Husted Collection Curios: My Better Homes & Gardens Cook Book, by & for the desperate housewives of 1930
***Part of a semiregular series about my findings at the Margaret Husted Culinary Collection—a remarkable, undersung cookbook archive whose 1000s of specimens run the gamut from serious historical finds to quirky flukes.***
It’s falling apart on the inside as well as the outside.
their souls were surely clawing ceaselessly to escape the gaping maw of the dark within. At least, that is, if the frantically cheerful, culinarily delusional &/or creepily suggestive headnotes are any indication. In all 3 categories:
In the generation-gap category: Tuna mousse is doubtless “tops with high-schoolers” (oh, kids today & their fish-pulp)! In the zonked-out-Stepford-Wives category: Shrimp-orange salad’s “pretty, fresh-tasting, and a company puzzler.” (Because everything’s hard to figure after a few highballs. “Jeepers, am I one zozzled tootsie, or is this salad some kind of trick?“) In the no-cuisine-please-we’re-American category: “Lemon gives lamb a chickeny taste and color!” In the “gee,-I-hope-you-didn’t-go-to-any-trouble-on-my-account” category: Hawaiian ham “has that just-made-for-you look guests go for!”
One can only sigh dreamily to picture the editorial meetings around a tableful of auburn-coiffed, milk-skinned dames moving from purrs to shrieks, the skeletons of one another’s hubbies dancing in their mental closets all the while.