Jell-O and the Kewpies

Jell-O and the Kewpies. New York: American Lithographic Co., 1915.

When I was twelve years old, we moved from a semi-suburban, overwhelmingly Mormon neighborhood to a neighborhood full of hippies. My Jell-O consumption, already shaken by the disappearance of my beloved Jell-O 1-2-3, took a nosedive. Gone were the block parties and […]

Child’s Play

Oliver, Michel. La Cuisine Est Un Jeu D’Enfants. Paris: Plon, 1963.

Brief infatuation with From Mr. Bingle’s Kitchen aside (the recipe for fruit pizza was and is awesome), I never had much interest in children’s cookbooks. I was a strictly Better Homes and Gardens kind of girl. (I have a […]

The Best-Feeding Merchant Marine in the World

War Shipping Administration, Food Control Division. Cooking and Baking on Shipboard. Washington: GPO, 1945. 358pp.

The Food Control Division of the War Shipping Administration (the agency that oversaw Merchant Marine ships during WWII) published several books about managing food and cooking while at sea. Though I don’t use it much for recipes […]

Passing the Soup Before Passing Out

Erlanger, Baba and Daren Pierce. The Compleat Martini Cook Book. Illus. Elizabeth Fraser. New York: Random Thoughts, 1957.

My mother barely drinks at all, and while my father does, it’s in a decidedly unglamorous cans-of-bud-lite and jugs-or-sometimes-even-boxes-of-red-wine kind of way. Either because, or perhaps in spite of my upbringing, I’ve always liked the idea […]

The Laziest Housekeeper in Europe

Lowinsky, Ruth. Lovely Food: A Cookery Notebook. London: The Nonesuch Press, 1931. 8vo. 127pp

Published in 1931, Lovely Food was the work of an English socialite and hostess, Ruth Lowinsky. Her husband, Thomas, was a Surrealist painter, and they collaborated on the book. She wrote the menus and the recipes; he drew centerpieces […]