Object of the month: Folder with food recipes

Monthly Artifacts
Folder with food recipes.

I belive many households have inherited a collection of food recipes like this. Before the age of internet and food blogs, weekly magazines were an important source of inspiration in the kitchen. Readers carefully cut out appetising recipes with colour photos and created their own cook book. These personal collections not only tell us about the owners' tastes and preferences, but also about the food culture of the era. Most of the recipes in this book are from the weekly magazine Norsk Ukeblad in the 1970s, and are representative of a time when Norway opened up to influences from other countries. Much of what we regard as quite normal today found its way into the typical Norwegian kitchen in the 70s, such as everyone's favourite - pizza. One of the cuttings starts off like this:

"Saturday evening and we'll be serving the latest in food. When everyone else is serving and talking about pizza, we can't just sit on the sidelines. It's ages since we served up something that's "in" for a cosy evening. And what could be more "in" than a pizza with a topping of sardines in tomato sauce, leeks and mussels?"

It was all about making a variety of dishes using ingredients that were available. Fish balls don't just have to be served with boring white sauce and potatoes, we learn from this book. It can be presented in numerous ways such as fish ball salad, fried fish balls with bacon, fish ball soup with mussels, fish ball mornay, fish balls in herb sauce. And fish balls in a pot. And who could have known that there are so many ways of serving cutlets? Cutlet Italiano, Hawaiian cutlet, Chinese cutlet, cutlet à la Oscar, cheese cutlet, Schnitzel cutlet, Hungarian cutlet, Mexican cutlet. The list never ends!

These everyday collections of recipes are an important part of our history. Unfortunately not many of them are preserved in museum collections. On the website Digitaltmuseum.no, 170 hits pop up for "cookery book" and 199 for "food recipes," and most of them are printed cookery books. We are very happy to have this personal collection in our museum. On our Digital Museum web page you can scroll through the folder yourself, or come here to the museum and look through the recipes here. Perhaps it is time for a retro-evening at your dinner table?


Anne Klippenvåg Pettersen - curator