Sunday, January 15, 2012

The More Things Change. . .

Sorting through old cookbooks to decide which ones to donate has been something of a challenge.  However, I have come across a few treasures that I intend to keep. 

One such treasure, and I have two copies, is a microwave cookbook.  This one came with the very first microwave that I bought in 1981.  My mother bought one just like it, so that ‘s the reason for two.  In those days microwaves were just becoming really affordable to the average person and even a portable microwave was big by today’s standards.  Another reason they were big was because everyone thought that people were actually going to COOK in them.  Hence, the many-paged hardback cookbook.  This book includes directions for thawing and cooking a turkey—it was big enough—elaborately browning and cooking t-bone steaks, and baking cakes.  I hadn’t looked at it in years, but I’m glad I did.  There are actually some good recipes and cooking methods in there that I’ve sort of forgotten about over the years.  Their method for cooking frozen corn on the cob is excellent.  Their method for softening an acorn squash to make it cut more easily is helpful.  And there are many vegetable recipes that were very good, much better than just popping in a Steamable.

I also remembered that their method of cooking fish fillets in lemon butter sauce produced better results than I ever got in an oven.  (Place in dish with thickest parts to the outside, cover with seasonings, cracker crumbs, and lemon butter, put waxed paper over the top, and cook until flaky.  In those days, you had to rotate halfway through.)  I tried it again last week on some Tilapia and was very pleased.  I used to do this all the time when we first got the microwave, but then my daughter turned out to have an allergy to fish—not just a food allergy but a severe reaction to exposure to fish in any form—so I had completely forgotten about it.  If I remember correctly, there were some pretty good chicken recipes in this book as well. 

Anyway, I’m looking forward to trying out some of these old recipes again.  What I’m wondering is if anyone else out there has a good recipe that is microwave prepared.  I don’t ever see anyone sharing those anymore—everything seems to be grills or crockpots.

There was no knitting today, but I did weave on the Cricket.  I’m still not pleased with my edges, but they are getting better.  I’m having an enthusiasm problem.  Although I know myself better than this, I set up my first project as what would amount to a very long swatch rather than a scarf or something.  Eventually, making a great big practice swatch of no particular beauty gets really old.  I watched a couple of videos this afternoon, and I’m going to do a little more selvedge work tomorrow and then remove that item from the loom.  I have some cotton that I got from Webs just waiting for me to try making a scarf for myself.  The color is quite lovely and the yarn has some variation to cover sins a little bit.  I’m going to give that a try.

Almost time for the new Downton Abbey.  I must get another cup of tea.  Do you think the Edwardians would have heated the water in the microwave if they had one?


Deborah said...

Once out of necessity I tried to cook scrambled eggs in the microwave. I sprayed a Corningware dish with Pam and put the eggs in it. I microwaved for 2 minutes and stirred the eggs. I microwaved for 1 minute and stirred. I stopped cooking just before the eggs were done and stirred. I put the lid on the dish for about 2 minutes. They continued to cook from their own heat without getting dry. They were delicious.

Deb said...

Somehow I can't imagine Mr. Carson approving of microwaving!

knitgiver said...

My favorite recipe for meatloaf is from my Kenmore Microwave cookbook. Basically, it's the normal recipe most folks are used to with the tomato sauce type topping, but then you put it in a round glass casserole dish with a little overturned cup in the middle (it drains the grease), and cook on high for 14 minutes. Best meatloaf ever! PS I really enjoy reading your blog!