My mother-in-law was cleaning out her kitchen the other day and passed a shopping bag full of stuff on to me. The two gems in the bag were a madeleine pan and this, The Metropolitan Cook Book. This little pamphlet was put out by the Metropolitan Life Insurance Company in 1957. Now you would think it would be in a life insurance company’s best interest to keep you alive as long as possible, but with recipes like “cheese fondue” with 3 cups of cheese and 4 eggs, it’s a wonder that they didn’t go bankrupt.
But it isn’t the recipes that make me love this little book, it’s the illustrations. Sadly, the illustrator did not get credit, but how can you look at all these little smiling veggies and pork chops and not smile yourself? Or at least be slightly disturbed.
The following are a couple of my favorites. Just a warning, if you are border line vegetarian these may push you over the edge.
Here’s we see a pot roast in some sort of drug induced stupor begin carted around by happy-go-lucky pork chops carrying what appear to be sprigs of parsley. Where are they taking him? Are they offering him to the humans so they themselves won’t be eaten? We may never know.
And if you didn’t feel sorry for the pot roast, how can you not feel sorry for this poor schmuck? Not only is this guy about about to be broiled and eaten, but he’s got these little creeps mocking him. You think there would be a little aquatic solidarity, but no, they think they’re safe in their little bowl. Just you wait little fish, just you wait!