Food of the Fifties

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
User avatar
gatorman
Posts: 2493
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:35 am
Location: The Swamp

Food of the Fifties

Post by gatorman » Mon Feb 09, 2015 11:57 pm

I'm dating myself by posting this, but I grew up in the '50s and '60s. My mom made a lot of dishes I remember, but never see anymore and haven't cooked myself. Three I remember eating a lot are Swiss steak, pigs in a blanket (stuffed cabbage rolls) and chicken and dumplings. My grandmother made a great baked ham, studded with cloves, decorated with pineapple rings and glazed with brown sugar. My dad made burgers and always mixed in a package of Lipton's onion soup mix. I haven't made them that way in the last 30 years, although I recall liking them as a kid. So, I'm thinking about putting together a bunch of those old recipes from the '50s and '60s and I'm looking for contributions from anyone who'd like to add a few from their past. Appetizers, soups, salads, vegetables, entrees, desserts, drinks and any other edible you might care to add are all welcome, post them here. I'll post a few myself as soon as I can figure them out. My goal is to cook my way into the summer recreating the food of my youth, and for the recipes you post, the food of your youth as well, wallowing in the nostalgia of it every second along the way.

Thanks in advance,
gatorman

ResearchMed
Posts: 6411
Joined: Fri Dec 26, 2008 11:25 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by ResearchMed » Tue Feb 10, 2015 12:03 am

I think "pigs in a blanket" are the tiny cocktail franks with either ready-to-bake croissant-type triangles (from a can in the fridge section) or some other pastry rolled around them.

Stuffed cabbage is... stuffed cabbage :happy [cabbage stuffed with some ground meats, often in a tomato-y sauce?]

Yes, some of that nice "comfort" (aka "heavy", often) was good.

Casseroles seemed to be a bigger thing back then, too.

RM
This signature is a placebo. You are in the control group.

davebarnes
Posts: 542
Joined: Wed Jan 02, 2008 7:06 pm
Location: Berkeley, Denver, Colorado USA

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by davebarnes » Tue Feb 10, 2015 12:08 am

Jello
Cake made with Betty Crocker mix
Deviled eggs
wheateena
White bread
A nerd living in Denver

Beth*
Posts: 724
Joined: Wed Apr 30, 2014 9:57 am

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by Beth* » Tue Feb 10, 2015 12:11 am

Retro Recipes:

http://allrecipes.com/recipes/everyday- ... eas/retro/

I haven't seen a good jello mold in years, but I'm not feeling inspired to make one. My grandmother served them all the time. I do make deviled eggs now and then and they are always popular. I used to love sweet and sour meatballs. I think one of the ingredients my mother used was grape jelly.

User avatar
gatorman
Posts: 2493
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:35 am
Location: The Swamp

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by gatorman » Tue Feb 10, 2015 12:15 am

ResearchMed wrote:I think "pigs in a blanket" are the tiny cocktail franks with either ready-to-bake croissant-type triangles (from a can in the fridge section) or some other pastry rolled around them.

Stuffed cabbage is... stuffed cabbage :happy [cabbage stuffed with some ground meats, often in a tomato-y sauce?]

Yes, some of that nice "comfort" (aka "heavy", often) was good.

Casseroles seemed to be a bigger thing back then, too.

RM
Pigs in a blanket may have involved cocktail franks and croissant dough in your house, but in ours it involved cabbage leaves, stuffed with a mixture of ground round and rice, cooked in mom's Presto pressure cooker with tomato sauce.

A friend's mom made tuna casserole a lot, doesn't sound very appetizing, but I remember it as being pretty tasty. I also remember eating Chicken Divan, but, other than chicken, I couldn't tell you what was in it.

gatorman

Spirit Rider
Posts: 7980
Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 2:39 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by Spirit Rider » Tue Feb 10, 2015 12:50 am

Oh, man, chicken and dumplings. I have never had anything as good since my mother used to make it. Probably haven't had it in 40 years.

Two meals I could and have lived the rest of my life without; liver and onions and Irish boiled dinner. Who ever thought corned beef, potatoes, onions, carrots, rutabaga, and cabbage all boiled together was a delicacy. Can you even get rutabaga anymore (I see (and never buy) white turnips from time to time). Recently some restaurant actually served me turnip as part of its mixed vegetable. I had a PTSD childhood flashback, I'm still recovering.

You will find many an Irish Pub, but nary an Irish Restaurant. With good reason, the British Isles and good food are an oxymoron. To be fair, there is fish and chips, but then again how can you screw up fried fish and fried sliced potatoes.

User avatar
tludwig23
Posts: 1660
Joined: Thu Dec 30, 2010 3:27 pm
Location: 48deg46"23"N 122deg28'21"W

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by tludwig23 » Tue Feb 10, 2015 12:59 am

Creamed chipped beef on toast, aka sh*t on a shingle. Somehow my father developed a taste for this while in the Air Force. Perhaps exposed to too much radiation.
Waldorf salad. Grapes and mayo in the same dish. Enough said.
Watergate salad. I don't really remember what was in it, other than Cool Whip and pineapple
Tuna-noodle casserole. A fish died for this, sadly.
That's what I do: I drink, and I know things. --Tyrion Lannister

User avatar
Mrs.Feeley
Posts: 823
Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2011 2:52 am

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by Mrs.Feeley » Tue Feb 10, 2015 1:02 am

Looooove Jell-O! Especially when made with canned fruit cocktail. In fact I just polished off a dish. Remember when a dish of Jell-O was one of the main desserts served at drugstore lunch counters? Always in a tall glass with whipped cream on top.

I think one of the things that made it so popular was that it was so cheap and easy to make for a dessert. I read that sales of Jell-O have plummeted in the past few years which is not surprising. I think my mom and grandma always operated under the assumption that Jell-O possessed some magical nutritional ingredient--it made nails stronger, remember that advertising claim?--even though the box clearly stated that it contained zero protein or anything else of value to the human body except sugar.

My family and neighbors used to make something called "hamburger on bread." Spread ground beef on bread as if it were a sandwich spread, salt and pepper, then put it under the broiler for a few minutes.

My mom also used to make something called goldenrod toast. She'd pour over toast a heavy white sauce containing chopped egg whites and sprinkle on top crumpled cooked egg yolks. I loved it as a kid, but something tells me I probably wouldn't these days.

Another favorite was Chocolate Jimmies Cake which was made with a huge amount of those chocolate sprinkles you put on ice-cream and flavored with cold coffee. Here's one recipe:

http://www.jamhands.net/2012/05/great-g ... -cake.html

psteinx
Posts: 2772
Joined: Tue Mar 13, 2007 2:24 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by psteinx » Tue Feb 10, 2015 1:06 am

gatorman -

I, too, know pigs in the blanket as hot dogs (mini or regular, with the latter usually cut in half) baked inside a crescent roll.

That said, your version sounds like an Americanized version of Rouladen. One of the frozen dinner brands (Stouffer's? Lean Cuisine?) makes a version that's pretty good if you want a quick simple throwback memory.

You can get a pretty good Chicken and Dumplings at Cracker Barrel restaurants (I assume it's still on the menu).

Of course, it's easy to play with different ways to spice up hamburgers. This weekend I was using a heavy dose of Worcestshire sauce, plus onion powder, salt, and ground pepper - came out pretty good.

My grandma, and sometimes my mom, made me Swiss Steak. Isn't this just basically ground beef plus some onion and salt, pan-fried? Been a while for me...

Hams are easy to make, and yes, they taste pretty good with the sugar glaze and pineapple. Many packaged hams will come with a little packet of sugar and whatnot and instructions to make a simple glaze.

User avatar
Mrs.Feeley
Posts: 823
Joined: Sat Nov 12, 2011 2:52 am

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by Mrs.Feeley » Tue Feb 10, 2015 1:29 am

psteinx wrote:My grandma, and sometimes my mom, made me Swiss Steak. Isn't this just basically ground beef plus some onion and salt, pan-fried? Been a while for me...
Swiss steak is a tough cut of meat that's been pounded thin to tenderize it. It's cooked by stewing with tomatoes. If you fry it it's usually too tough to eat. I learned to make it in home ec class which I took because a high school guidance counselor insisted college admittance personnel would find it extremely odd if a girl did not have a home ec class on her high school transcript. My parents agreed.

If I remember correctly the Swiss steak found in Swanson TV dinners was ground beef as you describe it cooked in tomato sauce.

obgraham
Posts: 1067
Joined: Mon Jan 28, 2013 7:30 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by obgraham » Tue Feb 10, 2015 1:43 am

I think there are good reasons why this nostalgic style food existed: finances. Certainly in my lower-middle-class circles, nobody ate out in restaurants very often, except when traveling. So Mom June Cleaver stayed in the kitchen cooking up these meals which we now in hindsight think were so great. Now we eat in restaurants a lot, and lots of our meals at home are already semi-prepared.

If you went to a pot luck then, somebody prepared the "pot". Now we stop at Costco or Safeway on the way and grab a tray, at 4 times the price.

But some things are for the best now: I too haven't eaten liver and onions since I left home. Or Lancashire Hot Pot. Or a tongue sandwich. All staples of Limey immigrants fresh off the boat!

Fallible
Posts: 6358
Joined: Fri Nov 27, 2009 4:44 pm
Contact:

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by Fallible » Tue Feb 10, 2015 1:59 am

My grandmother was head cook in the family, but she never wrote down her recipes and so left behind none. The dishes I can still taste just thinking about them are goulash, baked spareribs with sauerkraut topped with dumplings, meatloaf made with pork, ground beef and lamb, a baked ham and tomato casserole, potato pancakes, deviled eggs served only on holidays, coleslaw mixed with bacon bits and vinegar, and many more I can't remember. She was Depression era and wasted nothing, meaning lots of leftovers.

This has been fun to remember.
Bogleheads® wiki | Investing Advice Inspired by Jack Bogle

dolphinsaremammals
Posts: 2094
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 4:18 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by dolphinsaremammals » Tue Feb 10, 2015 2:36 am

I have to do this.

Goulash, deviled eggs, sloppy joes, Jello molds, pork chops/mashed potatoes/sauerkraut, fried bologna cups with ketchup, canned pear halves on iceberg lettuce with cream cheese, Velveeta grilled cheese sandwiches with bread and butter pickles inserted, coca cola and vanilla ice cream floats.

Keep us up to date on what you do.

FedGuy
Posts: 1222
Joined: Sun Jul 25, 2010 3:36 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by FedGuy » Tue Feb 10, 2015 7:08 am

It looks like "pigs in a blanket" can refer to both tiny hot dogs wrapped in a pastry and to cabbage rolls:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pigs_in_blankets

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cabbage_roll

Having said that, the tiny hot dog version seems to be by far the more common (I had actually never heard of the cabbage version until reading this thread). If you go to into a sports bar or similar restaurant and order pigs in a blanket, you'll get tiny hot dogs.

User avatar
gatorman
Posts: 2493
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:35 am
Location: The Swamp

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by gatorman » Tue Feb 10, 2015 7:16 am

psteinx wrote:gatorman -

I, too, know pigs in the blanket as hot dogs (mini or regular, with the latter usually cut in half) baked inside a crescent roll.

That said, your version sounds like an Americanized version of Rouladen. One of the frozen dinner brands (Stouffer's? Lean Cuisine?) makes a version that's pretty good if you want a quick simple throwback memory.

You can get a pretty good Chicken and Dumplings at Cracker Barrel restaurants (I assume it's still on the menu).

Of course, it's easy to play with different ways to spice up hamburgers. This weekend I was using a heavy dose of Worcestshire sauce, plus onion powder, salt, and ground pepper - came out pretty good.

My grandma, and sometimes my mom, made me Swiss Steak. Isn't this just basically ground beef plus some onion and salt, pan-fried? Been a while for me...

Hams are easy to make, and yes, they taste pretty good with the sugar glaze and pineapple. Many packaged hams will come with a little packet of sugar and whatnot and instructions to make a simple glaze.
My mom made Swiss Steak with round steak, which she dredged in flour and fried and then added a tomato sauce to which she'd added sliced celery and, I think, sliced onions. She then cooked it on low on the stovetop until tender, which usually took quite awhile. I distinctly remember the celery taste in the gravy. She usually served it with mashed potatoes and peas. Somewhere along the way, the potatoes started coming out of a box, that wasn't an improvement.

jstrazzere
Posts: 260
Joined: Tue Feb 18, 2014 4:19 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by jstrazzere » Tue Feb 10, 2015 7:41 am

gatorman wrote:Pigs in a blanket may have involved cocktail franks and croissant dough in your house, but in ours it involved cabbage leaves, stuffed with a mixture of ground round and rice, cooked in mom's Presto pressure cooker with tomato sauce.
I suppose folks had different names for different recipes.

What you are describing sounds to me like galumpkis. Yum. I've made them with recipes like this:
http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/tyle ... ecipe.html

Pigs in a blanket were always franks in dough everywhere I've ever been.

User avatar
gatorman
Posts: 2493
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:35 am
Location: The Swamp

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by gatorman » Tue Feb 10, 2015 7:44 am

Mrs.Feeley wrote: My mom also used to make something called goldenrod toast. She'd pour over toast a heavy white sauce containing chopped egg whites and sprinkle on top crumpled cooked egg yolks. I loved it as a kid, but something tells me I probably wouldn't these days.
It was called eggs ala goldenrod in our house. We usually had it about one Saturday per month. One of my parents would fry up some bacon and hard boil the eggs. The gravy was made by browning some flour in the bacon grease and then adding milk, and lots of pepper, and stirring like mad until it thickened. Usually, it was served over toast, but if my dad was feeling ambitious, he'd make biscuits (using Bisquick, of course). The bacon was crumbled over the top. I live in the South, where biscuits and gravy is an institution, so I sometimes recreate it by ordering biscuits and gravy, eggs poached well and a side of bacon. Brings back lots of memories writing about it . . .

User avatar
gatorman
Posts: 2493
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:35 am
Location: The Swamp

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by gatorman » Tue Feb 10, 2015 7:46 am

jstrazzere wrote:
gatorman wrote:Pigs in a blanket may have involved cocktail franks and croissant dough in your house, but in ours it involved cabbage leaves, stuffed with a mixture of ground round and rice, cooked in mom's Presto pressure cooker with tomato sauce.
I suppose folks had different names for different recipes.

What you are describing sounds to me like galumpkis. Yum. I've made them with recipes like this:
http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/tyle ... ecipe.html

Pigs in a blanket were always franks in dough everywhere I've ever been.
Well, you obviously never had dinner at Momma Gatorman's house . . .

HongKonger
Posts: 1025
Joined: Tue Jun 21, 2011 10:35 am
Location: Deep in the Balkans

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by HongKonger » Tue Feb 10, 2015 8:11 am

Spirit Rider wrote:With good reason, the British Isles and good food are an oxymoron. To be fair, there is fish and chips, but then again how can you screw up fried fish and fried sliced potatoes.
Really?

Beef Wellington
Steak and Kidney pie
Roast beef and Yorkshire pudding or indeed the whole 'Sunday Roast''
Shepherds Pie
Scones with jam and clotted cream
Rhubarb or Apple crumble

Not to mention fantastic cheeses (Red Leicester, Cheshire, Cheddar, Stilton, Wensleydale etc etc), Fish (Smoked Haddock, Manx Kippers, Dover Sole etc) pork pies, scotch eggs, Chelsea Buns, Cornish Pasties, Bakewell Tart ...sandwiches of course are a British invention, as was Porterhouse steak, the traditional full English breakfast, and most recently the Indian Balti. This of course does not even touch on the many regional specialities.

And if you think its not hard to mess up fish and chips then I am inclined to think you haven't tasted the real deal.

So for this "Limey", remind me again what the Yanks invented in the way of food.. and I don't mean the "food like products" the rest of the world shakes it heads at.

dependapotamus
Posts: 93
Joined: Mon Nov 26, 2012 12:51 am

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by dependapotamus » Tue Feb 10, 2015 8:30 am

Welsh Rarebit. Toast served with a sauce on top made primarily from a nice amber or porter beer and cheddar cheese.

User avatar
nisiprius
Advisory Board
Posts: 35878
Joined: Thu Jul 26, 2007 9:33 am
Location: The terrestrial, globular, planetary hunk of matter, flattened at the poles, is my abode.--O. Henry

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by nisiprius » Tue Feb 10, 2015 8:33 am

obgraham wrote:...Or a tongue sandwich...
That's an interesting one. It's quite interesting how food choices drift over time probably as a result of price changes. In 1950s, tongue sandwiches were a perfectly common choice--or, at least, they were a common choice within a fifty-mile radius of New York City. Somewhere along the line tongue all but vanished. I imagine it has something to do with industrial processing practices but I don't know. Tongue is very expensive when you can find it.

It stands out in my mind because thirty or forty years ago my daughter read a book by, I'm drawing a blank, it wasn't Judy Blume but someone like that, that mentioned tongue, and she wanted to try it. We actually couldn't find it anywhere locally, despite there being plenty of "delis." Eventually we visited New York City and found a delicatessen that had it.

Perhaps it was killed off by the joke: "Ick. I don't really want to eat something that's been in a cow's mouth. Could you just bring me some eggs?"
Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen and six, result happiness; Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.

dolphinsaremammals
Posts: 2094
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 4:18 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by dolphinsaremammals » Tue Feb 10, 2015 8:35 am

HongKonger wrote:
Spirit Rider wrote:With good reason, the British Isles and good food are an oxymoron. To be fair, there is fish and chips, but then again how can you screw up fried fish and fried sliced potatoes.
Really?

Beef Wellington
Steak and Kidney pie
Roast beef and Yorkshire pudding or indeed the whole 'Sunday Roast''
Shepherds Pie
Scones with jam and clotted cream
Rhubarb or Apple crumble

Not to mention fantastic cheeses (Red Leicester, Cheshire, Cheddar, Stilton, Wensleydale etc etc), Fish (Smoked Haddock, Manx Kippers, Dover Sole etc) pork pies, scotch eggs, Chelsea Buns, Cornish Pasties, Bakewell Tart ...sandwiches of course are a British invention, as was Porterhouse steak, the traditional full English breakfast, and most recently the Indian Balti. This of course does not even touch on the many regional specialities.

And if you think its not hard to mess up fish and chips then I am inclined to think you haven't tasted the real deal.

So for this "Limey", remind me again what the Yanks invented in the way of food.. and I don't mean the "food like products" the rest of the world shakes it heads at.
I've eaten in Britain. Next trip I think I'll pack jars of peanut butter in my luggage, at least I won't starve.

Remind me what Thanksgiving dinner is like in Britain? Oh, right.

User avatar
gatorman
Posts: 2493
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:35 am
Location: The Swamp

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by gatorman » Tue Feb 10, 2015 8:40 am

Here's a recipe for Chicken Divan,

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/paul ... ecipe.html

I might substitute some nonfat yogurt for the cup of mayo to cut the calories down a bit.

The photo looks really good, which, knowing how I react to food photos, must mean the calorie count is through the roof.

gatorman

HongKonger
Posts: 1025
Joined: Tue Jun 21, 2011 10:35 am
Location: Deep in the Balkans

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by HongKonger » Tue Feb 10, 2015 8:59 am

dolphinsaremammals wrote:
Remind me what Thanksgiving dinner is like in Britain? Oh, right.
Quite like an average Sunday roast actually..

Sidney
Posts: 6678
Joined: Thu Mar 08, 2007 6:06 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by Sidney » Tue Feb 10, 2015 9:01 am

HongKonger wrote:
Spirit Rider wrote:With good reason, the British Isles and good food are an oxymoron. To be fair, there is fish and chips, but then again how can you screw up fried fish and fried sliced potatoes.
Really?

Beef Wellington
Steak and Kidney pie
Roast beef and Yorkshire pudding or indeed the whole 'Sunday Roast''
Shepherds Pie
Scones with jam and clotted cream
Rhubarb or Apple crumble

Not to mention fantastic cheeses (Red Leicester, Cheshire, Cheddar, Stilton, Wensleydale etc etc), Fish (Smoked Haddock, Manx Kippers, Dover Sole etc) pork pies, scotch eggs, Chelsea Buns, Cornish Pasties, Bakewell Tart ...sandwiches of course are a British invention, as was Porterhouse steak, the traditional full English breakfast, and most recently the Indian Balti. This of course does not even touch on the many regional specialities.

And if you think its not hard to mess up fish and chips then I am inclined to think you haven't tasted the real deal.

So for this "Limey", remind me again what the Yanks invented in the way of food.. and I don't mean the "food like products" the rest of the world shakes it heads at.
My cholesterol went up 50 points just reading this post.
I always wanted to be a procrastinator.

User avatar
4nursebee
Posts: 976
Joined: Sun Apr 01, 2012 7:56 am
Location: US

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by 4nursebee » Tue Feb 10, 2015 9:18 am

Not sure of when they came into style but we ate "Crabbies" for dinner last night
4nursebee

User avatar
gatorman
Posts: 2493
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:35 am
Location: The Swamp

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by gatorman » Tue Feb 10, 2015 9:19 am

HongKonger wrote:
Spirit Rider wrote:With good reason, the British Isles and good food are an oxymoron. To be fair, there is fish and chips, but then again how can you screw up fried fish and fried sliced potatoes.
Really?

Beef Wellington
Steak and Kidney pie
Roast beef and Yorkshire pudding or indeed the whole 'Sunday Roast''
Shepherds Pie
Scones with jam and clotted cream
Rhubarb or Apple crumble

Not to mention fantastic cheeses (Red Leicester, Cheshire, Cheddar, Stilton, Wensleydale etc etc), Fish (Smoked Haddock, Manx Kippers, Dover Sole etc) pork pies, scotch eggs, Chelsea Buns, Cornish Pasties, Bakewell Tart ...sandwiches of course are a British invention, as was Porterhouse steak, the traditional full English breakfast, and most recently the Indian Balti. This of course does not even touch on the many regional specialities.

And if you think its not hard to mess up fish and chips then I am inclined to think you haven't tasted the real deal.

So for this "Limey", remind me again what the Yanks invented in the way of food.. and I don't mean the "food like products" the rest of the world shakes it heads at.
Rhubarb crumble, sounds interesting. Please post a recipe.
gatorman

User avatar
gatorman
Posts: 2493
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:35 am
Location: The Swamp

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by gatorman » Tue Feb 10, 2015 9:33 am

4nursebee wrote:Not sure of when they came into style but we ate "Crabbies" for dinner last night
What are crabbies?

User avatar
Steelersfan
Posts: 3434
Joined: Thu Jun 19, 2008 8:47 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by Steelersfan » Tue Feb 10, 2015 9:39 am

I remember creamed chipped beef on toast.

One step further in the wrong direction was creamed tuna on toast.

Mom never was much of a cook.

GoldenFinch
Posts: 1536
Joined: Mon Nov 10, 2014 11:34 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by GoldenFinch » Tue Feb 10, 2015 9:48 am

dolphinsaremammals wrote:I have to do this.

Goulash, deviled eggs, sloppy joes, Jello molds, pork chops/mashed potatoes/sauerkraut, fried bologna cups with ketchup, canned pear halves on iceberg lettuce with cream cheese, Velveeta grilled cheese sandwiches with bread and butter pickles inserted, coca cola and vanilla ice cream floats.

Keep us up to date on what you do.
Yikes! We ate all this stuff! I haven't had the fried bologna in more than 20 years, but it was really good. I always get a horrified look when I tell people about it. I thought I was the only one. I remembered about the ice cream floats recently and was thinking that nobody makes those anymore.

Spirit Rider
Posts: 7980
Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 2:39 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by Spirit Rider » Tue Feb 10, 2015 10:10 am

HongKonger wrote:
Spirit Rider wrote:With good reason, the British Isles and good food are an oxymoron. To be fair, there is fish and chips, but then again how can you screw up fried fish and fried sliced potatoes.
Really?

Beef Wellington
Steak and Kidney pie
Roast beef and Yorkshire pudding or indeed the whole 'Sunday Roast''
Shepherds Pie
Scones with jam and clotted cream
Rhubarb or Apple crumble

Not to mention fantastic cheeses (Red Leicester, Cheshire, Cheddar, Stilton, Wensleydale etc etc), Fish (Smoked Haddock, Manx Kippers, Dover Sole etc) pork pies, scotch eggs, Chelsea Buns, Cornish Pasties, Bakewell Tart ...sandwiches of course are a British invention, as was Porterhouse steak, the traditional full English breakfast, and most recently the Indian Balti. This of course does not even touch on the many regional specialities.

And if you think its not hard to mess up fish and chips then I am inclined to think you haven't tasted the real deal.

So for this "Limey", remind me again what the Yanks invented in the way of food.. and I don't mean the "food like products" the rest of the world shakes it heads at.
So tell me all those "English" restaurants serving these delicacies. After all, if this food was so good, people would be beating down the doors of such restaurants.

Full disclosure, 3/4 of my bloodline is of Irish, Scottish, and English descent. I spent time in Holy Loch, Scotland during my time in the U.S. Navy. I have also, been to Ireland, and England as well as many "fine" meals with the relatives. I say with full genetic license and personal experience, no thanks.

User avatar
JupiterJones
Posts: 2651
Joined: Tue Aug 24, 2010 3:25 pm
Location: Nashville, TN

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by JupiterJones » Tue Feb 10, 2015 10:21 am

Oh yeah... Waldorf salad! My grandmother always made that. :D

For some reason, dishes where the adjective follows the name of the food always strike me as retro. Not sure if these count as "fifites" per se, but how about:
  • Beef Wellington
  • Chicken Kiev
  • Oysters Rockefeller
  • Steak Tartare
And nothing screams mid-century dinner party like rumaki...
Stay on target...

HarrietSpy
Posts: 26
Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2014 9:59 am

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by HarrietSpy » Tue Feb 10, 2015 11:06 am

I don't have the recipes (I just googled and you can easily find what suits you if you are interested) and these might not make your list as they are a bit "depression era" but...

Mock Chicken legs - ground pork in shape of rectangular cubes with skewers in them baked with a brown gravy.

Chicken a la King - my mom served this to me when I was sick - out of the can and on toast - but there are actual recipes if you are interested. Oh, it hit the spot!

Yes, jello in glass cups - how fancy!

PS - who does not like Shepard's pie or Cornish Pasties or a good fish in chips??? I love all of that. And Haggis with whiskey sauce yum

PS part 2 - there is a cookbook titled "endangered Recipes" you might enjoy.

Have fun!

User avatar
gatorman
Posts: 2493
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:35 am
Location: The Swamp

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by gatorman » Tue Feb 10, 2015 11:12 am

Here is a link to a recipe for Beef Wellington from the Food Channel.

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/tyle ... cipe2.html

It looks good, but I don't think it is the same as the original. I don't recall prosciutto being used and I seem to recall that anchovy paste was used on the meat. I could be wrong, it has been at least fifteen years since I last made it. I remember it was very tasty, but quite a lot of work to prepare.
gatorman

User avatar
gatorman
Posts: 2493
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:35 am
Location: The Swamp

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by gatorman » Tue Feb 10, 2015 11:23 am

Somebody mentioned liver and onions. I ate a lot of it as a kid, and I thought it was pretty good. It was improved a lot if the liver was allowed to soak in milk for an hour or so before it was cooked, took away a lot of the bitterness. I doubt if I'd eat it today, the liver is where many toxins are removed from the body, not sure Its a good idea to eat it. Though to each their own.
gatorman

dolphinsaremammals
Posts: 2094
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 4:18 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by dolphinsaremammals » Tue Feb 10, 2015 11:24 am

GoldenFinch wrote: I remembered about the ice cream floats recently and was thinking that nobody makes those anymore.
Root beer or Coke floats were a staple at the local Woolworth's late lamented lunch counter, along with BLTs using toasted bread and those little decorated toothpick things keeping them together. Sigh.

oxothuk
Posts: 328
Joined: Thu Nov 10, 2011 8:35 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by oxothuk » Tue Feb 10, 2015 11:26 am

Mrs.Feeley wrote:Looooove Jell-O!
I think one of the things that made it so popular was that it was so cheap and easy to make for a dessert. I read that sales of Jell-O have plummeted in the past few years which is not surprising.
I read somewhere that Jell-O became popular initially because it was a way to "show off" that you were affluent enough to own a refrigerator.

Casper
Posts: 171
Joined: Tue Oct 15, 2013 8:32 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by Casper » Tue Feb 10, 2015 12:32 pm

For those of you ragging on tuna casserole, your mother must not have applied the coup de grace --- crushed potato chips on top.

User avatar
FrogPrince
Posts: 228
Joined: Thu Sep 27, 2007 6:06 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by FrogPrince » Tue Feb 10, 2015 12:49 pm

Spirit Rider wrote:
HongKonger wrote:
Spirit Rider wrote:With good reason, the British Isles and good food are an oxymoron. To be fair, there is fish and chips, but then again how can you screw up fried fish and fried sliced potatoes.
Really?

Beef Wellington
Steak and Kidney pie
Roast beef and Yorkshire pudding or indeed the whole 'Sunday Roast''
Shepherds Pie
Scones with jam and clotted cream
Rhubarb or Apple crumble

Not to mention fantastic cheeses (Red Leicester, Cheshire, Cheddar, Stilton, Wensleydale etc etc), Fish (Smoked Haddock, Manx Kippers, Dover Sole etc) pork pies, scotch eggs, Chelsea Buns, Cornish Pasties, Bakewell Tart ...sandwiches of course are a British invention, as was Porterhouse steak, the traditional full English breakfast, and most recently the Indian Balti. This of course does not even touch on the many regional specialities.

And if you think its not hard to mess up fish and chips then I am inclined to think you haven't tasted the real deal.

So for this "Limey", remind me again what the Yanks invented in the way of food.. and I don't mean the "food like products" the rest of the world shakes it heads at.
So tell me all those "English" restaurants serving these delicacies. After all, if this food was so good, people would be beating down the doors of such restaurants.

Full disclosure, 3/4 of my bloodline is of Irish, Scottish, and English descent. I spent time in Holy Loch, Scotland during my time in the U.S. Navy. I have also, been to Ireland, and England as well as many "fine" meals with the relatives. I say with full genetic license and personal experience, no thanks.
There is a reason why Britain's favorite food is now curry. :)

To be fair though, the country that gave us Shakespeare, Wallace & Gromit, Darjeeling tea and Wensleydale can't be all that bad.

User avatar
gatorman
Posts: 2493
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:35 am
Location: The Swamp

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by gatorman » Tue Feb 10, 2015 1:04 pm

nisiprius wrote:
obgraham wrote:...Or a tongue sandwich...
That's an interesting one. It's quite interesting how food choices drift over time probably as a result of price changes. In 1950s, tongue sandwiches were a perfectly common choice--or, at least, they were a common choice within a fifty-mile radius of New York City. Somewhere along the line tongue all but vanished. I imagine it has something to do with industrial processing practices but I don't know. Tongue is very expensive when you can find it.

It stands out in my mind because thirty or forty years ago my daughter read a book by, I'm drawing a blank, it wasn't Judy Blume but someone like that, that mentioned tongue, and she wanted to try it. We actually couldn't find it anywhere locally, despite there being plenty of "delis." Eventually we visited New York City and found a delicatessen that had it.

Perhaps it was killed off by the joke: "Ick. I don't really want to eat something that's been in a cow's mouth. Could you just bring me some eggs?"
Well you inspired me to try it. There's a deli down the street from my office that carries it and I went there today specifically for a tongue sandwich. Tongue must be a delicacy these days because it is priced $3 higher than pastrami. $8.99 for a pastrami sandwich and $11.99 for tongue. I had it on seeded rye, with Swiss cheese and a pickle, mustard and mayo. It was good, like a very mild pastrami. But I doubt that I'll ever eat it again, the portion size was much smaller than the pastrami sandwich (maybe that's a good thing) and the taste was so similar if you closed your eyes, you probably couldn't tell the difference between a lean slice of pastrami and a slice of tongue. But thanks for posting, I'd always wondered what it was like, but never pulled the trigger. Now I know.
gatorman

GoldenFinch
Posts: 1536
Joined: Mon Nov 10, 2014 11:34 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by GoldenFinch » Tue Feb 10, 2015 1:36 pm

gatorman wrote:
nisiprius wrote:
obgraham wrote:...Or a tongue sandwich...
That's an interesting one. It's quite interesting how food choices drift over time probably as a result of price changes. In 1950s, tongue sandwiches were a perfectly common choice--or, at least, they were a common choice within a fifty-mile radius of New York City. Somewhere along the line tongue all but vanished. I imagine it has something to do with industrial processing practices but I don't know. Tongue is very expensive when you can find it.

It stands out in my mind because thirty or forty years ago my daughter read a book by, I'm drawing a blank, it wasn't Judy Blume but someone like that, that mentioned tongue, and she wanted to try it. We actually couldn't find it anywhere locally, despite there being plenty of "delis." Eventually we visited New York City and found a delicatessen that had it.

Perhaps it was killed off by the joke: "Ick. I don't really want to eat something that's been in a cow's mouth. Could you just bring me some eggs?"
Well you inspired me to try it. There's a deli down the street from my office that carries it and I went there today specifically for a tongue sandwich. Tongue must be a delicacy these days because it is priced $3 higher than pastrami. $8.99 for a pastrami sandwich and $11.99 for tongue. I had it on seeded rye, with Swiss cheese and a pickle, mustard and mayo. It was good, like a very mild pastrami. But I doubt that I'll ever eat it again, the portion size was much smaller than the pastrami sandwich (maybe that's a good thing) and the taste was so similar if you closed your eyes, you probably couldn't tell the difference between a lean slice of pastrami and a slice of tongue. But thanks for posting, I'd always wondered what it was like, but never pulled the trigger. Now I know.
gatorman
Not trying to speak tongue in cheek, but you are a very adventurous eater Gatorman.

After reading through the various menu items on this thread and recognizing that I ate many of them growing up, I now fully understand why my kids are all four or five inches taller than me.

dolphinsaremammals
Posts: 2094
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 4:18 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by dolphinsaremammals » Tue Feb 10, 2015 1:50 pm

Casper wrote:For those of you ragging on tuna casserole, your mother must not have applied the coup de grace --- crushed potato chips on top.
I thought fried onions were required, but I see from the web that potato chips, fried onions, or (gah) corn flakes were used.

Speaking of fried onions reminds me of green been casserole. The fried onions people must have had a slew of recipes for things topped with fried onions:

http://www.frenchs.com/recipes/search/? ... =Relevance

User avatar
CABob
Posts: 4531
Joined: Sun Feb 25, 2007 8:55 pm
Location: Southern California

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by CABob » Tue Feb 10, 2015 2:00 pm

Interesting conversation bringing back a few memories. Of special interest to me is the subject of pigs in a blanket. In my neighborhood they were ground sausage wrapped in a pastry. I checked with a book of recipes published by the local community for a number of years. There were a couple of recipes for them and both used ground sausage. To use a hot dog would not have been considered. In doing some searching it appears that what I called pigs in a blanket were known as sausage rolls elsewhere. Something similar to this.
Bob

User avatar
Doom&Gloom
Posts: 1944
Joined: Thu May 08, 2014 3:36 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by Doom&Gloom » Tue Feb 10, 2015 2:06 pm

tludwig23 wrote:Creamed chipped beef on toast, aka sh*t on a shingle. Somehow my father developed a taste for this while in the Air Force. Perhaps exposed to too much radiation.
Waldorf salad. Grapes and mayo in the same dish. Enough said.
Watergate salad. I don't really remember what was in it, other than Cool Whip and pineapple
Tuna-noodle casserole. A fish died for this, sadly.
My mom used to make creamed chipped beef on toast for my dad--maybe he developed a taste in the Navy. Fortunately, it was seldom enough that I didn't mind it too much. Whenever it is mentioned, I always think of my dad. The other dish she would fix him that I blamed on his service-days was "milk toast" which I remember as being pieces of toast served in a bowl of warm milk.

I hate tuna and casseroles, so I never had tuna-noodle casserole, but it always makes me think of the Wizard of Id. One of the most memorable cartoons I ever saw was the "Spook" looking out through his cell door at the guard who was eating something. He asked the guard what he was eating, and he said, "Tuna-noodle casserole." The "Spook" replied, "Don't get any in my swill!"

User avatar
Christine_NM
Posts: 2627
Joined: Tue Feb 20, 2007 1:13 am
Location: New Mexico

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by Christine_NM » Tue Feb 10, 2015 2:20 pm

Calf liver sauteed very rare with onion rings. Mashed potatoes. Iceberg lettuce and tomato dinner salad.

Jello chocolate pudding mix (not instant) cooked on stove top with whole milk.

Grilled cheese sandwiches (bread buttered on the outside) and tomato soup (still in style as comfort food, maybe?)

This one is a little gross: hot dog sandwich spread (ground boiled hot dog, relish and mustard spread on bread). I loved this as a small kid. Tried to make it in my 20's and it was really awful.
17% cash 47% stock 36% bond. Retired, w/d rate 2.85%

hicabob
Posts: 2656
Joined: Fri May 27, 2011 5:35 pm
Location: cruz

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by hicabob » Tue Feb 10, 2015 2:20 pm

gatorman wrote:
nisiprius wrote:
obgraham wrote:...Or a tongue sandwich...
That's an interesting one. It's quite interesting how food choices drift over time probably as a result of price changes. In 1950s, tongue sandwiches were a perfectly common choice--or, at least, they were a common choice within a fifty-mile radius of New York City. Somewhere along the line tongue all but vanished. I imagine it has something to do with industrial processing practices but I don't know. Tongue is very expensive when you can find it.

It stands out in my mind because thirty or forty years ago my daughter read a book by, I'm drawing a blank, it wasn't Judy Blume but someone like that, that mentioned tongue, and she wanted to try it. We actually couldn't find it anywhere locally, despite there being plenty of "delis." Eventually we visited New York City and found a delicatessen that had it.

Perhaps it was killed off by the joke: "Ick. I don't really want to eat something that's been in a cow's mouth. Could you just bring me some eggs?"
Well you inspired me to try it. There's a deli down the street from my office that carries it and I went there today specifically for a tongue sandwich. Tongue must be a delicacy these days because it is priced $3 higher than pastrami. $8.99 for a pastrami sandwich and $11.99 for tongue. I had it on seeded rye, with Swiss cheese and a pickle, mustard and mayo. It was good, like a very mild pastrami. But I doubt that I'll ever eat it again, the portion size was much smaller than the pastrami sandwich (maybe that's a good thing) and the taste was so similar if you closed your eyes, you probably couldn't tell the difference between a lean slice of pastrami and a slice of tongue. But thanks for posting, I'd always wondered what it was like, but never pulled the trigger. Now I know.
gatorman
Tongue is excellent. Try a Torta de Lingua at a decent Mexican torta place and you will be a convert.

ResearchMed
Posts: 6411
Joined: Fri Dec 26, 2008 11:25 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by ResearchMed » Tue Feb 10, 2015 2:22 pm

dolphinsaremammals wrote:
Casper wrote:For those of you ragging on tuna casserole, your mother must not have applied the coup de grace --- crushed potato chips on top.
I thought fried onions were required, but I see from the web that potato chips, fried onions, or (gah) corn flakes were used.

Speaking of fried onions reminds me of green been casserole. The fried onions people must have had a slew of recipes for things topped with fried onions:

http://www.frenchs.com/recipes/search/? ... =Relevance
Ohhh.... you beat me to it.

But one HAD to top that green bean casserole with something like those *canned* fried onion circle things.
And then, along with that and the tuna casserole, one would also have the *canned* fried little shoestring potatoes.

Campbell's condensed cream of mushroom and cream of celery soups were all the thing.

My first MIL was a true gourmet cooked, trained in part in Paris.
I truly had not even known food like that existed.
Thanks to Julia Child, I got a good start cooking some other tasty foods.

I also had an immigrant grandmother who couldn't read or write English, and had no written recipes.
One of my fondest memories is getting her to "slow down" with the "just a pinch of this" and "just enough of that to make it light", etc., and one special visit, she would toss everything into a empty bowl first, rather than adding directly into the other ingredients.
And I'd quickly measure it (from a "tiny pinch" to "about 2.5 cups" or whatever), write it down, and then she'd toss it into the mix.
And so... I have a few totally treasured family/ethnic recipes that taste *almost* as good as when she made them.
Or maybe it just tasted better because Grandma was there........

I can taste all of this, perfectly, right now.

RM
This signature is a placebo. You are in the control group.

User avatar
cowboyinasia
Posts: 162
Joined: Sun Sep 07, 2008 7:55 am
Location: Seattle metro

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by cowboyinasia » Tue Feb 10, 2015 2:49 pm

While I missed the 50s and most of the 60s, this does generate some fond nostalgia. :happy For me I'm reminded of canned goods.

Canned corn and canned peas, heated on the stove top without any seasoning. Pretty bland. Creamed corn was the fancy variety.

For dessert, canned peaches. Occasionally canned pears. I remember those as less common for some reason, although I thought they were tastier.

Canned grapefruit juice and canned orange juice. Citrus fruits do NOT make good canned juices! And then orange juice from frozen concentrate, add three cans of water.

You can still buy all these.

I remember seeing some photos of 'Frood', which was some kind of FRozen fOOD. Did anyone ever try that?
Last edited by cowboyinasia on Tue Feb 10, 2015 2:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
cheese_breath
Posts: 7512
Joined: Wed Sep 14, 2011 7:08 pm

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by cheese_breath » Tue Feb 10, 2015 2:49 pm

My parents both worked and didn't have time to prepare any gourmet meals. We never had salads, and all the vegetables other than potatoes came from cans. Other than goulash and fried sirloin steak I really don't remember much I liked about their cooking. But my grandmother made a fantastic banana cream pie, much better Marie Callender, Sara Lee, or any of the rest. And also French fries bubbling in real Spry or Crisco hydrogenated fat, much better than McDonalds.

Maybe it's today's ingredients or my fading taste buds, but even the common foods of yesteryear tasted a lot better than today.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

User avatar
gatorman
Posts: 2493
Joined: Wed Oct 31, 2007 9:35 am
Location: The Swamp

Re: Food of the Fifties

Post by gatorman » Tue Feb 10, 2015 3:04 pm

I think the reason we ate a lot of the things we ate in the '50s was because there simply was not the variety available we have today. The "international" section of the Thriftimart grocery store my mom shopped at occupied about 6' of shelf space and consisted of some kosher items, taco sauce, canned refried beans, soy sauce, canned bamboo shoots, canned water chestnuts, and little else. The vegetable selection was long on potatoes and root vegetables year round, but the fresh vegetables and fruits were highly seasonal. In season you could get them, or at least some of them, out of season, forget about it There may have been a couple of varieties of pasta sauce, but nothing like today. Fresh pasta was simply not available. I could go on and on, but I think you get the idea, people simply had to use what was available, and so they improvised and made do. It takes a lot longer to walk the aisles at my local grocery store than it did when I was a kid, but I'm thankful for the variety from which we can select today.
gatorman
Last edited by gatorman on Tue Feb 10, 2015 8:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Post Reply