trivia: Chrysler Corporation introduced power steering in automobiles. It was called, “hydraguide.”

The next day. Fat accumulation.

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Apricot Pork Chops…and SNOW??

Here in the Pacific Northwest, we get a little snow, most years, but not all. This year we got more than normal, (I think it had something to do with El Nino…or La Nina…or global warming…or maybe none of the above?!) Anyway, tonight, while I was preparing this meal, I looked out the window and it was snowing. Not only was it snowing but we got about 3 inches. February is almost over! It was unusual to say the least, but really beautiful and not enough to cause problems. At least not for me. I was in a cozy, warm kitchen, cooking my heart out! On the menu? Apricot pork chops, mashed potatoes and roasted asparagus.

Pork chops were pretty popular around my neighborhood growing up. You could do a lot of different things with them and they were very economically priced. You can still find them on sale, as I did when testing this recipe, for cheap, cheap, cheap!!  This week pork chops are 1.99lb. at our local supermarket. You’d be hard-pressed to find any meat these days for 1.99lb.

As a child, I grew up thinking pork chops and cream of mushroom soup were meant to be together. As an adult, I rarely ate pork chops, or to be honest, pork anything. Then I found a recipe in an early 1960’s cookbook calling for oranges and pork chops. I didn’t have any oranges, but I had some apricot preserves and dried apricots from another test, so I thought, “Why not?” My new favorite couple? Pork and fruit! I also added dried cranberries, (craisins), mostly for color. They are delicious, but if you don’t have any, that’s O.K., and besides, they aren’t really authentic mid-century! That’s why I didn’t put them in the recipe. Hope you like this combo as much as I do!

Apricot Pork Chops

Serves 4-6

1 Tbls. oil

4 large or 6 medium pork chops

Salt, pepper, garlic powder, to taste

1-14 oz. can chicken broth

1-10 oz. jar apricot preserves, (about 1 1/4 c.)

1 c. dried apricots, ( 1- 6 oz. pkg.), coarsely chopped

1 Tbls. butter   

          *****

¼ c. cold water

2 Tbls. corn starch

 

Cut visible fat off pork chops. Season both sides of the pork chops with salt, pepper and garlic powder. In a large heavy skillet or Dutch oven, on med.-high heat, brown meat in 1 tablespoon oil. When browned on both sides, stir in chicken broth, preserves, apricots, and butter. Cover and simmer for approximately 1 hour or more depending on the thickness of the chop. When tender, remove pork chops to a plate. Turn heat up until juices in pan begin to bubble. Mix water and cornstarch together and slowly pour into pan while stirring. Cook until gravy thickens, 3-4 minutes. Put pork chops back in the pan and heat. This is great over mashed potatoes!

Apricot Pork Chops

I vowed to myself that I would try to post almost daily. Tomorrow may be tough, so I went ahead and posted tomorrow’s post, tonight. If you want the real truth. I wasn’t going to post it until the first thing in the morning, but I accidently hit, “Publish”, and haven’t a clue how to undo! I am such a lost cause.  I DO think I have figured out the picture thing though. That only took me a week…sigh!

Today’s trivia:  In 1966 bell bottoms and mini skirts were the new fad.

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Shrimp New Orleans

Shrimp New Orleans

I would like to say that day by day, I am getting better at this blogging thing. I have no problem with the words, (naturally!), but I am having a heck of time posting the pictures. I get it done with the help of Jarrett (my 21 yr. old), but it still takes about an hour per picture. Seriously!! Anyway, on to one of my family’s favorite recipes from the book. Too bad I hadn’t started this blog thing a few weeks ago. It would have been a great dinner for Mardi Gras. Decorate your table with lots of bright colors, wear a boa and beads to serve and you have an improptu party.

When I found this recipe in a 1963 cookbook, I did some research to find out if this was a one shot wonder or if it was a well know mid-cenury dish. What I discovered was that Shrimp New Orleans is a well known dish. It appears that as long as you add the “holy trinity” to a dish, which is a trio of onions, celery and green bell peppers, and then add a little spice, you can call it “New Orleans” anything! This is really creamy and very flavorful. I will admit that when I make it, I use fat free half and half. Decidedly NOT mid-century. Use regular or cream Sherry. Sherry can be purchased at the grocery store and is very inexpensive. I do NOT recommend cooking Sherry. Too salty and it has preservatives in it.

I would consider this elegant and guest worthy and it only took about 15 minutes to make, start to finish. You can prepare it the day before and it is even more flavorful! The cookbook suggests that it freezes well. I have tried this on both pasta and rice and both work well. I just made this again a week ago. I paid about 5.99 a lb. for 40-51 ct. shrimp. If you wait until the shrimp, (prawns?) are on sale, you have a fancy, delicious and economical meal.

Shrimp New Orleans

Serves 4-6

1/3 c. celery,chopped

1/3 c. onion, chopped

1/3 c. bell pepper, chopped (green, red, yellow..whatever your preference.)

2 Tbls. butter

1 -10 oz. can condensed tomato soup

3/4 c. light cream (Or fat free half and half…shhh!)

1/4 c. Sherry

1 Tbls. fresh lemon juice, (roughly 1/2 small lemon)

1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper

3 c. shelled shrimp

Dash salt

Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Saute celery, onions and bell peppers until tender but not brown, approx. 5-6 minutes. Add soup and stir. Gradually add cream and Sherry. Stir until thoroughly combined. Mix in lemon juice and crushed red pepper. Heat thoroughly. Add shrimp and cook until just opaque, (pink). Serve over rice or pasta.

In 1952, Lipton created the 4 sided tea bag we know and love as the “flow through tea bag.”

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