A few christmases ago, my mom gave me one of the best gifts ever: a set of McCall’s cookbooks from 1965. I grew up eating so many recipes from these pages, and had always told her that I wanted her set when she didn’t need them anymore. To speed up the timeline of receiving them, she searched the internet for a set in far better condition than her own. It was such a fantastic surprise to receive all 18 books, with the index book and holder, in such great shape.
Due to many circumstances (especially the whole thing where I’m a vegan), these books have sat in my possession, unused, but remaining in the back of my mind. Last Thanksgiving, I was talking to my sister-in-law about an idea I’d been playing with – what about taking some of these recipes and making them vegan, or updating them?
Well, it’s taken me nearly a year to get to the point where I felt like I could do this, so here it is: Vintage Goes Vegan. I’ve gone through all 18 books, and pulled 111 recipes – that’s 6 breakfasts, 5 appetizers, 5 salads, 8 soups, 4 sandwiches, 11 side dishes, 48 (!!!) main dishes, 19 desserts, and a 5-course Thanksgiving menu. Some of them I’m keeping as close to the original recipe as possible, and some of them are being updated to reflect a more modern food availability. Remember, these recipes were written in 1965, when I’m fairly certain there wasn’t a single american who had heard of a vegan (and these people really loved their gelatin molds…).
I wanted to start out with a recipe that I could keep close to the original, and one that also gave everyone a good idea of what I was going to be dealing with in this venture. So, without further ado, here’s a recipe that had me gagging when I read it: the Peanut Butter ‘N’ Bacon Sandwich.
|1/2 cup creamy or chunk-style peanut butter|
|1/2 cup chopped crisp-cooked bacon (I subbed LightLife Smart Bacon here, because I knew it would be crispier than tempeh bacon)|
|3 tablespoons sweet pickle relish, drained|
|2 tablespoons chopped stuffed olives|
|2 tablespoons mayonnaise (Vegenaise was my choice here, but take your pick)|
|12 slices bread|
For the record, I did cut this down – the measurements you see above are for 6 sandwiches, and since it’s just me, I cut everything into 1/6ths as best I could. A single sandwich would need:
|4 teaspoons creamy or chunk-style peanut butter|
|about 2 slices chopped crisp-cooked bacon|
|a little shy of 1 tablespoon sweet pickle relish, drained|
|2 chopped stuffed olives|
|1 1/2 teaspoons mayonnaise|
|2 slices bread|
Do you understand why I would be gagging? Mayonnaise and peanut butter is bad, but relish and olives?!?! Yuck. Who came up with this?!
|1. Combine all ingredients, except bread; mix well.|
|2. Use to fill 6 sandwiches. Cut in quarters.|
That’s it. They recommend buttering the bread too, but I went ahead and skipped that step. I couldn’t imagine why I would need to!
So, there you have it. A very simple, and very odd, first recipe for Vintage Goes Vegan. The verdict? I’m ashamed to say it was actually not as horrifying as it sounds, although I don’t think I’ll jump at the opportunity to eat it again.