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Late Night Snacking


To busy to blog much right now, but I am pretty hungry so I figured some late night snacking is in order.

Bon appetite, 70s style!

…By request, the recipe itself:

6 medium bananas
1/4 cup lemon juice
6 thin slices boiled ham (about 1/2 lb)
3 tablespoons prepared mustard
2 envelopes (1 1/4-oz size) hollandaise sauce mix
1/4 cup light cream

1. Preheat oven to 400F. Lightly butter 2-quart, shallow baking dish.

2. Peel bananas; sprinkle each with 1/2 tablespoon lemon juice, to prevent darkening.

3. Spread ham slices with mustard. Wrap each banana in slice of ham. Arrange in single layer in casserole. Bake 10 minutes.

4. Meanwhile, make sauce: In small saucepan, combine sauce mix with 1 cup water, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, and cream. Heat, stirring, to boiling; pour over bananas. Bake 5 minutes longer, or until slightly golden. Nice with a green salad for brunch or lunch. Makes 6 servings.

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  • That… doesn’t look so good, and does remind one of what a culinary waste-land the US was for a long period. But what is slightly similar and very good is a good piece of pork (a chop, maybe, but not necessarily) that’s not too lean, with a slice of banana and good piece of cheese, perhaps gruyere, baked in the oven. If done right, it’s really very tasty.

    • Domino

      Got a link to any sort of recipe?

      • Unfortunately, no- it’s something my (now dead) mother-in-law would make sometimes. I think she figured it out from trying it at a restaurant. I will see if my wife has details. It really is nice.

    • blowback

      An Americans mock English food? We never sunk quite that low!

      • blowback

        Typo – should be ‘And’ not ‘An’.

    • DrDick

      There are many reasons why I do not miss the 7os and this (along with Disco and Prog Rock) is high on that list.

  • Is it Elvis’s birthday again?

    Alternately, can we get the recipe?

  • Brenda Johnson

    I will never eat again.

    • LOL! Right? That is horrifying. When convenience foods became widely available, Americans apparently just decided to randomly throw food together and see what worked.

      • expatchad

        Hence the Waring blender. (also used for movie editing).

  • Manju

    sometimes a banana is just a cigar

  • It’s like someone in the McCall testing kitchen lost a bet….

  • elm

    Hollandaise sauce mix? They can’t even recommend making real hollandaise?

    • Ken

      And just how many McCall’s readers could afford the $1500 kitchen appliance needed to make hollandaise?

      • DivGuy

        Are you referring to the whisk or the saucepan?

        It ain’t easy, but the problem is the technique, not the tools.

        • Mrs Tilton

          I believe that Ken is refering to MeMeMegan McArdle’s German-engineered sauce mixer/cooker, actually. But that machine is for bechamel only. (She has a second one for hollandaise on her wish-list.)

          • Ken

            Yes. Mea culpa, I confused this site with Balloon Juice, where the McKitchen is a trope.

    • DrDick

      You just do not understand, nobody cooked from scratch in the 70s.

      • Bill Murray

        too many key parties to go to

      • TribalistMeathead

        Exactly. This is an era where vegetables came from a can or from a bag in the freezer.

      • elm

        Oh, trust me, having been born in the mid-70s, I well remember my mom’s cooking. She would add ‘Sauce Arturo’ to dishes if she wanted to spice it up a bit and lipton soup mixes featured prominently. My favorite recipe was canned asparagus on top of white bread toast, topped with Cambell’s Cream of Mushroom soup.

        My mother was actually a good cook if she got her hands on a decent recipe, but she had no idea how to spice things on her own and she was trapped by the 70s cooking conventions well into the 80s.

        There’s just something about “Hollandaise sauce mix” that seems wrong. What is it? How can it resemble real Hollandaise?

    • Njorl

      If you made real hollandaises sauce, would you put it on bananas wrapped in ham?

  • Dana

    I can’t say it looks appetizing, and I won’t vouch for the hollandaise sauce, but fruit and pork isn’t much of a stretch. I mean, prosciutto and melon, right?

    • Bill Murray

      ham and pineapple

      ham and cinnamon apples

      • Manju

        steak and ketchup

        • “steak and ketchup”

          Which is an abomination.

          • blowback

            I quite disagree – mushroom ketchup goes very nicely with a fine piece of horse rump.

          • LeeEsq

            +1. The best way to cook steak is to coat it with salt, pepper and olive oil. If you need to use a sauce, Peter Luger’s steak sauce or a really good mustard.

          • expatchad

            With bananas?

      • blowback

        Except on pizza!

    • ScottRS

      Pork in nearly any form with apples, likewise.

    • Njorl

      The fruit should be tart. Even extremely green bananas wouldn’t quite go.

  • Hogan

    So what’s the endgame here? I mean, eating them is obviously out of the question. Do they insulate your pipes or something?

    • I think it’s just a reminder that we must never forget our brutal culinary past.

      • Vogon Pundit

        Those who forget the past…

        • LeeEsq

          Are doomed to eat jello with weird things stuck in it.

  • That’s the worst thing I have ever seen.

    And I read Atlas Shrugged.

    • You will repeat this statement when I put up tomorrow night’s random bit of American cultural history.

  • DocAmazing
  • herr doktor bimler

    Just look at those awesome bananas hollandaise.
    Just look at them.

    • Gus

      That’s better than eating them.

  • Desert Rat

    Dear gawd, American cuisine prior to (and into, to some extent) the 1980s really sucked.

    Funny thing is my mom actually collected these recipe cards. I remember them as a kid. She never made this one though.

    • LeeEsq

      I wonder how this happened. American cuisine had enough possitive influences and forms to be pleseant but a lot of home cooking was boring at best and revolting at worse. Even the most unadventurous Anglo-American cooks should have been able to produce realiable Anglo cuisine like roast beef. Not exiciting but tasty.

  • Joey Maloney

    Bacon Banana Cookies.

    I made a batch. I had to know.

    They were actually fucking delicious.

    • Randy

      I had to check that recipe, and I may have to make the cookies.

      I like that they specified Kosher salt.

  • BATP
  • Alan in SF

    I believe I had a heart attack just reading the recipe.

  • marijane

    dear lord, it’s bananas benedict.

    • Hanspeter

      Bananas Benedict VI

      • LeeEsq

        Would you like some toast with your ex-benedict?

  • Anonymous

    Wait, why does the hollandaise look like that pasteurized, plastic-encased shit the fucking Welsh put on their rabbits (or whatever)?

  • Mrs Tilton

    Really, Erik, you should leave this sort of thing to James Lileks.

  • Anonymous


    I am doing the Jewish equivalent of this:


  • Cody

    This looks truly awful.

    Now I know what I’m making my wife for Valentines dinner!

    • LeeEsq

      I take it you weren’t much in the mood for romance.

  • NonyNony

    In McCall’s defense, the drugs in the 70s were really, really good.

  • Barry Freed

    I’m just getting over a week and a half long bout of the flu and this IS NOT HELPING!

  • Halloween Jack

    To be eaten while wearing a banana ham-mock.

    …I’ll see myself out.

  • jake

    Do a google image search on “candle salad”. Same genre of horrifying postwar era american magazine food involving bananas, but more phallic.

    • JoyfulA

      I used to make candle salad for the family dinner when I was 7 or 8.

  • I think they were just punking people with recipes back then. “Hey, let’s see if we can people to eat this shit!”

    • DrDick

      My sister in Oklahoma still does.

      • I don’t believe you, DrDick. Nobody cooks like that anymore, do they?!!!!

        • DrDick

          Sadly, my sister does (bear in mind that she is in her mid-50s). You know all those awful recipes in small town newspapers? Those are her staple.

          • expatchad

            You mean “Standard Okie Cuisine” Offered at NCED in Norman? (But you have to go postal to go to nced)

            • DrDick

              Pretty much. My sister is pretty much a Standard Okie.

              • expatchad

                You escaped?

  • Left_Wing_Fox

    You’re treading int James Lilek’s territory here.

    Which is fine.. The Gallery of Regrettable Food is one of the few truely bipartisan things I’ve ever seen from a republican columnist.


  • Bloix

    That style of cooking was on its way out in the ’70’s.
    This is what was happening in the ’70’s:


  • DN

    In the interest of science, I just took a fine slice of prosciutto de parma and wrapped it around a big hunk of banana. It actually tastes pretty darned good. I am a bit fearful of trying it with a Hollandaise so some other brave person can do that.

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