September 22, 2009

"All Maine Cooking" Cookbook

After her visit to Baxter State Park, my friend Melanie stayed with me for a night and brought me a gift! Seems that she stopped in Bangor to stretch her legs, found a used bookstore, and in it, this cookbook.

The "All-Maine Cooking" cookbook was published in 1967 and is compiled of recipes submitted by Mainers, including the two Senators of the time.  The recipes are organized by county, although it seems that there is not necessarily a connection between either the submitter's residence or the recipe's origin.

The recipes are representative of a plainer style of American cooking; frequently recipes call for a can of cream of chicken soup or shredded American cheese.  But no doubt, some of the seafood recipes represent some fine Maine fare.

One Hancock County recipe, titled "Becky's Sloppy Hamburgers," is subtitled (Teen-age Specialty) and contains the note at the end of the recipe that, "Most teen-agers like to top the [Sloppy Joe] mixture with the other half of the bun and eat like a hamburger." Are we learning that the Sloppy Joe was invented in Maine?

But despite the recipes for Baked Pickled Tripe and Sunday Supper Casserole (comprised of potatoes, shredded American cheese, and deli lunch meat!), there are a lot of delicious sounding recipes for baked goods and seafood.  And you've gotta respect any cookbook that contains a recipe that starts with, "Put a good chunk of lard in the frying pan and let it get real hot."

Yes ma'am!