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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

The Bestest Buffets In One Book

Who does not have a love/hate relationship with a buffets? Some are pretty good. Sometimes quantity trumps quality and you are left hating yourself for the next three days as you sit on your toilet in a cold sweat. There are feeding troughs and countless Chinese buffets that always seem to serve the same food and have the same person with a real long pinky nail handling the food. Take as much as you want but eat what you take, right? 

I can't say I have been to many home buffets that did not include a potluck. After looking through this book, I can say I am one of the fortunate souls. I'm not a Culinary Specialist in the US Navy. I lack the ability to produce enough food to feed a frigate crew. I also lack the desire to do so. 

I only have a few more Better Homes and Gardens books left. For now anyway. 

Better Homes and Gardens Best Buffets, 1963
One of many not-so-user friendly buffet ideas. Usually when one experiences a buffet, it's in some sort of line. Plates, silverware, vegetables, main course, proteins, fruit, drinks, maybe napkins and seasonings. This is a hot mess with a lot of cross contamination. Who wants to get that maggoty rice on the lapel of their leisure suit while reaching for a crescent roll?

Even the nasally WASP crowd enjoys a good frank and burger. I didn't mean that in a good way because they wouldn't just eat a plain frank. Unless it was a "haute dog" or something.

High style dining with meatballs and french cream! Oh I am fanning my face in anticipation! I daresay I feel the vapors coming over me. Sophisticated meatballs made with ground beef, green olives, butter, and flour with a sauce made of Worcestershire sauce, half and half, onion juice (?), and a few other herbs and spices. Well, I never...
Country Club Hamburgers. If they didn't have that fancy mushroom cap and fluffy toothpick to make them look high class, then they would just be hamburgers in an odd blend of peas and onions.
In 2012, the word "gay" has an entirely different meaning.
This one is almost being done right. Again, cross contamination. I personally wouldn't want someone's Brylcreem hands near my food. Since I have delegated myself the buffet expert, I would have forgone the "natty napkins" or put them at the end of the line. Same with the plates. Not saying I would want to partake in a home buffet. I think my husband has a hutch that turns into a buffet. I need to ask him to get rid of it.

Hamburger Pie. Fast, good. Perhaps fast. Good is subjective. This wonderful mess is ground beef, green beans, tomato soup with sliced tomatoes and mashed potatoes served atop. I'll say it was probably fast to make, but will continue to question if this is "good" or not.

What we have here is a Traditional New England Supper! I'm most impressed with the sign in the potted plant that gives the guest an idea where they should start first. That's the only reason I can see for it being there. It would make an odd decoration. I guess everybody needs direction. 
Thanksgiving Dinner with all the trimmings. Meh. Effective November 25, 2010, I started to hate Thanksgiving. I can say that if this was the last Thanksgiving I enjoyed before my life changed forever, it would make the situation worse.
When I think back to the Christmases of my youth and the family meals we had to endure there is one thing that sticks out the most in my mind. That particular color of red. Sure the trees were handcrafted and used for years, maybe ended up in a thrift store somewhere. I think I'm going to have to look around next time I make a book run. If I find one, I am posting a picture!

Dessert time!! If a set of arms with no body attached to them presents you scoops of ice cream and tells you they are "trees", you better just smile and nod while grabbing your dish.
Lemonade Angel Dessert. The hue of this and the consistency looks like some sort of creepy scrambled egg mold. Maybe lay off the yellow food coloring? Less Goldenrod? Eyes are the first part of the digestive process. Just saying...

Potlucks! Everybody bring something and hope it gets eaten. In this case, it doesn't look like there's going to be much eating. I would hate to be the person who brought the Cranberry Relish Mold. People are going to swamp her for the recipe.
Say what you want about this genial fellow. If he can succesfully arrange deviled meat bones while wearing a Mr. Rogers sweater and a pleasant smile on his face, he's the kind of guy you want to have around for events like this.

I have covered the bestest buffets in one book. Can I do better? Hell no!!



  1. My dad absolutely loved things like the cranberry relish mold. My mom would bring them to things and then complain that only my dad and her took some.

    1. That would happen to me. I usually bring plates or plastic utensils.

  2. Really Great post with nice information. Thanks for this.

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