October 26, 2015
This recipe for a beet mousse seems very modern. I can imagine finding it on the menu of one of the new vegetable-centric restaurants that are popping up all over. But it’s from the February, 1979 issue of Gourmet. I, for one, can hardly wait to try it. (Other recipes were for beets stuffed with onion, ham, sour cream and horseradish mixture, and a very lively beet green souffle.)
September 11, 2015
I’m not sure I even need to editorialize about this recipe, which says a great deal about what the notion of “gourmet cooking” was when it was printed, in January 1975. I imagine Gourmet readers, with a great deal of time on their hands, spending hours making these fussy little hors d’oeuvres. Every single step is time-consuming.
It gives me great pleasure to see these old recipes. And even more to know that this is one I won’t be trying any time soon. Or ever.
Tomorrow, another recipe from the same issue. It may be even more absurd.
September 8, 2015
A couple of fascinating recipes from the February, 1984 issue of Gourmet. Although they’re from a winter issue, they could not be more timely. If you’re going to make these stir-fried potatoes from the much-lamented Auntie Yuan restaurant, what better time to try them than right now, when new potatoes fill the markets?
As for zucchini – well, if you have a garden, you’ll be grateful for this simple recipe. I made it last night – using red peppers in place of green and upping the amount of basil, and it vanished so quickly I never even got to take a picture!
And I could not resist this ad: farm to table, circa 1984:
August 30, 2015
Sitting here staring at a huge pile of vegetables from the farmers market, trying to figure out what to cook. Trolling through a pile of old Gourmet Magazines, I came upon a couple of interesting old recipes. These are retro classics,far richer than anything a modern cook is likely to come up with. Both intrigue me: the braised cucumbers, because I think we too rarely consider cooking this versatile vegetable, and the stuffed eggplant because, well, it's from Galatoire's and it's really extreme.
And then, just because it's the salad season and you might be interested in exotic dressings, here are a few suggestions from May 1973 including a few I've never heard of. Lorenzo Dressing, anyone?
This issue, incidentally, just might have one of the strangest covers ever printed.
It is, should you be curious, "a covey of doves, symbolizing the peacefulness of the Burgundian countryside." The photograph is by the great Ronny Jaques.
Tomorrow, an odd ad from Julian P. Van Winkle, circa 1960. If I'm not mistaken, that's old Pappy himself.
August 12, 2015
De Pomiane's Cooking in Ten Minutes may be my favorite cookbook. If you don't know it, you're in for a treat.
I wait all year to cook his extremely simple tomatoes in cream, which may be the first three-ingredient dish I ever attempted. All it takes is butter, tomatoes and cream. (Although I admit that I occasionally break down and sprinkle on a little salt as well.) And of course, you do need a bit of bread to mop up the spectacular sauce.
Here's the recipe, via Elizabeth David, from the 60th anniversary issue of Gourmet (September 2001).
I'd print the photograph – the tomatoes are right here, sitting in front of me – but this dish is the best argument I know against taking pictures of your food. And I wouldn't want to do a single thing that might deter you from cooking this most delicious summer dish.
(Although the version printed above is the one I've always used, I've just discovered that the version in the first English translation, pictured above, from 1948 is slightly different. It includes not only salt and pepper, but also onions. Do what you will with this information.)
And since I'm looking through this book, I thought I'd toss in the preface so you get some sense of the delightful Dr. de Pomiane. (He was a serious scientist who also had a long-time cooking show on French radio.)