Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Pleased to Meat you!

When you were growing up, were dinners in your house "meat and potatoes" affairs?  Did you have a family member (probably your dad) who preferred this set-up?

I may be amalgamating, but it seems to me that this is how dinner in the United States (and probably Canada) has been portrayed in the last 60 years or so.  Maybe it's because during WWII, meat was rationed and therefore a luxury.  Maybe our (still mainly) agri-based economy of the mid-century perpetuated this idea.  I'm sure there were lots of factors to consider but for whatever reason, meat was "what's for dinner".

Not so much anymore!  Oh, I'm sure there is still that percentage of the population (mainly older folks) who insist on this type of meal, but even for some younger Boomers and those of us younger, I think this is an antiquated notion of what dinner should be.  I know in our own household chicken is the meat of choice, but that's only once every 10 days or so.  Most nights, without trying, we have meatless dinners.  We're not vegetarian, but I'm quite frugal when it comes to my food prep and meatless is oftentimes cheaper.  Brian's not a big fan of red meat, so this makes my job much easier.

Oh, but I do love these throwback charts showing the different cuts of meat!  I got this one from my friend Kim at her shop, Persimmons.  I love everything about it - that flat red color, the font, the mid-century look to it - it's just perfect.  I would love to do a HUGE piece and include this somehow.  Even though it's not in pristine shape, it's a gem in my collection.

Here's a 1951 booklet on how to stretch your food budget put out by the good folks at Frigidaire.  There's the beef chart, of course, but there are also veal, pork and lamb charts as well.  And how novel it must've been to have your own FREEZER!  We forget that this is a fairly new feature, but it explains why my dad, who was born in 1920, was always so taken with them.  He remembered the Ice Man!

I also love making meat-related collages.  There's something so very fun about them, and that red color can't be beat.

P.S.  My latest "Detritus Project" post is up on the Library as Incubator Project Web site today!  :D


  1. Reminds me of David Letterman and his Guess the Meat (name?) contests. Thanks, Mel!

    1. Annie, I thought of David Letterman many times while penning this post! Remember "Big-Ass" Ham? :D