Friday, October 28, 2016

Paid advertisement

I feel like I need to post something here today, but I'm also trying to actively weed out cookbooks today.  So why don't you click that link up to the top right and see if you'd like to take it off my hands? I've got a couple of real goodies coming up.
No, seriously.

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You need these books more than I do.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

1971 Reviews of 2016 restaurants in the Twin Cities and area

An Uncommon Dining Guide to the Twin Cities (1971), by Nina McGuire and Barbara Budd

There aren't too many of the restaurants listed in here that are still around in one form or another. Off the top of my head, this is it.  I tried to keep spelling and punctuation intact.  And yes, I know I'm cheating more than a little by including Fuji-Ya.

"Many years ago a man and his wife and their sons opened a small restaurant in the Northeastern section of Minneapolis. From that humble beginning, has grown the wonderful Jax Café. In the summertime, dine in the Old World Garden. It is outdoor dining at its best in the Twin Cities. The menu features lobster, prime ribs, fresh-caught rainbow trout (in season only), and a super-secret, super-delicious Roquefort dressing. The menu is extensive. The food and atmosphere are delightful."
"Jax Café periodically offers a Pheasant Night. It is but slightly advertised and is sold out almost immediately. And no wonder! The dinner is priced at $6.50. It includes soup, Caesar salad, pheasant served with wild rice, vegetables, rolls, coffee and a flaming dessert. Not only is this meal delicious, Jax makes it a fun evening at very fair prices."
"Although they are scheduled somewhat infrequently, watch for a small notice in your newspaper that Jax Café is planning a Cape Cod Night. The dinner is served in an upstairs room and begins with a magnificent seafood buffet. The main course, of course, is boiled lobster with all the Cape Cod trimmings. Dessert and coffee follow. This is a colorful and appealing meal. It is priced at $8.95 per person."

Jax Cafe

"We sometimes forget how very close the rolling farmland is to our metropolitan Twin Cities and always look forward to a leisurely drive to the Chanhassen Dinner Theater. Here, within a small town, is a highly sophisticated complex of shops, restaurants, night clubs and theaters. All together these compromise [sic] the Chanhassen Frontier.

We particularly enjoy entering the Dinner Theater early and seeing those tiers of beautifully set tables waiting. The crystal and silver gleam in the diffused lighting, the linen is stiffly starched and the room is most attractive.

The menu is varied with four entrées featured within the ticket price. The service is fast and efficient with waitresses carefully trained to anticipate the pace of your dining.

Prices, including entrée (but not appetizer, dessert, or drinks), range from $6.75 to $9.95 depending upon seat location and performance date."

The Chanhassen Frontier Dinner Theater

"Mayslack’s makes the best rare roast beef sandwich we have ever eaten! Within the walls of this ‘Nordeast’ bar, crowds stand in line to sample the sandwich. It is so big and so good that it must be tried. We urge and implore you to drive to colorful Northeast Minneapolis (near the breweries) and find this Polish bar.

Park your car and stand in line to join the people salivating for a Mayslack’s sandwich. As you might imagine, draft beer and other spirits are available. Sandwiches served only at lunch!"


"Murray's is a very well-known steakhouse. We particularly enjoyed the Silver Butter Knife Steak for two (which is priced at $15.50 including a bottle of wine)."


"If you like a dark wood panelled room with a view of Lake Minnetonka, come to the Lord Fletcher. This location is so popular that there is often a short wait for a table. Step downstairs, if you must wait, and either have a drink or step outside to the lower pavilion and a close look at the lake.

The buffet is ample. We always enjoy the eggs Benedict and the breakfast steaks. Waitresses keep your coffee cup filled and the waiters keep the buffet table filled for those who wish seconds.

Brunch is served on Sundays only from noon to 2 PM. It is priced at $2.95 for adults and $1.25 for children under 12. It is excellent!"

Lord Fletcher's of the Lake

"Borscht, corned beef, potato latkes, home baked rolls and bread, great pickles and pasteries combine to make a visit to Cecil's Deli and Restaurant a fun stop in St. Paul."

Cecil's Deli and Restaurant

"The college crowd at the University first made us aware of the Black Forest Inn. Is it popular! And, is the food GOOD!

All the delicious German specialties are provided in huge servings. The dining room is colorful and cheerful. Try the Black Forest Inn and realize what fun inexpensive dining can be!"

The Black Forest Inn

"Another of the favorites with in Dinkeytown is the Vescio Italian Café. The servings are ample, the food is good and the prices are reasonable! No wonder it's so busy!"

Vescio's Italian Cafe

"A large portion of our Mexican community resides in St. Paul. The Boca Chica is always busy! This would be a fun spot for the entire family to enjoy authentic Mexican dining."

Boca Chica

"The Fuji-Ya is perched above the Mississippi River. From the moment you were met at the door by a kimono clad hostess until you again leave the restaurant, the mood is reminiscent of the fine restaurants on the outskirts of Tokyo.

Plan a dinner here and phone for reservations if you wish to be seated in the Japanese manner. However, whether you select American or Japanese seating, the same supper menu awaits your dining pleasure. It hardly matters what you order. Everything is first rate. The authentic menu features tempura, sukiyaki and a steak teriyaki.

The food at the Fuji-Ya is so well-known that for years people have been trying to interest the management in permitting more people to enjoy these treats. Shortly, a ‘takeout service’ will be available from a separate location. We wish them success!

However, we hope you will plan your first taste of the Fuji-Ya’s marvelous food in an authentic atmosphere."

The Fuji-Ya

Monday, October 24, 2016

Friday, October 21, 2016


My current food book distraction.  Yes, it is as good as everybody is saying it is. Tasty-sounding recipes, lovely pictures, and text that ties food and people together.  Devouring....

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

More library fun!

My goodness!  How did I miss Michigan State University's Feeding America: The Historic American Cookbook Project?

Or the Nicole Di Bona Peterson Collection of Advertising Cookbooks at Duke University?

Or Service Through Sponge Cake, a collection of cookbooks at Indiana University/Purdue University Indianapolis?

And Kitchen Historic has a list of links to cookbooks that makes me drool.

As if I didn't already have enough reading to do!

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Libraries are your friend!

Okay, first...I'm alive.

Second...libraries are your friend.  I expect you knew that already.  However, over the weekend I was reminded of the joys that are University libraries. A couple of librarians from the University of Iowa were speaking at a conference/convention I was at, and mid-way through their presentation a lightbulb went on over my head.  Louis Szathmary...University of Iowa special collections.  I asked and was told that yes, they had his collection. The best part?  Some of it is digitized.

Louis Szathmary was a Hungarian chef and bibliophile who emigrated to the United States in 1951 and became one of the early celebrity chefs, though his television appearances were limited to other peoples' shows.  He amassed a collection of 18,000 or so food and cookery books,  pamphlets, manuscripts and menus.

Szathmary's collection, in his own words, with links

While looking at the UI special collections, I was pleased to see that they also have Evelyn Birkby's papers. Evelyn Birkby was "Iowa's Best-Known Homemaker"...she had a radio program starting in 1950, and continued on the radio until 1991. During that time she also wrote newspaper columns and books.

A link to the digitized portions of her collection

Other University collections that might be of interest (but who don't seem to be quite as into digitizing and sharing online -- I may be wrong, I haven't poked around as much as I should have before writing this) are

Kansas State University, Clementine Paddleford collection

University of Michigan, Janice Bluestein Longone Culinary Archive

Have any other suggestions for me?