1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
Many Good Recipes, Lots of Wit,
This review is from: Fashionable Food: Seven Decades of Food Fads (Paperback)
"Fashionable Food: Seven Decades of Food Fads," by Sylvia Lovegren is a fun, opinionated, eyebrow-raising history of the changing fashions in food in the United States over much of the twentieth century. Well-researched and dryly witty, it starts with the salads and "dainty" foods of the 1920s and wends its way through middle-Americanization, the influence of home economists, the passion for Chinese-ish food, wartime food rationing, postwar beefocentric barbecues, canned food cooking, international gourmet style, health food, fondue, sticky desserts, nouvelle cuisine and more, ending on the cusp of the 1990s.
Not only does the author explain the social currents that pushed food fashions this way and that, she also includes recipes, and some of them are humdingers. While most of them sound pretty good (gingerbread waffles!), she does not skimp on the awful, what-were-they-thinking recipes which swirl, misbegotten, out of fads and crazes and then are justly forgotten (lobster in pineapple boats flambe, urk). And if she warns that a recipe has not been tested, be assured it's pretty revolting (1924 "Italian" spaghetti, a mess of overcooked pasta, American cheese, and flour-thickened sauce).
To sum up: interesting social history, lots of good recipes, some dreadful recipes.