Tuesday, November 3rd

Breakfast:

Tomato Juice 719a

Fried Cornmeal Mush 172 with Syrup 924

Broiled Bacon 544

coffee for adults (milk for children)

Luncheon:

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)

Dinner:

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)


Breakfast:

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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.

Luncheon:

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Meal Score: 8/10

Notes:  Mmm…  Simple, but satisfying.

Dinner:

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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

lettuce

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

flour

3 TBSP butter or bacon drippings

water

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.

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Friday, November 21st

Breakfast:

Stewed Prunes 301

Cooked Whole Wheat Cereal 168 or 170 with top milk

toast with butter

Orange Marmalade 712

coffee for adults (milk for children)

Luncheon:

Eggs Benedictine 386

head lettuce, French Dressing 841

bread and butter

Cranberry Sauce 282

tea for adults (milk for children)

Dinner:

Baked Perch 415

Mashed Potatoes 1077

Buttered Cauliflower 1019 (substituted Creamed Spinach de Luxe 1097)

Stewed Tomatoes 1111 (substituted Escalloped Tomatoes 1109)

bread and butter

Whipped Raspberry Gelatine 320 (substituted Apples in Raspberry Gelatine 313)

coffee for adults (milk for children)


Ah Meta!  Your breakfasts never disappoint.  Hearty and satisfying as usual.

11.21.14 breakfast

And lunch!  Today’s lunch totally made up for the disappointing lunch yesterday.  I’ve never attempted a hollandaise sauce so I don’t know if it is as difficult as it is reputed to be, but the cheese sauce on 386 Eggs Benedictine was easy and yummy.  This is technically two servings of the eggs benedictine, but I couldn’t figure out what I would do with the other half of the muffin, so two servings was only logical (of course…)

11.21.14 Lunch

Due to my Midwestern fish sourcing problem (MFS?), the fish in tonight’s dinner was salmon instead of perch.  But then again, I changed pretty much everything about dinner, except for the mashed potatoes.  I left out the bread and butter since the Escalloped Tomatoes and fish were already covered in bread crumbs.  The Escalloped Tomatoes were fantastic for a canned tomato dish; I’d recommend it for a picky veggie eater.  The garlic in the Creamed Spinach de Luxe was just the touch it needed.  Great dinner!

11.21.14 Dinner

Dessert was shredded apples in raspberry jello.  Nothing to write home about, but certainly provided a fruit serving a bit of sweetness to end the meal.

11.21.14 Dessert

386 Eggs Benedictine

6 ham slices, cut thin

pork or bacon drippings

3 large English muffins (82)

6 eggs, poached (391)

2 1/2 c. cheese sauce (920)

Pan-broil ham in drippings until edges are curly.  Split muffins in halves and toast.  Place hot ham slices on toasted muffins, put hot poached eggs on the ham, and pour a cheese sauce over all.  Serve hot.  6 servings.

1097 Creamed Spinach de Luxe

1 1/2 lb. spinach or 1 No. 2 tin

1 tsp. sugar

3 TBSP. butter

1/2 clove garlic, chopped fine or 1 small onion

3 TBSP flour

1 1/2 tsp. salt

1 c. milk

1 c. thin cream

Cook spinach as for Buttered Spinach (1094), adding the sugar to the cooking water; or heat canned spinach in its own liquor with the sugar.  Drain thoroughly.  Meanwhile melt the butter in a saucepan, add the chopped garlic, and cook until soft; blend in the flour and salt, and add milk and cream.  Stir constantly over direct heat until sauce boils and thickens; then add the drained spinach which has been chopped, mix well, and reheat until the sauce bubbles up.  Serve immediately.  5 or 6 servings.

1109 Escalloped Tomatoes

1 No. 2 tin tomatoes or 4 large fresh tomatoes

2 c. fresh bread crumbs

1 medium onion, chopped

3/4 tsp salt

1 TBSP sugar

2 TBSP butter

Combine tomatoes with half the bread crumbs and stir in onion, salt and sugar.  Turn into buttered casserole.  Brown rest of bread crumbs in the butter in a saucepan or skillet, and sprinkle over top of casserole.  Place in a 375 degree oven for about 15 to 20 minutes, or until hot through.  5 servings.

Sunday, April 20th

Breakfast:

grapefruit

wheat biscuits with top milk

toast with butter

Quince Honey 713

coffee for adults (cocoa for children)

Dinner:

Beef and Vegetable Pie 501

Tossed Vegetable Salad 825 and 841

whole wheat bread and butter

Peach Meringue 292

coffee for adults (milk for children)

Supper:

Grilled Denver Sandwiches 886

Fruit Buttermilk 13 

I wasn’t 100% sure what “wheat biscuits” meant but I figured the shredded wheat biscuits from my childhood were close enough.

Quince honey sounds good but, of course, I was unable to find it at the store.  In fact, they didn’t have any quince jams or jellies, which surprised me a bit.  I settled for honey on my toast.  I once bought a fresh quince at the store, never having tried one before, and attempted to eat it like an apple.  Mistake.

I’ve had 501 Beef and Vegetable Pie fairly recently (3/31) since I used it to substitute for a “variety” meat recipe, but it’s good comfort food and worth a revisit.  It may look like there is no crust on the pie this time, but it’s crumbled in pieces in there somewhere. Pastry is my cooking arch-nemesis.

The tossed vegetable salad was really fresh and spring-y.  Meta uses the shopping list section (handily printed right next to the menu) to suggest variations on a recipe.  For the salad, she listed cucumbers, tomatoes, celery and radishes.  Yum!

4.20.14 Dinner

292 Peach Meringue was all kinds of awesome.  I really liked the crunchy texture of the meringue against the soft peaches.  The hint of almond flavoring really added something too.

4.20.14 Dessert

886 Grilled Denver Sandwiches for supper was right up my alley.  So yummy!  Although, I technically had two servings of egg on my sandwich since one didn’t seem like enough.  I’ve tried 13 Fruit Buttermilk previously and my notes say “nasty,” so I went with canned pears and milk to achieve nutritional parity.

4.20.14 Supper

292 Peach Meringue

1/4 tsp cream of tartar

1/8 tsp almond extract

1/8 tsp vanilla

1/8 tsp salt

2 egg whites

1/2 cup granulated sugar

6 peaches or 12 canned peach halves

Add egg whites, cream of tartar, extracts and salt to a large glass or metal bowl.  Beat until very foamy. Continue beating while gradually adding sugar until stiff peaks form.  Draw a 7 inch circle on a piece of parchment paper and pipe or spoon the meringue on the circle, building up sides.  Bake at 250 for 1 1/2 to 2 hours until dry and crisp.  Let cool.  Just before serving, peel and slice peaches and heap onto meringue.  (Sprinkle with a little sugar if using fresh).  Makes 5 servings.

886 Denver Sandwiches

5 eggs

2 TBSP chopped onion

1/3 cup chopped green pepper

salt and pepper to suit taste

10 slices buttered bread or toast

Beat eggs and mix with onion and pepper.  Butter a 9 or 10 inch skillet and cook eggs over low heat until firm.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper and cut into 5 pieces.  Put pieces between bread or toast.  Makes 5 servings.

Saturday, December 14th

Breakfast:

grapefruit halves

Rolled Oats 168 with top milk

Broiled Bacon 544

toast with butter

coffee for adults (cocoa for children)

Luncheon:

Cheese Egg Float 181

head lettuce wedges with French Dressing 841

Stewed Dried Peaches 283

milk for all

Dinner:

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).

Thursday, December 27th

Breakfast:

dates in Cooked Wheat Cereal 169 with top milk

toast with butter, Jelly 709 (grape jelly)

coffee for adults (milk for children)

Luncheon:

Cream of Tomato Soup 960

Melba Toast with butter 58

Sweet Potato Salad 800

peaches (canned)

tea for adults (milk for children)

Dinner:

Creamed Shrimps 462

Boiled Rice 174

Buttered Spinach 1094

whole wheat bread and butter

Prune and Orange Jelly 332

coffee for adults (milk for children)

Breakfast was, as usual, tasty, warm and filling.  The dates were a nice addition to the farina.  I also realized that this is the 5th full menu day that I’ve done so far and all have featured a hot cereal for breakfast.  Not a complaint by any means, but I’m looking forward to a n0n-cereal day so I can try out some more breakfast recipes.

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Lunch was a bit of a mixed bag.  960 Cream of Tomato Soup was a fail.  The recipe involved heating the tomato portion of the soup while making a white sauce separately.  Meta indicates that if both are heated to the same temperature, then there would be no curdling.  I didn’t use a thermometer, but I figured that if both were hot, it wouldn’t be a problem.  That was not the case.

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I put it through a sieve again to remove most of the chunks, but there were still some small floating blobs.  It was still decently edible, but a bit too sweet for my taste.  If this comes up again, I’ll try Meta’s suggested variation of condensed tomato soup mixed with milk (one of the few references to canned soup I’ve found!)

58 Melba Toast was pretty good–a textural change up from standard toast.  I quite enjoyed 800 Sweet Potato Salad.  It was a good, simple variation on potato salad.  Which was good, because I didn’t make it through much of the soup or canned peaches.  I don’t have anything against canned peaches, but I tried the type in heavy syrup and it was way too sweet for my taste (a theme here?)

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Meta doesn’t make any specifications about whether canned fruit is in syrup or juice, but I’m guessing most canned fruit at the time would have had sugar.  Her recipe for 717 Canned Peaches involves 12 cups of sugar (for 16 quarts of peaches).  However, she does mention in the canning intro that “it is possible to water-pack fruits without sugar if desired”, so I’m probably going to go with juice packed in the future to avoid waste even though it might not be the most authentic option.

Speaking of fruit juice, I have a bonus recipe! (Or perhaps a penalty recipe?)  13 Fruit Buttermilk is a combination of buttermilk and fruit juice.  Meta says that its a good way to use up the juice drained from canned fruit, so I dutifully used the juice drained from the peaches and mixed it in a 1:2 ratio with buttermilk.  Sugar can be added to suit taste; my taste buds said no.

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It was awful!  It tasted like liquified cottage cheese gone bad.  The buttermilk overwhelmed any peach flavor.  Ugh. Buttermilk must be an acquired tasted.

Back to the program:  Dinner was pretty tasty.  174 Boiled Rice worked fine, but I’ve have a Japanese rice maker, so it seemed like a lot of work comparatively.  462 Creamed Shrimp was good; it actually struck me as something I would have absolutely loved as a kid.  It was a very simple recipe; just shrimp heated in a white sauce, but I liked the creamy sauce mixed with the rice.  The recipe also called for capers or chopped sweet pickle.  I went for the capers (I believe I’ve already established my preference for savory today), and they were a flavorful garnish.  1094 Buttered Spinach was a solid recipe (5-10 minute boiling time so not really overcooked as I had feared).

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Dessert, 332 Prune and Orange Jelly, was a true warrior’s dessert.   I actually really like prunes, but I still think the texture and flavor combination of the prunes and oranges really worked.  Overall, a good day of meals. Thanks Meta.

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800 Sweet Potato Salad

3 cups (about 2 lbs) diced cooked sweet potatoes

1 1/2 cups diced celery

1 tsp salt

3 TBSP French Dressing (841) or Mayonnaise (843)

Lettuce

Mix all ingredients together and serve on lettuce.  If you use mayonnaise as the dressing, Meta recommends first marinating the potatoes and celery in the French Dressing for a half-hour and then draining the French Dressing before mixing with the mayo.  (This is what I did and the French Dressing imparted a very nice flavor; recipe is below and is very tasty on it’s own). 5 servings.

841 French Dressing

2/3 cup salad oil

1/3 cup cider vinegar

1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp sugar (or to taste)

1/16 tsp dry mustard

1/16 black pepper

1 tsp paprika

1/2 tsp grated onion

Whisk or shake together until thoroughly combined.

332 Prune and Orange Jelly

1/4 lb dried pruces

1 package orange-flavored gelatine

1 cup boiling water

3/4 cup cold water

2 oranges, peeled and sliced or diced

Soak prunes overnight (just enough water to cover).  Drain, reserving water.  Remove stones if any and cut into quarters.  Add gelatine to a mixing bowl; stir in boiling water until dissolved.  Measure out the 3/4 cup cold water, using the prune soaking liquid and adding additional water if necessary.  Stir in the prunes and refrigerate until partially congealed.  Add oranges and refrigerate until firm.  5 servings.

Saturday, December 8th

Breakfast:

freshly sectioned fruit (tangerines)

Cooked Whole Wheat Cereal 170 with top milk

toast with butter, jam 703 (plum butter)

Coffee for adults (cocoa for children)

Luncheon:

Cream of Onion Soup 955

crisp crackers or toast

lettuce wedges with French Dressing 841

Spice Cake 114

sliced bananas with top milk

tea for adults (milk for children)

Dinner:

Pan-Fried Liver 601

Creamed Potatoes 1071

Harvard Beets 1006

bread and butter

Mincemeat Custard 229

coffee for adults (milk for children)

Breakfast:  A pretty standard and satisfying Meta breakfast.  I couldn’t find a plum butter at the store, but I was happily surprised to find plum preserves.

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Lunch(eon):  Lunch was super enjoyable.  The Cream of Onion Soup, 955, was a quick and simple soup made with bacon, onion, flour evaporated milk, salt and pepper.  The recipe suggested serving it over a piece of toast so I chose toast in the crisp cracker or toast election.  Really simple but lovely.  It reminded me of the potato soup my mom use to make with just potatoes, milk and butter with toast floating on top.  I got a little misty thinking about my late mother and how much she would have enjoyed the food from The Modern Family Cook Book.

I went with the classic iceberg for the suggested wedge. I’ve actually made 841, French Dressing, previously and it was still just as good as I remembered.  It’s kind of a weird orange from the full teaspoon of paprika but it’s balanced and tasty.  It’s amazing how much better home-made dressing is than bottled.

The half and half (subbed for the top milk) seemed a bit unusual on top of bananas but it was good.  114, Spice Cake, held up nicely as a recommended leftover from Thursday.  All in all, a really tasty meal.  (And so nice to have a warm meal at lunch!)

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Since 601, Pan-Fried Liver, was clearly out due to my weird meat exclusion, I made from pan-fried bratwurst (a fantastic beer brat from my weekly organic produce delivery).  It wasn’t a Meta recipe, but I couldn’t find any sausage recipes except for frankfurters and bologna.

Too bad the bratwurst was the most enjoyable part of the meal.  1071, Creamed Potatoes were just fine, but not my favorite (evidently, anything can be creamed, and boy does Meta go to town in this book; 919, White Sauce, may be the most used recipe in this book).  1006, Harvard Beets, were okay but called for canned beets.  I love beets, but fresh are so much better.

Dessert, 229, Mincemeat Custard, was not great.  That might, in part, be my fault for going with the cheaper prepared mincemeat.  In my defense, the recipe only called for 5 TBSP of mincemeat and the cheaper, concentrated kind was $4 while the more expensive (and probably taster) option was a whopping $10.

Dinner was perfectly serviceable, but a bit of a let down considering how very tasty I considered lunch.

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(The Mincemeat custard looks rather unfortunate; the rest went in the trash.  Sorry Meta).

Also, a bonus recipe!  I had the ladies from my book club over today for Christmas cookie baking.  I made 223, Poppy Seed Cookies.  They are pretty tasty and surprisingly savory.  I liked them but I don’t think they would be in my regular rotation.

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