Monday, December 25, 2006

NoneSuch: Experiments in Mince Meat

In 1971, the Borden Company attempted to reintroduce a "lost" ingredient into the American dining experience. An ingredient so "surprising", so "different" that Americans had banished it from their collective memory. So, when Borden published its NoneSuch Cookbook: Nobody Cooks This Way Anymore in 1971, it was both to persuade the new generation that there was something missing from their diets and to lament that, indeed, nobody cooked that way anymore. What could this ingredient be that inspired such extreme and disparate emotions? Why, it's mince meat! Seeing as mince meat seems to be a holiday tradition for some, I thought the timing was right for this set of recipes. This booklet only leaves me with one question: did its psychedelic graphics and celebration of jarred.. whatever it is really have more of the new generation reaching for that jar in the supermarket?

(As always, click for enlarged pictures)

1. Front cover - If the generic Peter Max-style psychedelia doesn't highlight the hipness of this jarred concoction, then, at least it probably helped it blend in less offensively.

2. A persuasive argument for the necessity of reviving the lost art of cooking with mince meat. Unfortunately, this is where I discovered that there is sometimes beef mixed in with the apples, cloves, and raisins. Who eats this stuff?!

3. Here, Borden insinuates that all our mince meatless breakfasts are not real breakfasts. If you want a real breakfast, try omelet or sausages smothered in mince meat sauce!

4. Incredible Vegetables - Well, they are pretty hard to believe.

5. Hot Stuff! It all gets worse from here, folks. If you've just eaten lunch, you may not want to continue.

6. Curry On.. I mean, hurry on past this picture! Similar to Manwich, all of these dishes are identical and unidentifiable.

7. The Meat of the Matter - The perfect companion to meat is mince meat.

8. For the Birds - An improbable holiday feast

9. The tamer Happy Endings page

10. Goblin Cookies and other Goodies to Gobble - Dour, pasty-faced lads (the goblins) and other baked delights

11. Back cover - More far-out art in calmer, more settling colors