MORE VILE MID-CENTURY FOOD PHOTOGRAPHY: WOMAN'S WEEKLY DAIRY COOKBOOK (1966)

"Foodie" culture in 2016 is ubiquitous. Everywhere you look -- on Instagram, Pinterest, Pinstagram, Instainterest, whatever -- there are beautiful photos of scrumptious-looking cuisine, making us feel awed, intrigued, hungry, and complete domestic failures for not plating such edible elegance in our own homes. The bar was not set so high when I was a youth, I might add. Sure, every so often Mom might get inspired to copy the standing rib roast from the local supper club, but in general we ate a lot of casseroles with Campbell's cream-of-something soup dumped in, and cheap ground meat concoctions. Home cooks of the mid-20th Century were encouraged to take full advantage of "time-saving" pre-packaged processed foods. Presentation of a meal, to judge now in hindsight, was designed and implemented by drunk marmosets.

This brings me to share these images from a 1966 pamphlet called, "Woman's Weekly Dairy Cookbook," offered to us by The National Dairy Council. You can see already what we're in for, with a cover dessert featuring so much whipped cream that we might assume the berries were instead layered with fire extinguisher blasts or fluffy attic insulation. How does one begin to eat that?

For the first course we seem to be encouraged to sip at some ghastly soups. To me, these look as appealing as cauldrons of witches' brew, featuring various ground-up insects, industrial chemicals, and the souls of the 2016 Republican presidential candidates. Shudder.



Oh, HELL NO. The top pot appears to be garnished with mouse fetuses and rabbit pellets, while the creation below it has all the appeal of school paste poured over maggots.


Mother of god. These are FLANS. Yes, FLANS. My stomach actually feels sick looking at these.


The bottom horror is called "Carnival Pudding," perhaps because it might remind you of the circular-motion midway ride that caused you to vomit up all the popcorn, cotton candy, and orange soda you threw down your gullet moments before.


Again with the whipped cream! Is it me, or were these made by a test chef that had no more to give? NO. MORE. TO. GIVE. A three-year-old would have more finesse.


We leave with the back cover claiming they've shown us "First Class Recipes For Good Family Living," with that godawful glop we saw before and some kid of grotesque meat tower that looks like an act of terrorism. Bon app├ętit!