4-15: Scalloped Onions

4-15: Scalloped Onions

“It smells like weird Mexican food in here,” Jamie said as she walked in the door. She wasn’t wrong. The example image sets a rustic farm tone with the watering can, basket of red peppers, and parmesan cheese in the background. The watering can even has onions painted on it. Awesome!

When I saw that it will need reheating before eating, I decided to make this dish in a large rectangle Pyrex. I made this recipe at half size to accommodate the baking dish. I only used two onions because Simply Delicious bases the number of onions on the smaller onions that were available when these recipes were written. Two was more than enough.


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15-36: Pear-Orange Sorbet

15-36: Pear-Orange Sorbet

The photo of this delectable dish is enhanced by the superior dishware chosen to accentuate the fluffiness of the iced desert within. I made 15-36: Pear-Orange Sorbet before a few years ago when we first started this project, but I forgot to take photos. I finally got back to it in January 2019.

The recipe card describes this dish about as well as I could. The ripe pears did have an intense fruity flavor that was intriguing. Can’t beat that.


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1-2: Marinated Stuffed Avocado

1-2: Marinated Stuffed Avocado

Avocados have been a pretty big part of my culinary life up until now, but that’s probably because they’re pretty hard to avoid here in California. However, my experiences are usually closer to some nice fresh guacamole or some avocado toast–1-2: Marinated Stuffed Avocado was relatively new territory for me.

I suppose it’s not unheard of, it’s just not something I think to do. I may try it again, maybe with some different ingredients. Mushrooms are okay, but I much prefer them cooked rather than raw.


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4-14: Stuffed Artichokes

4-14: Stuffed Artichokes

Hot Take: Artichokes are the lobster of the vegetable world. 4-14: Stuffed Artichokes represents this well: too much work for too little satisfaction. Peeling the little leaves off the artichoke and harvesting the heart feels a lot like picking apart the carapace of an undersea crustacean.

Stuffing an artichoke with a mushroom stew is a unique way to serve this giant edible thistle flower. These plants don’t grow naturally where I’m from, so my experience with artichokes only came after moving to California. My favorite way to enjoy them is marinated artichoke hearts.


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16-33: Crispy Almond Cake

16-33: Crispy Almond Cake

I made 16-33: Crispy Almond Cake last September to pair with 16-26: Elegant Almond Cake as a breakfast treat for my work colleagues. This one was the less fancy of the two, but still went extremely well with some coffee on a Wednesday morning.

This title card blurb mentions that versions of this almond cake can be found all over the United States–Google doesn’t seem to want to confirm that claim for me. Searching almond cake results in several iterations of a Spanish flourless almond cake influenced by the Jewish tradition of Passover. Interesting, but none of them look like this recipe.

A search for almond tart (see 16-26: Elegant Almond Cake for my argument that these two dishes are tarts, not cakes as Simply Delicious claims) comes much closer–here’s a very similar version (with video!) from Martha Stewart herself.


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8-43: Chinese Beef and Rice

8-43: Chinese Beef and Rice

8-43: Chinese Beef and Rice is essentially beef stir-fry served with some rice, but it’s done in less than 30 minutes, which is a big plus. This one goes along with several other Chinese restaurant-style dishes that Simply Delicious has featured, including 6-11: Chinese Duck and 11-36: Hong Kong Shrimp.

Chinese cuisine is a lot more prevalent today in the United States than it was 30-40 years ago when Simply Delicious was being written & printed. I suppose we have cookbooks like this to thank in some small part for introducing many 1980s American families to a more global palate.

Speaking of a global palate–I made this dish vegan. Yes, that picture above is vegan–keep reading to find out how. #clickbait


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16-26: Elegant Almond Cake

16-26: Elegant Almond Cake

A few months ago, I made two Simply Delicious almond cakes for work: this one, 16-26: Elegant Almond Cake and 16-33: Crispy Almond Cake. I think this one came out prettier, but they were both delicious.

Simply Delicious doesn’t mention this in their blurb, but it’s also great for accompanying coffee or tea on a Wednesday morning at the office. They also refer to this dish as a cake, but it’s very clearly a tart. To confirm, here’s a recipe from King Arthur Flour that is essentially this exact same dish (referred to a tart) but with raspberries instead of Maraschino cherries.


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11-6: Sweet and Sour Shrimp

11-6: Sweet and Sour Shrimp

11-6: Sweet and Sour Shrimp is another of those dishes that I’d love to order from a restaurant and would not think to make at home. Simply Delicious has quite a few Chinese restaurant-style dishes, including 6-27: Sweet and Sour Chicken, 6-11: Chinese Duck, and 11-36: Hong Kong Shrimp.

It just so happens that Sweet and Sour Sauce is my favorite version of any dish on a Chinese menu. Shrimp is a decent choice.


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7-33: Country Dinner

7-33: Country Dinner

We’re getting to the some of the last recipes I have for some of these chapters, and 7-33: Country Dinner is one of the few remaining entries from the Pork chapter of Simply Delicious. Honestly, this recipe as it exists is not much more than mashed potatoes with bacon and onions. That doesn’t sound bad per se, but I don’t know if it constitutes “dinner”.

Google only gave me a few results for similar recipes, but I’m pretty sure this isn’t too far off from the mashed potato bowls you can get at like KFC. If anything, the KFC ones come with more stuff in them.


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15-29: Raspberry-Lemon Parfait

15-29: Raspberry-Lemon Parfait

A nice, cool parfait is the perfect dish for summertime. Raspberry and lemon are two of my favorite flavors and they blend together nicely to create this creamy dessert. My version of 15-29: Raspberry-Lemon Parfait will look much different from what you see here, but it is equally as delicious even though it is lactose-free. 

The set designer and photographer did a particularly good job of staging the photo for this recipe card. The fresh raspberries and lemon rind really add a nice pop of color. The choice of tablecloth, wine, grapes, and flowers each provide a nice contrast to the yellow and white creamy colors of the dish and the parfait itself. 

Editor’s note: This entry was written last summer, but didn’t get posted until now.


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