Healthy Luncheon Menus
( Originally Published 1954 )
Americans have a typical luncheon habit. The busy homemaker grabs a sandwich, or some leftovers from the meal of the night before, and a cup of coffee. Children likewise are fed small mealsówe mean children who are busy, children of school age. The pre-school child is victimized by diets which are often excessive in amount and bad in composition. Luncheons for children of pre-school age and school age should, like breakfast, consist of two or three courses only.
Lunches with a Basic Main Course of Pastry
Any kind of pie or cake with raw fruit and a beverage, such as lemonade, mint tea or cereal beverage with cream, will sustain the busy adult for several hours. Children may drink all the milk they can enjoy as a first luncheon course, following this with pie or cake (see recipes) and raw fruit.
A pie can be baked on one layer of crust made out of either flour, water and shortening (the shortening may be oil or butter or sour cream) or out of cornflakes or other dry cereal packed into a pie-pan. The flour crust should be baked about fifteen minutes in a moderate oven before the fruit is added. The fruit should be cooked a few minutes before putting it in the pie shell.
Protein Salad for Luncheon
An especially nice luncheon that requires no cooking is the protein salad (see recipes). Such a salad would prevent the feeling of "hidden hunger" in both young and old. A seven- or eight-year-old child, as well as his parents, can consume a large salad, if he eats little else at the same meal, without getting a "bellyache." Raw salad is reduced in quantity when it is properly chewed.
Lettuce consists over 90 per cent of water. The same is true of the other greens. There would be no abnormal thirst or desire for cold water or other beverages if a fresh green salad were the main course of a luncheon. No bread or other starchy food should be eaten with a salad that is made with cheese or egg. A dessert of fresh raw fruit or berries combines well with a protein salad.
A Starchy Luncheon with Salad
A raw vegetable salad, consisting of one or two grated carrots, a quarter or a sixth of a head of lettuce, celery, cucumber and a little sour cream or oil dressing, may be eaten with bread and butter. Avocado is a nice addition to such a salad. It may be used instead of butter by strict vegetarians who do not include any butter or other dairy products in their diets.
Salad Dressing, Such as Mayonnaise, etc.
Commercial preparations are not always wholesome. A home-made dressing of wholesome ingredients improves the taste of salad. In the chapter on recipes will be found a salad dressing and health mayonnaise which should please the most exacting palate.
How to Prepare Raw Salads
Salad luncheons are easy to prepare. Recipes are hardly needed for any of them.
Lettuce should not be soaked in water very long. A head of lettuce should be washed. Inedible portions should be trimmed off. It should be put in a clean bowl in the refrigerator for a half hour before cutting it for serving.
Carrots for a salad should be scraped clean before grating or shredding them.
Appetizing food must give the impression that it is prepared so cleanly that it will look like a beautiful picture on the serving plate. Radish and green salad material should likewise not be soaked in water. Clean them, wash them, rinse them, and place in a bowl to be chilled for a while before serving.
An appetizing salad need not be arranged in any special manner. Toss your vegetables in the center of the plate, leaving at least an inch and one-half border, like the frame of a picture. Never put a salad all over the plate. It looks more decorative and palatable when it is a high, fluffy and fresh-looking in the center of the plate. A wide border all around the salad plate enhances the appearance of a salad.
In the winter, a hot dish for luncheon is energizing. A soup or vegetable stew can be easily prepared.
The starchy soupsódried peas or beans, lentils, barley, chickpeas, or potatoes (see recipes)-combine well with other starchy food. A meal composed of a starchy soup, Rye-Krisp, whole-wheat crackers or bread and butter, and raw fruit for dessert would be an easy one to prepare for luncheon for any-size family.
Non-starchy soupsóthe thin and tart soups such as tomato soup and beet soup (see recipes) ócombine well with protein luncheons. Such a luncheon soup would mix well with a protein such as cheese, or eggs on salad, raw fruit or berries for dessert. Strict vegetarians may eat such a soup with nuts and fruit or with a salad.
Vegetable Stews as Luncheon Main Courses
Any three or four vegetables that you may have in your pantry bin can make a stew if you blend the vegetables just right and if you don't cook them to excess.
A stew of potatoes, carrots, celery, and peas blend well. Cut potato up into any-size chunks desired. Carrots may be grated or quartered or sliced. Celery and onion are best when cut fine. Cook until well done in just enough water to allow for boiling without making the mixture too watery. A glass of water will stew three times the amount of vegetables if you use a low flame after the vegetables start boiling. Always use a lidded pot. Add the peas after the other vegetables are done. Use either fresh or frozen peas. The steam from the pre-cooked vegetables will cook the peas without spoiling their color or flavor. Season, before serving or at the table, with a little salt and butter.
Another delicious vegetable stew is a mixture of string beans, carrots and cauliflower. Cook the string beans and carrots about ten or twelve minutes, add cauliflower and cook another eight minutes. Cauliflower will turn brown and spoil in flavor if it is cooked more than eight to ten minutes.
Any housewife can make delightful vegetable stews by using ingenuity and common sense. If it is necessary to avoid expensive vegetables, it can readily be done if you have an adequate idea of correct food combinations. Our food combinations are planned in such a manner as to give the homemaker and other food craftsmen ample suggestions for using the foods that are abundant in the market and comparatively reasonable in price.
The Food Liquefier
The food liquefier is an indispensible kitchen aid. It is especially good for special luncheons and for people requiring a smooth diet.
Vegetables require only slight cooking, thus retaining their flavors and vitamins. Dilute with cold water or milk to desired consistency and liquefy in the food blender. This way of preparing smooth food mixtures is far superior to the old-fashioned method of straining vegetables through a sieve or colander. The latter method involves overcooking. When we use the electric blender to liquefy vegetables, they can be undercooked, and this prevents their vitamins and minerals from being destroyed.
Many food courses, vegetable dishes and desserts can be prepared easily with the food liquefier. It is a true labor-saving machine.
Vitamins in Cooked Foods
Every food that grows, every vegetable and fruit, contains the vitamins that are known to science. Vitamin, A, C and D are destroyed by heat. For this reason, I recommend the use of raw salads or raw fruits as basic courses of each meal. This would ensure the body an adequate supply of the thermolabile vitamins.
The other class of vitamins are those that comprise the "B-complex" group. They are heat-resistant. Therefore, when you eat a stew or a soup or any cooked vegetables, you will still get the "B-complex" vitamins that they may contain.
Anyone who requires a smooth diet can take one or two cups of liquefied soup or stew for luncheon, together with one other food that helps to balance the meal. The individual will always do well to be guided by natural or instinctive appetite for food. Instinct is a pretty good guide to eating. Do not ignore it. When you have no desire for a meal, omit it.
What about baked macaroni, noodles, spaghetti, etc.? These dishes are very hearty. They make excellent casseroles. They can be baked together with any green vegetables, as you will note in the chapter on recipes. We do not believe in bulky macaroni or spaghetti portions. Use about four ounces of the dry product for six portions. Cook it soft, in just enough water not to make a "swimming" mixture. These starchy foods should be cooked in the same way as any cereal. They will thus be much easier to digest than when they are cooked hard and dry, in the way macaroni and spaghetti varieties are usually cooked.
A very nice casserole can be made with cubed or grated nut-meat, about one to two ounces per portion, mixed together with some pre-cooked vegetables, with or without eggs.
Another hearty luncheon dish is well-cooked brown or wild rice, buckwheat or millet. The buckwheat should be toasted in the oven or on the top of the stove over a low flame until it is very dry before boiling water is added to it. One cup of buckwheat or rice will take about four to five cups of boiling water. When the buckwheat is not well toasted before cooking, it tastes soggy and is not as palatable as it should be.
Brown rice may also be toasted before mixing it with boiling water. It is delicious when mixed with peas. The peas should, of course, be cooked separately for a few minutes before serving. As a seasoning for the rice, use sweet cream or butter and a little celery salt. Strict vegetarians who do not use butter may take soy-bean "milk" or a little oil or margarine on the rice.
No sweetening such as sugar, honey or maple syrup should be taken with any starchy food. Starch should be masticated by itself. It should be eaten on the mono-diet principle, for best digestive and nutritional results. The mono-diet principle is really applied to our method of food combinations. While a few varieties are recommended at each meal, menus are planned so as not to overstuff the system. Only one hearty food is recommended at each meal.
SAMPLE SUMMER AND WINTER MENUS
Recipes for items marked by asterisk are included in this book
1. Milk, apple pie, whipped cream, peaches or any other raw fruit.
2. Custard pineapple pie, whipped cream, fruit salad on lettuce (fresh pineapple, strawberries, sliced orange).
3. Whole-wheat sweet muffins, salad on lettuce (celery, apple), with orange-juice dressing.
4. Milk, ice cream, peaches, apricots, or any other raw fruit in season. Any kind of cake or pie combines well with raw salad and fruits and a watery beverage. A small portion of light cake may be taken occasionally with ice cream and fruit luncheon.
5. Honeydew melon, grapes.
6. Watermelon (size of portion depends on how well the individual can digest), lettuce, oranges, or other juicy fruit.
7. Buttermilk or home-made clabber milk, strawberries (or other berries in season) with cream.
8. Cottage cheese, sour cream, lettuce, tomato, radishes, etc.
9. Hard-boiled egg yolks mixed with celery on lettuce and tomato.
Stew any fresh fruit such as cherries and apples or pears. Chill and
sweeten to taste with honey. Cold fruit soup with whipped cream.
10. A handful of nuts, fruit in season, cold lemonade, milk or butter-
11. Cold vegetable soup such as spinach, sorrel (schav), or beet; cottage or farmer cheese, sour cream, raw fruits or berries.
12. Cold fruit soup (of mixed fruits and berries), fruit and nut salad.
1. Hot vegetable soup. Any one starch such as toast, Rye-Krisp,
baked potatoes, or cooked cereal such as rice, millet, or buck-
wheat. A simple gravy may be used as a seasoning for the starch.
2. Barley-vegetable soup, Rye-Krisp, sweet apple or pear.
3. Lima bean vegetable soup, grated carrots on lettuce.
4. Baked sweet potatoes, butter, cooked string beans, carrots, an, raw fruit in season.
5. Eggplant-tomato stew any fruit salad, nuts, beverage, cookie!
6. Stewed nuttose or protose balls, fruit salad.
7. From a glass to a pint of warm milk, apple, pear.
8. Pint milk (half water, half milk), sweet dry fruits such as date or figs; raw fruit such as apples or oranges.
9. Mixed fruits and nuts with sweet cream (raisins, dates, figs, nuts cut fine); buttermilk, hot lemonade.
10. Vegetable stew consisting of potato, carrot, celery, onion, green peas cooked together. One may eat as much as desired. Fruit salad on lettuce.
1. Non-starchy vegetable soup; cabbage, celery, and carrot slaw; Swiss cheese on rye or whole-wheat buttered bread (any other cheese may be substituted).
2. Cream cheese on whole-wheat buttered toast; carrots, pears; apple.
3. Cream of celery soup; lettuce sandwich with nut butter on whole-wheat bread; pear.
4. Medium- or hard-boiled egg yolk (or entire egg) with mayonnaise on whole-wheat toasted buttered bread; celery, lettuce, turnip salad; spinach, string beans.
5. Ground raisins mixed with grated carrots on toasted rye or whole-
wheat bread, any vegetable or fruit salad, cereal beverage.
6. Creamed cottage cheese and chopped raisins on Rye-Krisp or any
brown bread. Cereal beverage, cream, fruit salad.
7. Sliced broiled eggplant, any brown bread, vegetable soup, raw fruit.
1. Cream of tomato soup, baked vegetables in casserole with eggs, fruit salad on lettuce, lemonade with honey, starchless cookies.
2. Cream of celery soup, baked potato, spinach, Waldorf salad (apples,, celery, chopped nuts) with dressing of sweet cream and orange juice on crisp lettuce.
3. Hot beet soup with sweet cream seasoning, Spanish omelette, orange-pineapple salad on crisp lettuce.
4. Hot beet soup with sweet cream,baked potatoes, string beans,
grated carrot and apple salad on lettuce with orange-juice dressing.
5. Lima bean-vegetable soup, Rye-Krisp, carrot and cabbage slaw,
sweet raw apple or pear.
6. Lentil soup, brown rice, cream, fresh peas (slightly cooked), carrot and lettuce salad, fruit cup or fruit, beverage.
7. Split pea soup, toasted whole-wheat bread with butter or Rye-Krisp; grated raw carrot, celery, olives on lettuce; fresh raw fruit.
8. Spinach-potato soup with sweet cream seasoning; Rye-Krisp or whole-wheat muffins with butter; grated turnip and chopped parsley on lettuce; fruit cup beverage.