Thinking about making a cake for your sweetie for Valentine's Day? Here's a new product (well, new circa 1949) that might make that task simpler:
Recently, the fearless chef over at Retro Recipe Attempts tried to make cupcakes in actual coffee cups from a vintage recipe, with questionable results...so I suppose Swan's Down Instant Cake Mix was a big improvement over baking from scratch for some folks.
What interests me is that the mix seems to only come in one flavor; the back of this brochure explains how you can doctor it to make chocolate cake, spice cake, lemon cake, and so forth. Hard to imagine, now that you can buy cake mixes in every imaginable flavor (and some unimaginable, like confetti). But given Retrochef's experience, even a basic box mix might have saved many a baker.
As might have this product, which appears to be liquid Crisco. Mmmmm!
Is it just me, or does this look exactly like a 1970s Wacky Pack? (And speaking of Wacky Packs, did you know that Art Speigelman was one of the original artists who created them?) The parody version of this would, of course, have to be called "Hurl." As for the text at the bottom: "The first and only CHUNKY GREEN SHORTENING that you HURL!"
If you're planning a full-on party, but don't want to work too hard in the kitchen, I have just the solution for you. Or rather, Martha Logan, chief Home Economist for Swift does:
The introduction speaks for itself (click on the picture to enlarge). Poor Martha--hopelessly trying to sound hip while urging young hostesses that their parties must lead to Fun for Everybody™. Just because you're chief Home Economist for Swift doesn't mean you get all the plum assignments.
There are hot-dog themed party ideas for every conceivable occasion in this 24-page beauty, but most appropos for our purposes is the "Valentine Dance," with its "Franks in Hearts-and-Arrows" sandwiches and clever games:
And of course, there's always room for Jell-O.
Happy Valentine's Day, everyone, and as Martha Logan says, "Don't spare the eatables!"