I discovered a host of memories in my mailbox today – handwritten recipes from my Nana and Bampa’s kitchen. My aunt had come across them recently and was so sweet to send them to me. In an instant, a flood of memories came rushing back – their kitchen, the credenza in the dining room that always held a stack of bananas that needed ripening and my Bampa’s infamous chocolate pie, my small high chair/step stool that sat smack dab in the center of the kitchen and the big supersized bottle of Chivas Regal that was always present. It’s amazing how seeing someone’s handwriting was like a memory time portal.
These recipes definitely reflect the time period. There was a recipe from the 50s for a Tuna Casserole, a Frozen Pear Salad that incorporates French dressing (!), and one that took me by surprise – a Shrimp Wonton recipe that is a bit daunting. I had no idea that my Bampa even dabbled in Asian cuisine. However, this recipe for Tuna Loaf that was noted "1973 Meat Boycott" was one that piqued the curiosity. I always pictured meatloaf with meat – not tuna. I don’t know if I might try to update this particular one for the times but here his recipe in the entirety.
- 2 seven ounce cans of tuna, flaked
- 1 can of cream of celery soup (undiluted)
- 1/2 cup of chopped onion
- 1 tablespoon of lemon juice
- 2 eggs, slightly beaten
- Mix all ingredients together. Mixture will be soft after mixed together.
- Place in loaf dish/pan in an oven preheated to 375 degrees for an hour. [Note: there’s also a notation that you might want to try it at 350 degrees for 45 to 60 minutes]
- After baking, place on platter, loaf inverted and, if wished, cover with can of cream of celery soup, diluted with 1/3 cup of milk.
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