We had our friends and neighbors the Maly's, Kathy & Frank, over for dinner on Saturday. Kathy is a wonderful cook and I am always a bit intimidated preparing food for them. I decided to use my 1940's cookbook, The Boston School of Cooking Cookbook, 1941, by Fannie Merritt Farmer and prepare the entire meal, well most of it, from this book. Wanted a theme and given the book went with the 1940's.
Appetizers: Started with canapes, toasted bread on one side then added toppings, all on the untoasted side: Spread peanut butter with small cooked, minced bacon, tomatoes and cheese, chopped olives, mixed with Dijon mustard and minced almonds, pimento and cheese, cheese and bacon, you get it, really anything, topped then broiled for a few minutes, they were great.
Then shrimp cocktails, served in more Hawkes glasses lined with Boston Bibb lettuce, homemade sauce and lemon wedges.
Cocktails: I have an antique cut crystal and silver cocktail shaker so I made gin martinis and whiskey sours, all served "up" in my antique Hawkes crystal cocktail glasses. Served wines with the courses too of course.
Dinner: Chicken casserole: browned split chicken breasts and placed in casserole then topped with sauteed onions, browned potato balls, carrots and bacon, added to a brown sauce and poured over the chicken and baked, covered, for 45+minutes.
Sides: Cooked 6 potatoes, cooled, then cubed. Boiled a green pepper for 6 minutes, cooled and minced added to the potatoes with 2 C milk, brought to a boil then placed in casserole and topped with Parmesan cheese. heated for 20 minutes.
Carrots: Cooked five carrots, placed in a food processor, and mixed with milk and Parmesan cheese, baked in a water bath for one hour.
All of these went very well together. Cooks in the 1940's obviously had more time than we do today, but it was a Saturday.
Dessert: Kathy brought one of my favorite desserts, lemon meringue pie. What a great dinner. The 40's were a great decade. Wish I had experienced first hand - well maybe!