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Sunday, May 27, 2012

The Boo-fay, buff-it, buffet.

Who does not remember attending a party with a buffet theme? Clutching your Chinet plate and plastic utensils in anticipation of the feeding trough ahead? Shifting your weight impatiently as the feller in the leisure suit meticulously spoons macaroni salad onto his already piled plate. 

It's your turn at the boo-fay. Choose wisely. Don't take more than you can eat and don't eat more than you can take.

First I want to give a shout out to Mrs. Virginia Kuhnert of Holiday, FL. Despite buying this book several states away, she was kind enough to put her address label in the book. 

One of the best parts of finding these old cookbooks is the underlines, personalization, rare newspaper clippings that were stuffed in the pages, undiscovered until 32 years later. 

I pulled this out and unfolded it to scan the date. I hope by doing that I did not cause a wrinkle in time. 
Better Homes and Gardens Best Buffets Cookbook, 1974. I was a fetus or a newborn most of that year so I was late for the party
Salmon-Crab Veronique in a chafing dish. Guests can spoon the luscious mixture over patty shells. Their words, not mine. Looking at the size of the spoon and the size of the holes in the patty shells, I foresee a big mess on the table. Plus a lot of veronique invading the space of the other delicacies to come. I can't have veronique invading my aspic.
Well this setup is quite the conundrum. My bet is that the Golden Coffee cake goes uneaten because nobody wants to be the first to lift the cover and if they do, they face getting burned by the hot plate with little hams a'sizzling. The Scrambled Eggs deluxe in its hot green pan presents a risk too. The fruit is a mere decoration so don't touch!
While the guests pondered over how to reach the Golden Coffee Cake or the best way to get the salmon-crab veronique onto the patty shells, nobody noticed the wobbling cabbage in the background. Mildred Pierce was standing by and dropped her plate in horror as the cabbage split forth in front of her, spewing a steaming, hissy mess of what it had been fed. The hostess of this boo-fay spent months trying to get salmon-crab veronique out of her shag carpet.
Nothing out of the ordinary. I'm just reflecting that rolled ham was at every party. It still is. I can't speak for the furry grapes.
Roll out the red carpet because serving Beef Fillets Wellington with its noble companion, Golden Tarragon Sauce will make your guests feel like royalty. They must not get out much if this is what it takes to make them feel like royalty. Morale is good for these sheltered folks.
Priscilla followed Bruce, clutching the heavy picnic basket. Bruce was holding a lumpy bag. Her heart beat in anticipation as he found THE SPOT. She knew that he had a ring for her. She KNEW it. Her spirits fell as he opened the basket, permeating the air with ketchup, onions, ground beef. Inside were three meatloaves. He presented a platter of an already sliced and topped with ketchup meatloaf. Priscilla looked at the frozen french fry salad and sad olives and wished she had marked the trail so she could make a fast exit.
Alright, if my "favorite armchair quarterback" wants to call the plays in the kitchen, he can bake his own damn pot pie. Note to Peyton Manning in the Lazy Boy: Celery Leaves make a bad garnish. That's what you get for trying to coach yourself through the recipe.
Hopefully this host is having a no children allowed party or understanding parents. Granted vegetables are the last thing they will reach for, but wouldn't it make sense to have the skewered shish kebobs on a hot electric grill out of the reach of children? Maybe the plates can be lowered so people aren't reaching over the food right away? And what is going on with that cheap plastic bookcase? Then again, this is the 1970s where kids fought over who was going to sit on the hump in the family Buick. Safety schmafety. 
This picture is a sad metaphor to the tater tot casserole slowly pushing the molded cucumber grape salad out of the way. Sigh..
Here's to a happy Sunday and that the graceful hostess finally managed to get the Salmon-Crab Veronique out of her shag carpet. The moral of this story is to beware the pregnant cabbages! 

Until next time!!

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