Tuesday, November 3rd


Tomato Juice 719a

Fried Cornmeal Mush 172 with Syrup 924

Broiled Bacon 544

coffee for adults (milk for children)


Baked Sweet potatoes 1085

whole wheat bread and butter

Raw Apple and Raisin Salad 733 substituted Apple and Peanut Salad 732

tea for adults (milk for children)


Irish Stew 529

bread and butter

lettuce with French Dressing 841

Plain Baked Custard 226 substituted Brown Sugar Custard 227

coffee for adults (milk for children)



Meal Score: 7/10

Notes:  I totally forgot to pre-make the mush so it could coagulate prior to frying.  Whoops!   I did make cornmeal bread (yeast bread with cornmeal) so that’s kind of close?  Meal score negatively affected by having to chug tomato juice but stayed high due to bacon.



Meal Score: 8/10

Notes:  Mmm…  Simple, but satisfying.



Meal Score: 5/10

Notes:  The Irish Stew was pretty bland (but certainly filling).  The salad (jazzed up with uncalled for cucumber and onion wasn’t much to write home about either.  The Brown Sugar Custard was the highlight (though still pretty plain).  Sadly, the picture of the custard is missing, but it went over super well with the husband and toddler.  Overall, satisfying and nutritious, but forgettable.

Overall Score:  6.5/10

732 Apple and Peanut Salad

5 medium-sized eating apples

juice of 1 lemon

1 medium stalk celery, diced

1/2 cup mayonnaise (843)

1/2 cup coarsely chopped peanuts


Peel, quarter, and core apples.  Cut into 1/2-inch dice and sprinkle with lemon juice to prevent discoloration.  Cut celery into small dice.  Add the apples and mayonnaise and toss lightly.  Just before serving, add the peanuts and serve on lettuce leaves, or as a stuffing for peeled whole tomatoes.  5 servings.

529 Irish Stew

1 1/2 lb. lamb shoulder, cut in pieces for stew


3 TBSP butter or bacon drippings


2 tsp. salt

dash pepper

5 medium potatoes, peeled and diced

5 carrots, scraped and diced

1 small onion, sliced

Wipe meat with a damp cloth; dredge thoroughly with flour and brown on all sides in a skillet or Dutch oven in which the butter or drippings had been melted.  Add 1 cup water, cover, and simmer 45 minutes; then add salt, pepper, potatoes, carrots and onion, with 1 1/2 cups more boiling water, and continue simmering until all are tender, about 30 minutes.  Serve piping hot.  If desired, a little chopped parsley may be added just before serving. 5 servings.

227 Brown Sugar Custard

1 1/2 cups evaporated milk

1 1/2 cups water

(can substitute 3 cups milk for evaporated milk and water)

3 eggs

3/4 cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed

1/4 tsp salt

Combine evaporated milk and water and heat to scalding.  Stir slowly into beaten eggs, add brown sugar and salt.  Strain and pour into custard cups which have been set in a shallow pan of hot water.  Bake in a moderately slow oven (325 F) for 30 minutes, or until custard test done.  Serve warm or cold, plain, or with a spoonful of tart jelly on top.  5 servings.


Saturday, December 14th


grapefruit halves

Rolled Oats 168 with top milk

Broiled Bacon 544

toast with butter

coffee for adults (cocoa for children)


Cheese Egg Float 181

head lettuce wedges with French Dressing 841

Stewed Dried Peaches 283

milk for all


Quick Baked Haddock 415

Potatoes O’Brien 1080

Buttered Green Beans 985

Ice Box Rolls 66 and butter

Cranberry Sauce 282

coffee for adults (milk for children)

Breakfast was pleasant. (Bacon!) Speaking of pleasant, I noticed that Meta has defined “Bland” in the glossary as, “having a very mild, pleasant flavor” (902).  Quite a positive definition.  I suppose if this is bland, then I must like bland more than I imagined.

12.14.13 Breakfast

Lunch was served directly to me from my childhood taste buds. 181 Cheese Egg Float was super creamy, cheesy and delicious.  It featured a seasoning I’ve not yet encountered in a Meta recipe:  celery salt.  Good thing I like celery salt because it was a prominent flavor.

12.14.13 Lunch

The warm 283 Stewed Dried Peaches and crunchy lettuce with 841 French Dressing rounded out the meal nicely.  I also reluctantly drank the milk for all. 😦  I prefer milk for children only.

Since I live in the mid-west, the only seafood I can count on finding in the store is salmon and canned tuna.  Unsurprisingly, after visiting three stores, I came up empty on haddock.  I used catfish instead.  Other than that hiccup, dinner was super satisfying.

12.14.13 Dinner

I’d happily eat this exact same meal tomorrow but sadly, there were no leftovers on this one.  Fantastic menu for today.

181 Cheese Egg Float

3 TBSP butter

3 TBSP flour

1 1/2 cups milk

1/2 tsp salt

1 TBSP onion juice

1/2 tsp celery salt

5 eggs

1 cup grated sharp cheese (1/4lb)

5 slices toast, buttered

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Butter a shallow baking dish.  Melt butter and blend in flour.  Whisk in milk and seasonings and cook until the mixture boils and thickens.  Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish and drop eggs onto the surface.  Sprinkle with cheese and bake for 15-20 minutes until eggs are at preferred firmness.  Makes 5 servings.

841 French Dressing

2/3 cup salad oil

1/3 cup cider vinegar

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp sugar (or to suit taste)

1/16 tsp dry mustard

1/16 tsp black pepper

1 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp grated onion (omit for fruit salad)

Combine ingredients and shake thoroughly before serving. Makes about 1 cup.

415 Quick Baked Fish, Spencer Method

2 lbs fish

1/4 cup evaporated milk

1/4 cup water

2 tsp salt

2 cups fine dry bread crumbs

2 TBSP salad oil

This recipe can be used for small whole fish, fillets or thick steaks (cut to 1/2 inch thick).  Heat oven to 500 degrees.  Mix milk, water and salt in a shallow dish.  Dip fish in milk mixture and then coat in bread crumbs.  Put in an oiled baking dish and sprinkle with oil.  Bake uncovered for 10 minutes.  Makes 5 servings.

1080 Potatoes O’Brien

5 medium baking potatoes (2 lbs)

1 TBSP butter

1 medium onion, chopped

1 canned pimiento, chopped

1/2 tsp salt

pepper to suit taste

1 tsp chopped parsley

Wash, peel and dice potatoes into 3/4 inch cubes.  Deep fat fry in 360 degree oil (or pan-fry if preferred) until golden brown.  Drain.  Melt butter in a skillet and saute the onion until soft.  Add the potatoes, pimento and seasoning and cook until hot.  Sprinkle with parsley.  Makes 5 servings.  (I went with the pan-fried method and it turned out beautifully).

Saturday, November 17th


Puffed Raisins 306 on

Hot Rolled Oats 168 with top milk

toast with butter, jelly (Crab Apple Jelly) 704 (substituted apple jelly)


Escalloped Cabbage 1010 with

Broiled Bacon 544

bread and butter

Gingersnaps 199 (save some for Sunday)

tea for adults (milk for children)


Chicken Rice Soup 940

Croutons 61

Pea and Potato Casserole 1061

Carrot and Cabbage Salad 780

bread and butter

Lemon Chiffon Pudding 359

coffee for adults (milk for children)

Have I mentioned yet how much I love breakfast?  This is pretty close to my standard breakfast fare anyway, except for the puffing the raisins (actually quite moist and tasty, but another pan to wash).

11.17.13 Breakfast

I would have cropped out the cat feet, but honestly, this is a pretty standard sight at breakfast.  Boma wakes up very needy and clingy.

Lunch was quite pleasing as well (excuse the upside-downness of the picture since it was either upside-down or sideways; Word Press doesn’t play nicely with my iPhone).

11.17. 13 Lunch

Here’s a close up of the real star anyway, 1010 Escalloped Cabbage:

1010 Escalloped Cabbage

Look how toasty those breadcrumb are!  Mmmmm….  The only downside was that this did take five pans to make (one to toast the breadcrumbs in butter, one to cook the bacon, one to boil the cabbage, one to make the white sauce and one to bake the whole casserole in).  How much time did Meta spend washing dishes?  Thank god for my dishwasher.  Anywho, it was super tasty.

756 Orange Waldorf Salad was a bit odd in that Meta called for slicing the orange into fifths and putting the Waldorf Salad portion on top of it.  This seemed like an odd step instead of mixing it in with the rest (which I did with the leftovers).  However, 199 Gingersnaps was a home-run so I declare lunch a success.

Dinner featured another casserole, 1061 Pea and Potato Casserole (who doesn’t love a nice butter and cheese-laden casserole?)

1061 Pea and Potato Casserole

And here’s Meta’s version:


Mine didn’t look quite as nice.  The cheesy pea mixture overran my potato mountain and I ran out of potato topping to finish the lattice topping.  Ah well.  I never suspected I’d use a cake decorating set to pipe potatoes anyway.

Here is dinner after plating:

11.17.13 Dinner

940 Chicken Rice Soup was pretty basic but pleasing. I’ve stashed the rest in the freezer in preparation for the onset of a winter cold.  780 Carrot and Cabbage Salad had the unexpected addition of sweet pickle relish. The first bite was a bit jarring but the odd flavor grew on me with each bite.  I dare say I would even make it again.

Confession:  I didn’t feel like making dessert so I skipped it.  Otherwise a rather tasty Meta day.

1010 Escalloped Cabbage

1 small head cabbage (2 to 2 1/2 lbs)

2 cups thin white sauce (919)

1/2 green pepper, chopped

1 cup grated sharp cheese

1/2 cup buttered bread crumbs (1118)

3 slices half-cooked bacon

Trim cabbage, cut into eights and remove the core.  Cook, uncovered, in boiling, salted water for eight minutes.  Drain.  Layer half of each item in a buttered casserole dish:  cabbage, white sauce, green pepper and cheese.  Repeat with other half.  Sprinkle with bread crumbs and bacon.  Bake in a 375 degree oven for about 15 minutes.  Makes 5 servings.

1118 Buttered Bread Crumbs

Melt 1 1/2 to 2 TBSP of butter in a saucepan.  Add 1/2 cup of dry bread crumbs and stir until crumbs are coated in butter and slightly toasted.

199 Gingersnaps

2 1/2 cups AP flour

1/2 cup shortening

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup molasses

1 egg, beaten

1 1/2 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp ground cinnamon

1/4 tsp ground nutmeg

1/8 tsp ground cloves

1/2 tsp soda

1 TBSP water

1 tsp vinegar

Cream shortening.  Add in sugar and then molasses and egg.  Beat thoroughly.  Mix spices with soda, hot water and vinegar (I wish I knew what this step was for other than feeling like a mini-mad scientist since I’ve never seen it in modern recipes!)  Stir into butter mixture then mix in flour until smooth.  Drop by teaspoon onto a buttered baking sheet.  Bake 10 minutes at 375 degrees.  Makes 4 to 5 dozen (Really? I made 2 dozen, but I did use a one ounce cookie scoop).

1061 Pea and Potato Casserole

2 lbs potatoes

1/4 cup butter

1 cup hot milk, divided

3/4 tsp salt

1 No. 2 tin peas (1 lb, 4 oz or 2 1/2 cups)

3 TBSP butter

5 TBSP four

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 lb sharp cheese, diced

1 egg yolk

1 TBSP milk

Scrub and peel potatoes.  Cook in boiling water salted with the 3/4 tsp of salt.  Drain (saving liquid).  Mash and whip the potatoes with 1/4 cup butter and 1/2 cup of the hot milk.  Drain peas (saving liquid).  Make a white sauce with the 3 TBSP of butter, flour, 1/2 cup of hot milk, 1/4 tsp salt and the liquid from the peas and potatoes.  Stir in the cheese until melted and smooth and add the peas.  Spread 2/3 of the mashed potatoes in a casserole dish and pour the pea mixture in the center.  Pipe the remaining potatoes in a lattice (or drop by tablespoon in puffs).  Beat the egg yolk and one tablespoon milk and brush on top of the potatoes.  Brown in a 400 degree oven.  5 generous servings.

780 Carrot and Cabbage Salad

5 medium carrots

2 cups shredded cabbage, firmly packed

1/2 green pepper, chopped

1/3 cup mayonnaise

2 TBSP sweet pickle relish or chopped sweet pickles


Grate the carrots and combine with the cabbage, pepper, mayo and relish.  Serve on lettuce.  Makes 5 servings.

November 6th


Baked Apple 267

Broiled Bacon 544

toast with butter, jelly (Grape Jelly) 709

Coffee for adults (milk for children)


Onion Soup 968


Molded Peach Salad 759

Cocoa for All 4


Beef Pot Roast 498

Mashed Potatoes 1077

Buttered Broccoli 1007

whole wheat bread and butter (used 100% Whole Wheat Bread 89)

Ambrosia 257

Brownies 194

Coffee for adults (milk for children)

Breakfast featured 267 Baked Apple, Meta’s quick version of a baked apple.  It was a bit sweet for my taste, but it was pretty quick and easy.  Bacon, toast and coffee rounded out the meal nicely.

11.10.13 Breakfast 2

968 Onion Soup for lunch was super easy and delicious.  It called for a tablespoon of cheese per serving, which I couldn’t really taste, but was otherwise a great recipe.  I floated my toast on top.  Yummy.

759 Molded Peach Salad consisted of canned peach halves in lemon gelatine perched on top of lettuce with mayo.  Combing the dessert and salad portions of a menu will never seem quite right to me, but it seems to come up pretty frequently in mid-century cooking.  I’m fairly convinced that mayo should be quarantined away from gelatine, but this was decently edible.  The lemon flavor was almost convincing. Almost.

11.10.13 Lunch

Dinner was a very satisfying home run.  A classic meat and potato meal.  I would eat this any day.

11.10.13 Dinner

Dessert was pretty good, but I’m not sold on 194 Brownies recipe.  The baking time was only 15 minutes but I ended up leaving it in for 25.  Even then, the middle was not quite set.  It was pretty fudge-y though.  I have to admit that I’ve never made a brownie that tops the boxed variety.

11.10.13 dessert

89 100% Whole Wheat Bread

(recipe is halved from original and altered slightly for a bread machine)

1/3 cup lukewarm water

1 cup milk

1 TBSP butter, melted

1/2 TBSP salt

1/4 cup plus 1/2 TBSP brown sugar

2 1/2 cups unsifted whole wheat flour

1 package fast granular yeast (used 2 1/4 tsp bread machine yeast)

So, I didn’t follow Meta’s instructions at all on this.  I just dumped the ingredients in my bread machine in this order and turned it on.  But it turned out so yummy!  Nice and soft with a great texture. I’ll definitely make this often.

968 Onion Soup

2 1/2 cups sliced onions (about 1 large onion)

2 cups vegetable or meat stock


2 cups fresh milk or 1 cup evaporated milk and 1 cup water

salt to suit taste

5 TBSP grated cheese (I would consider cheese optional)

Add sliced onions and stock to a soup pan.  Add additional water if needed to cover onions.  Cover and simmer for approximately 10 minutes until the onions are tender.  Add the milk (or evaporated milk and water) and salt and heat to scalding.  Serve with shredded cheese.  Meta also suggest serving it with hot crisp crackers, Croutons (61) or Melba Toast (58).

498 Beef Pot Roast

4lbs beef chuck, round or rump

3 tsp salt

pepper, if desired

3 TBSP shortening

1/2 cup hot water

Rub the meat with salt and sprinkle with pepper (why would you skip pepper?)  Heat shortening in a heavy skillet or Dutch oven and brown meat on all sides.  Add water, cover and simmer about 1 1/2 to 2 hours (or transfer to the oven at 300 degrees).  Add water along the way if needed.  Serve with the remaining liquid (which can be thickened with a flour/water paste).  I found that a 1 1/2 hour cook time made a really nice medium-rare.

194 Brownies

3/4 c AP flour

1/4 tsp salt

1/4 cup butter or other shortening

1 cup sugar

2 eggs, beaten

1 tsp vanilla

2 squares bitter chocolate, melted and cooled (1124) (according to my package, 2 squares equaled 2 oz)

2 TBSP evaporated milk

2 TBSP water

3/4 cup chopped nuts

Prepare a 8 inch square baking dish with butter and wax paper.  Preheat oven to 325 degrees.  Sift and measure flour and combine with salt in a small bowl.  Cream butter and gradually add in sugar.  Add beaten eggs and beat until smooth and fluffy.  Stir in vanilla and melted chocolate.  Combine water and evaporated milk.  Add flour mixture alternately with milk mixture, stirring well with each addition.  Stir in nuts with last few stirs.  Spread in the baking dish and bake for 15 minutes.  (I found this cooking time to be way too low.  I baked it for 25 minutes and it was still a bit underdone in the middle).  Cut while warm.  Makes 2 1/2 dozen brownies of 1 x 2 inches.

257 Ambrosia

3 large bananas

3 large oranges, chilled

sugar to suit taste

1/2 cup grated moist cocoanut

Peel and slice bananas and oranges.  Combine (adding any sugar if preferred).  Sprinkle with cocoanut and serve.  5 servings.

Friday, December 21st


tomato juice 719a

Hot Wheat Cereal 169 with

top milk

whole wheat toast with butter

Jam 702 (peach butter)

coffee (milk for children)


Puffy Omelet 402 with

Broiled Bacon 544

Molded Cabbage and Pineapple Salad 809

tea (milk for children)


Quick-Baked Whitefish 415

Quick Escalloped Potatoes 1075

Buttered Broccoli 1007

bread and butter

Tapioca Cream 367 with

Strawberry Jam 711

coffee (milk for children)

It’s hard to complain about a Meta breakfast.  Warm and filling as usual.  I’m not use to drinking tomato juice at breakfast; it wasn’t orange juice but fruit serving achieved (with a side o’ salt).  Meta called for 702, Peach Butter as the jam.  I couldn’t find any so I subbed apple butter.


I was gleefully excited to see a molded salad on the menu for lunch!  Evidently I was way too optimistic.  809 Molded Cabbage and Pineapple Salad took forever to set up.  I got so hungry that I gave in and made the other lunch items and ate before it was ready.


Admittedly, I was hungry, but 402 Puffy Omelet and 544 Broiled Bacon were quite tasty.  The omelet had a really interested souffle-like texture with a crispy, buttery top and a very light interior.  (Recipe follows!)  I halved it and cooked it in a smaller skillet with no noticeable harm.  You can tell from the picture that I didn’t quite have the attention span required to perfectly oven-broil the bacon since the edges are a bit burnt, but as Meta promised it was pleasingly free of greasiness and nicely crisp.

A closeup of the inside of the omelet:

402 Puffy Omelet Meta Given The Modern Family Cookbook

The second half of lunch (finally served two hours later) was kind of a flop, literally and figuratively.  Here’s what came itself out of the mold:

809 Moldeed Cabbage and Pineapple Salad Meta Given The Modern Family Cookbook

It looked kinda like a neon yellow brain splatted on the plate.  I pressed on and served as suggested:


The first sensation was a relatively pleasant taste of pineapple and lemon.  Then it hit me.  Cabbage!!  The dissonance between the sweet fruit and the cabbage was alarming.    I then went to try some of the recommended mayo (note the tiny pile at the side) and was hit the realization that mayo shouldn’t be allowed anywhere near this concoction.  I valiantly pushed on for several more bites (including trying the beleaguered lettuce) but to no avail.  This shit sucks.  Nine more molded salads to go.  Oh boy!

Dinner did much to restore my confidence in Meta.  I pulled out all stops and made 66 Ice Box Rolls for the bread and butter in the menu.  (Fantastic by the way!!) I liked everything about dinner.  415 Quick-baked Whitefish was quite good.  (and I even made the breadcrumbs myself).  1075 Quick Escalloped Potatoes was a solid entry in the potato category.  1007 Buttered Broccoli was my second go-around for this recipe so I took the liberty of using romanesco broccoli.  Dinner was, however, really brown.



Dessert, 367 Tapioca Cream, didn’t quite go my way.  It never ended up thickening, but it was at least, very tasty.  Meta has eight more tapioca recipes for me, so I guess I’ll need to do some trouble-shooting.  I’m excited to try 367 again though because it has a lot of promise (once I figure out what I did wrong!)


402 Puffy Omelet

6 eggs, whites and yolks separated

1 tsp salt

2 to 4 TBSP butter

Separate whites and yolks into two separate bowls.  Beat the eggs whites until stiff with an electric egg beater.  Then beat the yolks with the salt until thick and light yellow.  Fold the egg whites into the yolks.  Melt the butter in a large oven-proof skillet over low heat (when I say low, I mean it; use the lowest setting).  Pour in the egg and then do nothing!  Do not touch!  This is not a French omelet.  Set the timer for 20 minutes and walk away.  Meta suggest putting the omelet into an oven set at 350 for 2-5 minutes just to try out the top a bit.  (I don’t think this step is particularity necessary since this omelet is already walking the crisp/dry line).  Loosen with a spatula, cut a line through the center so you can fold it in half.  Serves 5 Americans from the 1940s or 3-4 modern American adults.