If you were around in the 1980s-1990s, you may remember the obsession with low-fat everything, and finding ways to make “sinful indulgences” into something “guilt-free“. Note the deliberate choice of words, and that we still use that type of psychological framing around food today (and have been for a long time, even prior to the era in question).
The “low-calorie swap” in 16-42: Easy Lime Pie is cottage cheese, which was all the rage in the 1970s as a “healthy” option, but could still be found in a lot of recipes throughout the 80s and 90s.
I feel like even Simply Delicious didn’t really know how to make this pie sound appealing–do you think halved grapes as a garnish can be considered something notable? You can definitely tell this particular recipe was aimed at the dieting/low-calorie crowd.
This project is coming up on 4 years old, and I’m a handful of recipes away from finishing the Baked Goods chapter–at least, according to the collection that I have. There’s definitely some out there that I don’t have the card for, but here’s one of the last uncovered few (#50!) that I do have: 17-2: English Rusks. 🇬🇧☕
According to Wikipedia, English rusks are hard, dry biscuits given to babies for teething or crumbled up and used as filler for ground meat. It’s actually the US version of rusks that are more familiar–they list Melba toast and biscotti as examples.
Cooking a pizza on a pancake dough creates a very kooky, weird pizza experience. 5-31: Oven Pizza Pancake is not your usual pizza–this soft-crusted abomination is another dish created when the Simply Delicious editors decided to have one too many beers at the office.
The beer in the background of this image should have been my first clue that this was a strange dish.
Editor’s note: I used this recipe for when I taught cooking in an after-school program for K-8 kids a few years ago–I didn’t have the time or resources to make a traditional rising dough using yeast on that particular site, so this method provided me a somewhat valid shortcut.
The photo of the pie for this recipe, 16-4: Blueberry Pie is epic. The peasant blueberry picker doll in the background is a great departure from most of the photos in Simply Delicious. 👍 We bought a case of blueberries during a trip to the market because they looked super fresh. I was going to make blueberry muffins, but after flipping through the recipes, this seemed like the best choice.
The whipped cream in the receptacle looks great. Check out how they used the pie in the background as well as in the center of the photo. The blueberries scattered on the table and the baby’s breath everywhere makes this photo extra fancy. 🎩
This recipe is already setting high expectations with the title 11-25: Best Ever Sole Au Gratin, and I’m not here to completely dash those hopes. This is a pretty decent fish recipe, as those go (I’m usually wary of home-cooked fish recipes), but it’s nothing spectacular, despite Simply Delicious’ assertions. 🐟
This one gets fancy with the piping bag and tips for the potatoes. I still haven’t replaced my piping/pastry bag set-up since it all failed during the making of 17-52: Apricot Macaroons for the holidays last year (2015). Since I’ve yet to replace it, I’ll have to get creative again.
I recently attended a birthday party, and was tasked with making some of the dishes for the party (as is usually the case). Seeing as some of the guests were “old-school” about their dining preferences, I decided to use up some of the more “old-school” recipes. 1-8: Delicious Cocktail Snacks looks exactly like something a waiter would be carrying around at a fancy cocktail party in an old movie.
So retro. These were pretty easy to make, and actually held really well in the fridge before the party. I reheated them at the party and it worked great–just a thought if you need something for a party that you can make earlier, transport and/or reheat later.
I had mentioned in 6-35: Chicken Diable that I had another recipe that I needed to save some of the chicken breasts for–6-49: Cheese-Glazed Chicken Rolls was it. I don’t usually keep chicken breasts around (I think they’re dry and not particularly flavorful), so when I do have them, it’s best to try to knock out as many recipes as possible.
Here’s another potato recipe for you. I had a LOT of potatoes to cook. This was the complement to 11-16: Indian Fried Fish, which I posted a few days ago.
This one got stuck to the page before it in the book–hence the destroyed-looking card. You can still see the important parts though–these are mighty tasty. My notes indicate I made it in a chipotle-style a few Christmases ago–we’ll do it legit for this one. For science. 🔬
5-1: Mushroom and Cheese Pie…didn’t go as well as I had hoped. Following directions is important, friends. Let’s dive in–we’re still in Book 1, Group 1 (Appetizers & Starters).
We got a lot of mushrooms in our CSA box this round, and I used the Maitake mushrooms for another recipe from this book, but forgot to photograph it. And as the internet says, “pics or it didn’t happen”. So, I decided to use the White Beech mushrooms for this recipe.