This beauty was published in 1956 by….wait for it…Campbell Soup Company! I know it’s shocking, isn’t it? But let’s pause here for a moment and take in this link.
Okay, you back? In 1956, the Campbell Soup Company wrote in their Tricks With Soups…
"Take a tip from famous chefs. The secret of many a special dish, they say, lies in the sauces used in its preparation. But few of us these days have the time or skill to make them. And why should we bother when most of us have more than one excellent, well-seasoned “sauce” standing on our own kitchen shelves right now. Canned soups are time-saving, ready-made cooking helps that can add extra flavor to old favorites, make left-overs taste like new and can give you ideas for specialties all your own.”
And you know, I can see a lot of that, right? But then I look at the sodium content of that link I shared up there, and all those things in there that I don’t really even know what they are, and I back away a little bit. Is cream of mushroom soup the devil? No it is not. But I’m fascinated in how a product like cream of mushroom soup has become synonymous with the casserole.
If we go a little further back in time, say to this publication, published in 1942.
Published as a wartime piece, this Chicago newspaper steered readers to frugality as well as ensuring a well rounded meal with all food groups represented. It's your patriotic duty, of course.
This casserole recipe sites frugality and a well rounded meal, when eaten with a green salad. There’s no cream of mushroom soup here, just a reference to a well seasoned medium white sauce.
Ah ha. A well seasoned white sauce. What if we went to the basics of a good casserole, using what we have on hand, what's in our pantry, and made it from scratch? Would it take forever? I thought I'd find out what happens when I remade the classic tuna noodle casserole. You'll have to tune in tomorrow to find out how that went. And I didn't even use tuna....
I love this series! So many things that make me giggle and remember the way it used to be!
SO amazing! I love the can illustrations so much! Great post.
I adore casseroles and NEVER use a can of soup!
My girlfriend makes the most amazing casserole. She combines any leftover meat (or none if there is none) with whatever is ripe in the garden, chops it all up, saute's it and adds a handful of parmesean cheese and some half and half or whipping cream and bakes it in a pie shell.
Last summer we had green beans, zucchini, carrots, leeks, baby onions, tomatoes, chicken, kale, basil, potatoes and sweet pepper casserole. It is simply heaven.
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