Chicken Pistachio Pasta Salad (California, 2006, adapted)

Chicken Pistachio Pasta Salad is a hearty entrée salad perfect for a warm summer evening.   This recipe comes to me by way of a community cookbook from the Mother Teresa Maternity Home in Placerville, CA, which serves as both a women’s shelter and a temporary home for pregnant women.   Unlike most community cookbooks, this one……

Chicken Cutlets with a Swiss Cheese Crust (Nebraska, 1987, adapted)

Chicken Cutlets with a Swiss Cheese Crust is a tasty fried chicken dish suitable for weeknight cooking.   The whole chicken and cheese thing isn’t normally appealing to me, but I had been craving fried chicken like crazy when I came across this recipe.  I was also looking for an opportunity to use my new meat……

40 Carrots (Nebraska, 1987, adapted)

I’m a little bit embarrassed to publish this.  40 Carrots isn’t much of a recipe, and the end result isn’t really worth eating.  Spoiler alert:  it’s cooked carrots and Cheez Whiz.   It tastes exactly like you’d imagine.  My kids weren’t impressed.  I won’t be making this one again. Why did I choose to make it……

Mexi-Casserole (Nebraska, 1987, adapted)

Mexi-Casserole is a quick and dirty weeknight casserole with Mexican-American flavors and a flaky biscuit crust.  In many ways it fits the archetype of post-war convenience food:   ground meat, mixed canned goods, and a Bisquick topping.  If you can brown hamburger you can make Mexi-Casserole.  At the center of the dish is a packet of……

Instant Pot Russian Chicken (Oregon, 2008, adapted)

Instant Pot Russian Chicken is a recipe that hits close to home.  Quite literally.  Adapted from Recipes from the Heart, a community cookbook from my home congregation and submitted by a family I know and live, Instant Pot Russian Chicken is a homey, sweet, and simple weeknight dish for the harried homemaker.  It reflects a……

Funeral Potatoes (California, 1997, adapted)

Funeral potatoes are an almost meme-worthy dish these days, one of the few mid-century canned-soup-and-cream casseroles that’s still aligned with the twenty-first century palate.  I’ve never been to a funeral with refreshments, much less a full meal.  The dreary name presumably stems from a custom of serving them at a post-service family meal, or perhaps……

Lamb Conquistador (adapted from the Smart Shopper’s Cookbook, 1972)

Lamb Conquistador is an easy weeknight chili-with-beans from Smart Shopper’s Cookbook (1972) by former Betty Crocker executive Loyta Wooding.   Like many recipes in Smart Shopper’s Cookbook it treats lamb shoulder and lamb chops as a budget friendly item – a cost-friendly alternative to beef.  This may have been true in the 1970s but it’s hardly……

Best Baked Salmon (adapted from Sunset Cook Book, 1949)

I’m gonna be up front with you:  this is not the best way to bake salmon, title be damned.  I’ve spent the last few decades in the Pacific Northwest and am a firm believer in “less is more” when it comes to cooking salmon.  Salt and pepper and EVOO and throw it on the grill. ……