With cooler weather arriving, the time is right for some retro casseroles.
A reader says the recipe pages included an egg and lemon soup and baklava.
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 medium onions chopped
2 cloves garlic minced
1 lb ground beef or lamb
1 can (8 oz) tomato sauce
2 tbsp tomato paste
½ tsp cinnamon
1 tsp Salt
1 lb ziti or elbow macaroni
2 tbsp butter
1 cup Parmesan or Romano cheese
4 egg whites slightly beaten
6 tbsp butter
¾ cup flour
3 cups milk
1 can (10 ¾ oz) chicken broth
¾ tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
4 egg yolks slightly beaten
A week in western Canadian wine country packed with vineyard touring, tastings and fabulous charcuterie offerings. Trust us to stumble upon a beach shack cantina and return to it within a day or two.
These al pastor tacos were perfect both times. Pork coated by a combination of dried chilies, spices and pineapple, then crisped almost like bacon with just-grilled white onion (maybe the effects from a quick trip under the broiler – look how crunchy!). Supple yet crunchy corn tortillas delivered the goods topped with lashings of thin sour cream and avocado sauce.
We’ve often pined to try making al pastor at home, but balked at the difficulty: we are not rotisserie-type people.
But huzzzah: here’s a cheat that looks uncompromising. A thick chili coating on sliced pork threaded onto skewers, resting on a bed of pineapple to slow cook for two to three hours in the oven. We are that kind of people!
The trick is slicing the meat as thinly into pieces about 3 inches by 3-inches, and ¼-inch thick. Thread onto two parallel skewers to hold in place, packing tightly so there are no gaps. (you’ll have enough to make three rows using six skewers.) Then it goes into a 250 degree oven for two to three hours.
Sounds as uncomplicated and delicious as our favourite carnitas recipe.
3 pounds boneless pork shoulder
2 dried guajillo chilies, stems and seeds removed
3 cloves garlic, unpeeled
2 dried avocado leaves (no idea if we can find these)
1/4 cup achiote paste
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 1/2 tablespoons coarse kosher salt
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup chicken stock
12 corn tortillas, warmed
Here’s a bit of nostalgia, courtesy of lovely Linda O. This looks soooo much better than my ghetto photocopy from days gone by. Many thanks!
Hop into this Tex-Mex time machine from November 1982:
Says Linda: “I made the Nacho Casserole a bunch of times many years ago, and then just a few months ago I whipped it up for a dinner and it was as enjoyable as ever!”
The same issue also had a recipe for shortbread, not shown.
The ’80s was Tex-Mex crazy, and this page is a hilarious reminder. There was also a fajita recipe page: Zest of the West. If anyone has it, please share!
An old recipe for Stampede time, from Jean Hoare – Driftwillow Ranch, Stavely, Alberta
SERVES 6 to 8
1-1/2 cups assorted dried beans
Water to cover beans
1 large onion
8 whole cloves
¼ cup ea molasses, brown sugar, maple syrup
½ cup ketchup or chili sauce
1 tbsp dry mustard
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
½ cup boiling bean water
diced salt pork, bacon ends or leftover baked ham
Beans may include one or more of the following: small white navy beans, the larger Great Northern beans, pinto, limas, kidney, blackeye, garbanzos or chick peas.
Put assorted beans into a large heavy pot and cover with water, about three or four times as much water as beans. Let stand overnight. Drain and cover with fresh water. Cover, bring to a boil, then simmer slowly until tender. Test for doneness of beans by blowing on them. If done, the skins will blow off. The small navy bean will take the longest to cook. Do not add meat or other ingredients yet or the beans will not soften. They should boil alone in water until tender.
When beans are tender, drain reserving the liquid. Stick whole cloves into the onion and add to the cooked beans. Add molasses, brown sugar, maple syrup, ketchup, dry mustard, salt, Worcestershire sauce and half the reserved liquid. Add meat. Cover and bake at 250○ F for 6 to 9 hours, adding extra bean water or more ketchup if the mixture becomes dry. Uncover for the last half hour and adjust seasonings, if necessary.
For camp, prepare the beans up to the final baking stage. Then dig a hole at least 4 inches deeper than the heavy iron bean pot. Prepare enough coals to have a good layer underneath the pot and on top of it. Put the bottom layer of hot coals into the hole, then lower the pot into the hole, covering the lid with foil to keep out any dirt. Cover with remaining coals and bury with at least 3 inches of dirt. Bake in the pit for at least 4 hours, watching that the dirt stays in place, thus holding in the heat.
A final word about beans. To speed up the soaking process, cover the dried beans with water, bring to a boil and simmer for 2 minutes. Then remove from heat and let stand, tightly covered, for 1 hour. Blanching beans like this is equivalent to about 8 hours soaking.
For all the nostalgic, wholesome memories of old Seventeen magazine recipe pages we share, there are some real horrors.
Deli-go-round Ready to Whirl. Or is that hurl? Circa Seventeen August 1970
“Potato salad mold for teen girls to spin up with ‘madcap olives flaunting carrot and pepper fringe.'”
The 1980s brought you dorm room cookery under a Katrina and the Waves poster. What could go wrong?
Sausage and peppers with garlic toast and a tomato mozzarella salad with banana s’more tarts for dessert? Served with a side of sweat socks.
The sandwich press only adds to the horror:
Or the assistance of “mini machines” for all your instant, ulp, food supplies…