Back in 1957 Pillsbury hosted its 9th annual grand national bake-off, and the winners were published in a cookbook. Somehow a copy of this cookbook came in to my possession — I don’t know how I got it, but when I unpacked a bin looking for something else, there it was.
So, I began looking through the recipes, and found out that most of them are simple with common ingredients, so I thought I might give one a try. The contestants for this contest were only in three categories: Junior (anybody from ages 12-18), Senior (anybody 19 and above), and a special category thrown in there called Bride (anybody married only a year or so and between the ages of 19 and 30). I’m not sure why there had to be a special cooking category for newlyweds, but then a lot of things in 1957 were done differently.
This Yorkshire Burger Casserole was from Junior category entrant Paul Kellogg, and it fit all my requirements for cooking (easy, common ingredients, City Boy pleasing). I’m guessing Paul was around 17 or so when this cookbook was published.
Excerpt from cookbook of finished Yorkshire Burger Casserole and contestant photo profile
These kinds of finds always make me wonder whatever happened to the people — I mean, Paul here would be around 72 years old now if he is still living, and I wonder if he always enjoyed cooking and if he made it to college, etc. But anyway, enough going down the road to the past. Here are the pictures and tips, along with the recipe, with very few alterations to fit in with today’s cooking methods.
Yorkshire Burger Casserole
Ingredients for Casserole:
- 1-1/2 lbs ground beef
- 1/4 cup chili sauce
- 1 package dry onion soup
- 2 tbsp. chopped parsley or 1 tbsp dried parsley flakes
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
- 1/4 tsp poultry or chicken seasoning
- 5 eggs
- 1 tbsp water
- 1-1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1-1/2 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp salt
- 1-1/2 cups milk
- 3 tbsp melted butter or margarine
Ingredients for Gravy:
- 1/4 cup butter or margarine
- 3 tbsp flour
- 1 beef bouillon cube
- 2-1/2 cups milk
Combine first six ingredients. In small bowl slightly beat 1 of the eggs and blend in with it the 1 tbsp water. Add to meat mixture and mix well. Form this mixture into 24 meat balls. Place in a well-greased 11×8 baking dish.
Mix together flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl. In another mixer bowl, combine the four remaining eggs, milk and melted butter and beat until foamy. Add dry ingredients and beat with rotary mixer until smooth and well blended. Pour over meat balls.
Bake in a 350 degree oven for 50-60 minutes until golden brown. Serve with gravy.
To make gravy, melt butter or margarine and bouillon cube in saucepan. Blend in flour to make a rue. Add milk and cook, stirring occasionally, until gravy is smooth and thickened.
The original recipe called for using a 12×8 baking pan instead of the 11×8 that I used. Actually, I wonder if Paul didn’t actually mean that he used a 9×13 baking pan, since the picture shows his meat balls were all nice and evenly spaced while mine were all crammed together and in crooked rows. But, whichever baking pan you have on hand that’s closest will get the job done. The casserole looks like it’s going to overflow when it is still baking, but it settled back down without flowing all over my oven.
This was my first time ever making gravy starting with a rue. I had always just thrown everything in the pan together and used a whisk to blend the gravy before it was able to get too hot on the stove. But making it from the rue really made it turn out smoother and nicer, and with a lot less work!
City Boy and I both enjoyed this meat ball casserole, and I hope if you give it a try you will like it as well as we did! Happy cooking!