The Mid-Century Supper Club revives kooky recipes of yore


Can 100% relate. Store brand soda here. It’s a “miracle” and a “wonder” that we have survived.


As I once said on another BB thread, I’ve always wanted to run a diner that offered a “real fake grilled cheese” featuring Wonder bread, Kraft American slice, griddled in margarine; and a “fake real grilled cheese” that featured a nice bakery white bread, a choice of cheeses like Muenster or Havarti or provolone, griddled in a high quality butter.

In any event, a grilled cheese sandwich and a bowl of Campbell’s tomato soup is my go-to comfort-food meal in winter. Dill pickle spear optional.


I love my mom and treasure her cooking, but her grilled cheese was so bad. White store-brand bread, store-brand lite cheese slices, miracle whip, and yellow mustard, and grilled. Gah.


My grandma made this thing, but with Miracle Whip! It’s actually pretty good if you cram some tomatoes and cheese in there, too.

I will not touch cottage cheese to this day because grandma thought it was a suitable substitute for ricotta. Runny lasagna? That’s a hard pass.


Exactly – I didn’t know until I was a late teen that you were supposed to put ricotta in pasta dishes rather than cottage cheese. It must have been a mid-century “low fat / diet / budget” substitution. It worked OK in stuffed shells because she’d mix it with some breadcrumbs and shredded cheese and the liquid would cook away, but lasagna is runny and gross with it.


Pretty sure grandma only went to the Piggly Wiggly nearest her house (at least that’s the only grocery store I recall ever going to with her). The IGA about .5 miles further away had ricotta. Mom went to IGA and made lasagna the right way.


Yes, I completely understand. Here in Alameda County, one in 5 people rely on the food bank, so we volunteer and donate whenever we can. So the Potlucks, while fun, have been a great way to raise awareness, too! Okay, maybe not ALL the salmon pickle aspic gets eaten, but it’s a brave bunch and we throw so little away. One of the best things about The Potluck really is the community it has built… AND the cheese logs. Jennye and I are super proud of it, and we’re so thrilled that Rusty wrote this up on here and we get to have conversations like this. Thank you again for bringing up an important point, and one that means a lot to us.

(if you are so inspired, here is where we are directing donations this time to help out with the awful wildfires here. )


My late grandmother did plenty of aspic dishes and the like during the '50s through the '70s, as evident in family photographs during holiday/get-together meals from the period. Per my dad, aunts and uncles however most of those recipes could stay in the past, like savory ones or the tuna-broccoli-and-lime-Jello aspic. That said, her orange creme Jello salad is still a Thanksgiving tradition, as it’s pretty good.

Most of these aspic recipes came about during wartime rationing as a way to stretch out your meat and vegetables, and I understand were fairly common, especially in the UK (or so I’m told) since meat rationing lasted into the 1950s.


Cottage cheese is Americn and safe. Ricotta cheese is foreign and unknown and during the 60s and 70s, unavailable in areas without Italian Americans.
A group of co-worker were discussing the foods of our childhoods, and one of the women said her grandmother was so upset that the suburban grocery didn’t carry the cheeses she needed so she called up to harangue him. Turned out, the cheeses she was looking for were ricotta and chunk reggiano. Never heard of them in the burbs in the 70s! Although, according to the coworker, they started carrying them within months.


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