precision ingredients and other ephemera

October 7, 2012

I thought about having a garage sale a few weekends ago but then realized I really didn’t have enough crap. Let’s face it… the sole purpose of garage sales is to keep crap in a perpetual state of circulation. Sometimes you’re the person getting rid of the crap–sometimes you’re the person accumulating the crap.

I guess my crap moon is waxing.

I came across an accordion folder full of small recipe books at a garage sale a few weekends ago. I have a perverse fascination with graphic ephemera from the past so I had to take these home.

Long before Blogs, Facebook Likes and Twitter feeds, corporations ranging from insurance companies to appliance manufacturers relied on getting their brand into the hands of homemakers via these delightful little cookbooks. After some very brief research there’s a whole community of people that collect these things. I present to you a few of the gems that I will no doubt circulate at my next garage sale. Please come take this crap off my hands.

Brought to you by the good people at Baker’s Coconut. I adore this cover especially the blue ribbon.

“Let your imagination run riot with coconut!” I love the dramatic copy, “…originate your own lovely triumphs…”

What I love most about this is the General Motors Frigidaire logo. I feel like this was co-sponsored by the lettuce growers association. Also, what kind of food is this? 

Mmmm… strawberry cheese salad. More please!

The subtext on this is hysterical… Healthy and Tested recipes! Like fried chicken and fried potatoes! And it’s so white… I just know it’s purer! And foods fried in Spry are as digestible as if baked or broiled! 

This cookbook is kind of interesting because it was published by Metropolitan Life Insurance. Shockingly, this cookbook actually contains a modicum of healthy recipes. (Well, with exception to the peanut butter soup recipe.) Not only did this cookbook discourage fatty meats for breakfast (for adults) but encouraged a fairly modern diet for the time. And how amazing are those salt and pepper shakers?

I love the script typeface.

This is all you need to know about tapioca as a “precision ingredient”. What a fucking amazing description.

Successful recipes by “The Mystery Chef”! I’m kind of in love with this woman. Look at that fabulous top!

This concludes my treasure trove of mini-cookbooks. I leave you with this recipe from the good people at Metropolitan Life.



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