Forgotten Flavors: 8 Retro Foods That Are Due A Comeback

Forgotten Flavors: 8 Retro Foods That Are Due A Comeback

As I was sitting down an eating a cold turkey sandwich with stuffing and mashed potatoes over the holiday weekend I started thinking about food fads and how they come and go. Take Thanksgiving, for example, that's been around since America became a country. What makes all those foods (turkey, mashed potatoes, stuffing, etc) stick around and not others? Food fads come and go. While some deserve to stay in the past (such as spam, banana fritters, and tripe cake), others are overdue a comeback.

Being in the midst of baking season it might be fun to bring some original classic recipes to impress your friends with!

Forgotten Flavors: 8 Retro Foods That Are Due A Comeback
Image by Gerry W.


Duck a l’Orange



Back in the 60s and 70s, if you wanted to show your friends how cultured you were, cooking up a French dish like duck a l’orange was certain to do it. However, what began as a classy concoction to impress VIP dinner guests swiftly turned into something tacky and overdone until by the ‘00s Gordon Ramsay had given it the kiss of death when he declared that it was ‘the culinary equivalent of flared trousers’.


Given that it’s largely disappeared from menus, duck a l’orange has gained its novelty back – most of us millennials have never even tried this combination. The magic is all in the sauce, which can be overpoweringly sweet if made incorrectly. There are plenty of recipes on how to prepare duck a l’orange online that have given it a modern touch.

Forgotten Flavors: 8 Retro Foods That Are Due A Comeback
Photo by Brian C.


Sardine sandwiches

Most people nowadays have never tried tinned sardines – let alone sardine sandwiches. However, this used to be the tuna mayo of its day.


While they may not look (or sound) appetizing, sardine sandwiches are actually quite tasty. Use focaccia bread and cream cheese to even out the saltiness of the tiny fishies. You can then add the sardines – onions and capers make a nice addition. You can also try this Malaysian take on sardine sandwiches as detailed at Roti N Rice.


This sandwich isn’t just tasty, but it can also be very healthy, helping you to get your omega-3 fix for the day.

Forgotten Flavors: 8 Retro Foods That Are Due A Comeback
Photo by Michael U.

Baked Alaska

Baked Alaska has fallen out of flavour, largely because it’s a little complicated to prepare. It’s basically sponge cake topped with ice cream and then encased with meringue. Not what you were thinking right?

Traditionally, it was baked and then flambeed at the table. You’ll still find it one some menus, but for the most part, it’s a dessert that has faded into obscurity.

If you’re looking for a baking challenge, Baked Alaska could be a project worth taking on. The hardest part is mastering the meringue, which involve whipping up egg whites and sugar and then casting it into iceberg shape. You’ll find plenty of recipes for this nostalgic dessert online.

Forgotten Flavors: 8 Retro Foods That Are Due A Comeback
Image By Linda S.

Meatloaf

The musician Meatloaf derived his name from this dish – it’s hard to say which one is now more retro. Meatloaf was once a picnic classic and it involved shaping mincemeat into a loaf and then cutting it into slices.

Many people have reinvented meatloaf over the years by adding bacon or cheese, but in its pure form, it's simply pork mixed with prosciutto. Café Delites has a great meatloaf recipe worth trying.

Forgotten Flavors: 8 Retro Foods That Are Due A Comeback
Image By Luke B.

Prawn cocktail

This classic British hors-d'oeuvre was served in every restaurant in the 70s. Since then it’s fallen in and out of fashion repeatedly. Nowadays, you’ll still find it served in many restaurants, although it’s often served with a certain degree of irony. Could it be time for a more serious revival?

A prawn cocktail is one of the easiest dishes on this list to recreate. The sauce is a simple mixture of mayonnaise, ketchup and a couple shakes of tobacco. It’s pretty much served on ice, in a cocktail glass with precooked prawns hanging over the sides.

Many chefs have taken their own spin on prawn cocktail over the years. Heston Blumenthal’s recipe stays pretty close to the blueprint (which is unusual for Heston) and is a good recipe to try.


Turtle soup


Disclaimer: No turtles were harmed in the making of this blog post, or with this recipe. You won’t find turtle soup on many menus largely because the turtle has since become endangered and as a result, many jurisdictions have made this dish illegal. Only a few restaurants still serve turtle soup in its original form.

Fortunately, you can still make this dish at home without harming any turtles in the form of mock turtle soup. Use stewing beef or alligator meat instead to recreate the consistency. This soup is often prepared with onions, carrots and celery stalks as well as a touch of red wine or sherry.

Forgotten Flavors: 8 Retro Foods That Are Due A Comeback
Image By Dana S.

Mexican Fried Ice Cream

Fast food restaurant Chi Chis used to serve a signature dish called Mexican fried ice cream. The restaurant chain went defunct in 2004 (for a little blast to the past on defunct restaurants, you can read more here), so you can no longer taste this classic. Other restaurants have attempted to create imitations since, but they’re not quite the same.

Given that recipes were closely guarded at Chi Chis, it’s also very difficult to find a recipe for this dish online, however, there are some close examples to be found on the web such as this one. You’re best using Maraschino cherries. Yummy!

Forgotten Flavors: 8 Retro Foods That Are Due A Comeback
Image By Lynn W.

Pineapple upside down cake


Pineapple upside down cake was invented in the 1920s when machinery was first built to cut pineapples easily into slices, a revolution of their time. The dessert soon grew in popularity and became a staple dessert. Only in the last couple of decades has it become largely forgotten about. I guess it's finally lost its exotic feel.

Pineapple upside down cake derives its name from the fact that it’s baked upside down with the toppings facing the bottom of the pan. It’s then flipped over when served so that the pineapple ring then sits on the top embedded into the cake. There are lots of ways to add to this dish such as adding cherries, cinnamon, and syrup. Brown sugar sprinkled over the top can also create a glazed texture.

Were in the midst of the baking season so why not drum up one of these lost found recipes and really impress your friends!






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Forgotten Flavors: 8 Retro Foods That Are Due A Comeback


1 comment

  1. Thanks for sharing these wonderful recipe's. I think I'm inspired to bring back the Baked Alaska, or maybe give the fried ice cream a shot. They are all very good recipes.

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