Recipies from 1959

Joined Feb 6, 2002
I'm catering a party with a theme of 1959.

Is there a site that lists recipes from that year?
Joined Jul 3, 2002
Weird but interesting idea. Why 1959? Somebody's birth year?
Anyway, you might have to go to a library that has old copies of magazines like Gourmet or look for cookbooks published in that year. Here's one I found:

Also, The James Beard Cookbook was published in 1960, so the recipes in the book--as long as you are looking at that edition--would probably reflect 1959.

For really authentic 1959 cooking, you could look for community cookbooks from 1959. A good used bookstore will usually have a bunch of them, but you'll need some luck to happen on one for that exact year. ;)

Good luck! And please let us know what your menu turns out to be. :)
Joined Dec 5, 2004
For some years our house had a 1953 O'Keefe & Merrit stove (griddle in the middle, seprate oven and broiler compartments, complete with "Grill-evator" multi-position grill height adjuster). Incredibly, all of the original documentation - warranty, user's manual, and a COOKBOOK! - were all in their original envelope. One of my favorite recipes from the cookbook is SO RETRO it's a riot, and that's the recipe for tamale pie (by the way, the correct singular form of "tamales" is "tamal", not "tamale").

I don't have the stove or the cookbook anymore, but I did some searching around and found a recipe very close to what I remember was in the O'keefe & Merrit book. This is obviouosly a household-style recipe, so you'll need to extrapolate out your quantities. Here it is:

Tamale pie:

1 Heaping cup yellow corn meal
1 Cup cold water
3 Cups boiling water
1 Teaspoon crushed garlic
1 Pound of ground meat (preferably beef)
1 Medium onion chopped
1 Can whole kernel corn #2
1 Can ripe olives, whole black olives
1 Teaspoon chili powder, or more to taste
1 Teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
2 Cans Tomato sauce

Mix 1 heaping cup yellow corn meal and 1 cup cold water, add 3 cups boiling water and 1 teaspoon garlic and bring to a boil.

Brown 1pound ground meat, 1 medium chopped onion, salt and pepper, 1 can whole kernel corn #2, 1 can olives, 1 teaspoon chili powder or more, 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce, 2 cans tomato sauce.

Add corn meal mixture and cook on low 15 minutes. Turn into 2 qt. casserole and put shredded cheese on top and bake at 400 about 20 minutes.
Joined Aug 29, 2000
Unfortunately, you'll want recipes that use a lot of manufactured foods as ingredients: jelly, spam, "frankfurters", gelatin, canned soup, etc. Also they may make use of some equipment such as the chafing dish.

You'll get the picture here.

Good luck!


Staff member
Joined Oct 7, 2001
I think I just scared myself looking at some of those pictures!!!
Joined Jul 3, 2002
I thought the "Meat! Meat! Meat!" one was pretty bad, but I think the "More Knudsen's" one is really the scariest. :eek: And now I REALLY want to make a dinner party from it. (especially for my lactose intolerant friends :rolleyes: ) :D

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