Bananas Take A Bow.... is a recent favorite of mine. The Meloripe Fruit Company's 1940 set of 'attractive new dishes for the up-to-date hostess' achieves an ideal balance with its combination of jazzy anthropomorphic bananas and foods that should really not be combined with bananas.
Front cover - The Bananas do a triumphant jig over the dish deemed representative of the entire book. You know how precious this book will be just by the front cover.
Meet the Banana! You'd be hard-pressed to find a more exciting page than this in any cookbook anywhere. And if there's one promise this book fulfills, it's demonstrating 'New Rôles' for bananas. If you wish that you could get a closer look at some of these gorgeous drawings, you're in luck. Here are a few zooms of the left side of the header, the right side of the header, and that adorable Bunch O' Bananas at the bottom of the page.
Some information on the nutritive value of bananas.. complete with dancing letters!
'Try Cooked Bananas for distinctive new flavor....': It's amazing how different cooked bananas are, and it's amazing how much they love to be cooked. Look, they're dancing right into the lady's frying pan! Here's an enlargement of that scene.
Banana.. SCALLOPS?? Yes, banana scallops are the perfect companion to your roasts, chops, or fish dinners! As the book mulls over the dubiousness of this recipe, it ends with a persuasive, 'taste that taste...' Well, you convinced me!
If you think bananas masquerading as shellfish is wrong, feast your eyes on Banana Meat Loaf! I mean, technically, there are only five bananas in it. That's not really that much more than what's in a traditional meatloaf recipe. My only regret is that there are no pictures for Bananas Au Gratin and Sausages Baked in Bananas.
By the time we reach the salads page, the chefs have run out of ideas. The Banana Pineapple Rounds salad is just a banana bound by two pineapple rings, lounging on a bed of greens! Better that than the Banana Salmon Salad, I guess.
This page promises that 'now you can actually drink a banana.' Clearly the technological advancements in the 1940s were awe-inspiring. I actually included this page for the Menu Planning feature. Let's assume your interest in cooked bananas has been piqued by this fantastic cookbook but you worry over what you could possibly serve with them. Well, look no further than this page! I recommend the Baked Corned Beef Hash menu at the bottom.
Back cover - The banana color chart