Thursday, June 07, 2007

Rachael Ray didn't invent these
--Meat Puffs

Meat Puffs
Our Favorite Meats Favorites From Home Economic Teachers Copyright MCMLXVI(1966?)

¼ c. chopped onion
1 tbsp. butter
2 eggs, beaten
1 lb. ground beef
½ c. fine dry bread crumbs
½ c. chili sauce
1 tsp. salt I just used a sprinkle
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
¾ c. milk

Cook onion in butter for 3 minutes. Combine eggs, beef, crumbs, ¼ cup chili sauce, salt, Worcestershire sauce and milk with cooked onion mixture. Mix well but do not knead (knead? ha! This was almost like pancake batter). Place in greased muffin pan and spread with remaining chili sauce. Bake in preheated 375 degree oven for 30 minutes.

Yields 8 puffs (I got 9).

I've made mini-meat loaves (or meat muffins as Rachael Ray calls them) plenty of times in the past. I like how much faster they cook than a regular meat loaf. I've never seen them called 'meat puffs' before but my husband seemed to get a kick out of the name.

I got distracted and forgot to add the last three ingredients at first. I had to put the meat back in the bowl and mix them in, even though I knew I would end up with goop. I knew from experience, however, that the more liquid you can get into meatballs or meatloaf, the more tender they usually end up. So I had faith and scooped the goop into the muffin pan. They came out firm yet tender. They stuck just a bit to the muffin pan but I managed to get them all out in relatively one piece. There were no leftovers.

This is one of the cookbooks I picked up at the auction. It contains over 2000 recipes from home-ec teachers across the country. My alma mater wasn't even in existence in the 60s when this book was compiled but I did find a recipe from a woman who taught at it's predecessor. It was for orange-glazed pork chops which sounds good until you see that there are 10 whole cloves thrown in and never removed (unless you're just supposed to know better). Can you imagine biting into a clove? Yuck!

I got a kick out of reading the old-fashioned names in the book. The Board of Advisory Editors had two Dorothys, two Ruths, one Imogene (among others). I'm sure these names will come back in fashion someday.

I don't remember too much about home-ec. I wasn't crazy about sewing. The only recipes I remember making as a class were a vegetable dip (dry salad dressing mixed with mayo and/or sour cream) and a strawberry whip pie in a chocolate crust (meh). I never took the cooking elective they offered in high school. I was cooking dinner every night at home so I guess that satisfied me.

What's really sad is that a few years ago my nephew made this really nice gym bag in home-ec. I guess more boys now take home-ec (or whatever it's called these days), either by choice or it might be required. That bag was much nicer and well-made than either of my sewing projects (letter pillows that spelled out your name and a make-up bag). Oh well, he has wonderful artistic talent, something I lacked back then and still now.

Blast From The Past: Brown Sugar Meat Loaf from October 2005. That's a favorite meat loaf recipe of mine but it may be competing with this recipe from now on.

Question of the Day: Did you take home economics in high school? Did you learn anything?


ThursdayNext said...

I make a mini meatloaf recipe of Ina Garten's that I really like. :) I took home-ec in middle school and learned about measuring, which was really important because of the various sugars and flours that need packing, leveling, etc.

Anonymous said...

Hmmm... I didn't take home ec, but I did have a science teacher in middle school that for a final project had all the boys put together a lawn mower engine and all the girls cook something.
I'm worried that "Jennifer" will be the future old lady name equivalent of "Ruth".... Many 1970's Jennifer's, not so many now.

Randi said...

I loved Home-Ec in HS, but hated it in middle school. I hated sewing and I think I got a D. I got an A in cooking though!! I know someone who teaches it in BC and its called Food Arts!!

MommyProf said...

I took it in junior high and learned a lot about how to cook and that I have 10 thumbs when it comes to sewing.

Wanda said...

I have some of those cookbooks and have consulted them a lot over the years. We were selling them when I was in high school, and I have the desserts and foreign foods volume...and maybe one more. We were required to take 4 yrs. of homemaking, as it was called, in high school. I didn't like it much at all. We had to sew something each year, including putting in zippers and a buttenhole and I really hated that. Cooking wasn't so bad. From my freshman year, I learned a recipe for Taghlerini (???? or something like that) that evolved into my 'goulash' recipe that I raised my family on. I still make it. And I bet it is nothing like the original recipe.
We had to enter something in the sewing and the cooking division of the county show each year, and my second year I won 1st place in the county with my chocolate cookies - a recipe I found a made for the first time the day before the competition.
I share your interest in names. I have always, even as a child, been very interested in names.

The Cookbook Junkie said...

You know Wanda, I was wondering if there were other versions of this book and I was thinking the dessert one would be really interesting. Hmm, I just checked and I can get the dessert version on Amazon (used).

Must resist. Must resist. Must resist. Must resist. Must resist.

Jennifer, that is so horrible about he science project but even in the 80's only one girl took shop class and one boy took home ec which was a shame (that we stuck to the gender stereotypes). I'm still clueless when it comes to engines or electronics.

Anonymous said...

I took "foods" in junior high but nothing like that in high school. My oldest is in high school now and I'm not sure they even offer anything like that where he goes. (His electives next year will be Japanese, Robotics and Psychology).

I like the meatloaves in the muffin pans -- I have one that is an old Weight Watchers recipe that I'll need to dig out once it cools down a bit (or we get deeper into summer and I don't mind turning the oven on).

Anonymous said...

I took the classes three years in high school. I learned to sew and was glad of that - made a lot of my clothes throughout those years. When my daughter was in high school, I was able to make costumes for the stage productions she was in. I wish I had time to sew now.
I guess I learned something about cooking in class, but I really don't remember what. I do remember we made a dinner for all the mothers. All I can remember of it were the mashed potatoes!